Dissection data from an experiment involving 12 buffalo, nine ♂Friesian × ♀Egyptian native Baladi (½ Friesian) and nine ♂ Friesian × ♀ ½ Friesian (¾ Friesian) bulls were used to examine the growth and partition of fat between depots and its distribution in different regions of the carcass.
Growth of total dissectible carcass fat (TCF) and its component depots (subcutaneous (SCF); intermuscular (IMF); kidney knob and channel (KKCF)) and total offal fat (TOF) and its component depots (caul (CF); mesenteric (MF); heart (HF)) relative to total body fat (TBF = TCF + TOF) was examined.
Relative to TBF, no significant differences in growth coefficients or adjusted means of TCF, TOF, carcass SCF and carcass KKCF were found between genotypes. Compared with ¾ Friesians, buffaloes had lower rates of deposition of CF and IMF, lower proportion of TBF deposited as MF and a greater proportion of HF.
As dissected side fat (DSF) increased, the proportion of fat decreased in the distal hind limb and neck, increased in the abdominal wall and adjacent ventral part of the thoracic cavity and remained unchanged in the other carcass regions. Fat growth coefficients differed between genotype groups in all carcass regions except the distal hind limb, fore limb and thorax. A posterior-anterior decrease in growth impetus of fat from the loin (b < 1) towards the neck (b > 1) was traced in buffaloes while the growth coefficients within all dorsal cuts in cattle did not differ significantly from 1. Compared with cattle, buffaloes had more of the DSF occurring in the combined expensive cuts with higher SCF: IMF ratio only at the upper limits of fatness considered in the present work.
It is argued that buffaloes relative to Friesian cross-breds have a beef-type fat partition and that characteristic changes in rates of increase in fat depots relative to empty-body weight and in fat in various regions relative to total fat could be related to the increase in Friesian blood.