Sensory characteristics and tenderness of meat from Ankole bulls: Influence of crossbreeding and feeding system
Eating-quality attributes of meat from Ankole cattle and their Friesian and Boran crossbreds finished in different feeding systems were evaluated. Seventy two 8-month-old bulls (24 each of pure Ankole (A), Ankole x Boran (B) and Ankole x Friesian (F) (191 ± 9.6 kg average weight) were allotted to three feeding systems in a completely randomized design with a 3 x 3 factorial treatment, and were slaughtered after 120 days. The longissimus dorsi muscle was excised from the carcasses and divided into five samples for sensory and shear force analysis. Samples aged 2, 7, 14 and 21days were subjected to the Warner Braztler shear force (WBSF) machine for textural tenderness determination. Steaks from Ankole and Friesian crossbreds attained WBSF values below 55N within 7 days of post mortem storage, whereas Boran crossbreds attained a similar level of tenderness at 14 days. Steaks from Ankole and Friesian crossbreds were rated more tender, juicy and acceptable than Boran crossbreds by panelists. Steaks from grazed bulls were rated less tender, juicy and palatable than steaks from supplemented and feedlot finished bulls. It was concluded that when grazed and supplemented or finished in a feedlot and meat aged for 7 days, Ankole bulls produce tender meat of an as high eating-quality as their Ankole x Friesian crossbreds.
Keywords: Ankole cattle, crossbreds, feeding system, sensory scores, meat tenderness