Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Agriculture Scientists Building Better Beef

15.03.2011
It is a lesson taught in every school: Quality can be judged by one¡¯s grade, and scientists with Oklahoma State University¡¯s Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources are working to help beef producers get the best meat grade possible.

¡°Marbling is white flecks of fat within the meat muscle,¡± said Gerald Horn, OSU Graduates of Distinction professor in beef nutrition and management. ¡°The greater the amount of marbling in beef, the higher its grade because marbling makes beef more tender, flavorful and juicy.¡±

USDA Prime beef ¨C approximately 2 percent of graded beef ¨C has the highest levels of fat marbling, so it is the most tender and flavorful. Most of the graded beef sold in supermarkets is USDA Choice or USDA Select. The protein, vitamin and mineral content of beef are similar regardless of the grade.

¡°Nutrition and management practices that increase intramuscular fat deposition relative to other fat depots have the potential to decrease production of excess fat, improve the efficiency of beef production and be beneficial to the U.S. beef industry in meeting the growing world demand for high-quality beef cuts,¡± Horn said.

Intramuscular fat deposition develops early during growth, and can be influenced by pre-feedyard management practices. All cattle start out eating grass; approximately 75 percent of them are eventually shipped to feedyards where they are grown to maturity, or "finished," being fed specially formulated grain-based diets.

¡°Rate of weight gain is a key determinate of profitability in stocker cattle operations,¡± Horn said. ¡°In general, breakeven selling price decreases as average daily gain increases.¡±

The objective of Horn and the DASNR research team was to examine the effect of forage energy intake and type of ruminal fermentation on growth performance, partitioning of fat among depots and carcass characteristics of stocker cattle. An important outcome of this research will be an increased understanding of the physiological mechanisms by which muscle growth and metabolism influence marbling development.

¡°Our research showed stocker cattle production programs that result in higher rates of gain and/or higher ruminal propionate concentrations increase marbling and backfat,¡± he said. ¡°At moderate to high rates of gain, backfat increases more rapidly than marbling; this indicates that moderate rates of gain during the stocker phase could enhance marbling relative to backfat.¡±

Horn said while there were wide ranges in marbling scores and backfat thickness at the end of the grazing program, marbling scores at the end of the finishing phase were not different when the steers were slaughtered at a common backfat endpoint.

However, days on feed during the finishing phase of the DASNR research project ranged from 83 days to 138 days.

¡°Greater average daily gain during the stocker phase is important for decreasing breakeven prices and increasing profitability in the feedlot,¡± Horn said. ¡°This is particularly important during this new era of higher grain prices and increased cost of gain in the feedlot.¡±

The potential effects of nutrition-management practices on marbling development are not just a matter of increasing fat. Of the four fat depots in the body ¨C visceral, intermuscular, subcutaneous and marbling ¨C the last one to develop is marbling.

¡ñ Acetate serves as the primary source of energy or ¡°substrate¡± for subcutaneous fat, whereas glucose serves as the primary substrate for marbling. Propionate is the primary precursor of glucose.

¡ñ High-quality forages such as wheat pasture provide more ruminal propionate than low-quality dormant forages, and supplementation of corn for cattle grazed on dormant native range increases propionate production.

Academic and industry studies that address the question of nutrition-management practices on marbling development historically have been conducted during the feedlot phase of production. This present DASNR study is unique in that it focuses on factors influencing marbling development during the stocker phase.

In addition to Horn, research team members include OSU¡¯s Clint Krehbiel, Phillip Lancaster, Udaya DeSilva, Gretchen Hilton, Evin Sharman and Texas Tech University¡¯s Jessica Starkey.

Oklahoma State University, U. S. Department of Agriculture, State and Local governments cooperating; Oklahoma State University in compliance with Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Executive Order 11246 as amended, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and other federal and state laws and regulations, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, age, religion, disability, or status as a veteran in any of its policies, practices, or procedures, and is an equal opportunity employer.

Donald Stotts | Newswise Science News
Further information:
http://www.okstate.edu

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Alkaline soil, sensible sensor
03.08.2017 | American Society of Agronomy

nachricht New 3-D model predicts best planting practices for farmers
26.06.2017 | Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A Map of the Cell’s Power Station

18.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form

18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet

18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>