Journal of the science of food and agriculture

The effects of animal age, feeding regime and a dietary beta-agonist on tenderness of three beef muscles.

PMID 27716945


Animal age as determined by number of permanent incisors (p. i.) is used in classification of beef carcasses to describe expected meat tenderness. However, animals differing in age are reared under different production systems (pasture or feedlot). In addition to age, other factors associated with particular production systems may also influence the palatability of meat. Therefore, the effects of age combined with feeding regime and the supplementation of a beta-agonist (zilpaterol) on the tenderness of M. longissimus lumborum (LL), M. semitendinosus (ST) and M. biceps femoris (BF) muscles were investigated. Tenderness of LL cuts was least affected by age but zilpaterol significantly decreased tenderness and ageing potential. Tenderness of high-collagen cuts (BF and ST) was negatively affected by age due to reduced collagen solubility. The effect of zilpaterol on these cuts was less significant and BF and ST cuts of the grain-fed A-age animals (0 p. i.) supplemented with zilpaterol (AZ) were more tender than the same cuts of grass-fed animals with 1-2 p. i. (AB-age) and grass-fed animals with 3-6 p. i. (B-age) according to Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF) and sensory analysis for tenderness. This study indicates that beta-agonists may influence variation in tenderness within an age class more than age or feeding regime. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry.

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Zilpaterol hydrochloride, VETRANAL, analytical standard
C14H19N3O2 · HCl