The effects of feeding system and breed on the performance and meat quality of weaned lambs uri icon

abstract

  • Selecting proper animal genotype that suits particular environment, management systems, market requirements and food processing is a fundamental step to achieve efficiency in livestock operations. Thus, this study compared the performance and meat quality of the fat-tailed, Akkaraman (AKK) and crossbred, Anatolian Merino (AMR) lambs under the feeding systems of annual forage mixture (AFM), perennial pastures (PAS) or concentrated-based (CON). There were no consistent breed differences for liveweight gain (LWG) but AKK lambs that were fed AFM had greater NDF intake and digestibility than AMR lambs (P < 0.01). Lambs that consumed forage-based diets had lower slaughter weights and weight-related carcass traits than lambs on CON (P <0.05). Dressing percentage was greater for AKK compared to AMR across all diets (P < 0.05). However, AMR had a greater meat to bone ratio and more intermuscular fat in the thoracic region than AKK (P < 0.01). The ratio of n6 to n3 fatty acids was lower with forage-based diets compared to CON (3.9 and 5.4, respectively). However, CLA isomers (C18:2, cis-9 trans-11 and C18:2 trans-10 cis-12c) and alpha-linolenic acid (C18:3 cis-9, cis-12, cis-15) composition of the fatty acids were all greater with forage-based feeding (P < 0.01). Ratios of n-6/n-3 FA were lower in PAS and AFM groups compared to CON indicating the superiority of forage based diets on producing higher meat quality. High CLA content of meat from pasture-fed fat tailed AKK lambs suggest positive human health benefits given tail fat is widely used in traditional cultural dishes.

publication date

  • 2020
  • 2020