Meat Quality

 Industry Partners

Prairie Swine Centre is an affiliate of the University of Saskatchewan

Prairie Swine Centre is grateful for the assistance of the George Morris Centre in developing the economics portion of Pork Insight.

Financial support for the Enterprise Model Project and Pork Insight has been provided by:

Author(s): M.E.R. Dugan, J.L. Aalhus and B. Uttaro
Publication Date: January 1, 2004
Reference: Banff Pork Seminar 2004
Country: Canada


Current market demands are for “normal” pork to meet domestic and export consumption and to meet specialized markets. Quality pork is the combined result of genetics, nutrition, production management, transportation, slaughter, processing and retailing. There are a number of promising nutrients that have been shown to positively affect pork quality. Feeding protein or amino acid deficient diets will increase marbling. The downside is that this will impair growth performance and increase carcass fatness. Chromium works like insulin (lets the body absorb sugar) and may play a role in increasing rates of lean deposition. Betaine helps out methionine, which is an essential amino acid. Aside from being used for protein synthesis, it is also essential for many bodily chemical reactions. Adding betaine to diets has shown some potential to increase carcass leanness and/or growth performance. Magnesium has the potential to reduce energy-producing rates triggered by stress hormones. Creatine can be synthesized from 3 amino acids and works as a quick energy source for muscles. Feeding creatine may have the potential to improve pork quality. Feeding vitamin E is reported to significantly reduce drip loss in several studies. It will be of great value when pork products are developed with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids. Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) may help in the fight against diseases and even cancer. It could also reduce carcass fat, increase lean and possibly even improve feed efficiency.

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