Carcass yields and meat quality characteristics of adult emus (Dromaius novaehollandiae) transported for 6h before slaughter.

Menon, D.G., Bennett, D.C., Uttaro, B., Schaefer, A.L., and Cheng, K.M.-T. (2014). "Carcass yields and meat quality characteristics of adult emus (Dromaius novaehollandiae) transported for 6h before slaughter.", Meat Science, 98(2), pp. 240-246. doi : 10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.05.027  Access to full text

Abstract

The meat quality characteristics of adult emus transported for 6 h before slaughter were determined. Forty-two emus were used in two trials, undertaken under warm and cool weather conditions, respectively. Male emus had significantly higher fat yields than females (12.43 kg vs 9.5 kg, P = 0.002). About 38.1% of the emus had no wounds or bruises, 40.5% had bruises, while 21.4% had small wounds after transport. Meat from injured emus had significantly higher pH45. In warm weather, emus experienced significantly higher loss in body weight than that under cool weather. Drip loss in meat after 24 h of storage was higher in emus which had greater live weight loss after transport (r = 0.66, P < 0.0001), confirming the adverse effects of transport stress on meat quality. Nutrient supplementation did not significantly affect processing yield or meat quality characteristics. This study points to the need for optimizing transport conditions of emus to maintain meat quality.

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