Three newly developed electronic lamb carcass grading probes (Hennessy Grading Probe, AUS-Meat Sheep Probe, Swedish FTC Lamb Probe) and one developmental probe (Ruakura GR lamb probe) were tested for accuracy in classifying 6 groups, each of approximately 50 lamb carcasses. They were assessed for accuracy and suitability for use on- line on the lamb dressing chain for objectively classifying lamb carcasses. Probe measurements were compared with manual GR (sometimes used at present) and Toland (can measure total tissue depth between the ribs) probe measurements for accuracy of predicting both GR on the right side of each carcass, and also carcass water (indicating muscle) and fat content. All probes combined with carcass weight accounted for over 70% of the variation (R2) of GR right with the GR left prediction accounting for 92% of the variation in GR right. The 3 commercial electronic probes used at chain speed combined with carcass weight could account for 36- 49% of the variation in % water and fat with the manual GR probe (right) doing only slightly better on the chilled carcass. Chilled carcass measurements are expected to give better results. The electronic probe results are consistent with overseas results where probes are in use for objectively grading the carcasses of meat animals.

B, Kuhn, HT Blair, RW Purchas, and SN McCutcheon

Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 53, , 335-338, 1993
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