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Pakistan Journal of Nutrition
Year: 2004  |  Volume: 3  |  Issue: 2  |  Page No.: 107 - 111

The Effect of Feeding a Milk Diet Versus Concentrate and Hay Diet on the Meat Quality and Fatty Acid Profile of Lambs

N.J. Okeudo, B.W. Moss and M.B. Chestnutt    

Abstract: The object of this study was to compare carcass and meat quality characteristics of conventionally reared lambs with others reared solely on milk. Eighteen crossbred lambs weaned at 5 weeks of age were randomized within each sex into 2 groups. The first group was fed reconstituted whole milk and the second, commercial lamb pellets and hay. Both diets were offered ad libitum for 9 weeks. Animals were subsequently slaughtered under standard commercial conditions. Samples of shoulder joint were taken for dissection and meat quality assessment was made using the 6 - 12th rib section of the Longissimus doris muscle. Lambs on the concentrate and hay diet had significantly larger reticulo-rumens, livers and generally were less fat (p < 0.01) than milk-fed lambs. Dietary treatment had little effect on meat quality. Lambs reared on the milk diet contained higher proportion of unsaturated fatty acids in subcutaneous fat than lambs fed concentrate and hay. The milk diet did not appear to produce the typical pale "veal" colour in lambs as might be expected from studies on veal production.

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