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Consumer awareness, proximate composition, and sensory properties of processed African giant rat (Cricetomys gambianus) thigh meat
- Oyeyinka, Samson A., Alabi-Ogundepo, Tokun, Babayeju, Adeshola A., Joseph, John K.
- Journal of the Saudi Society of Agricultural Sciences 2017
- Cricetomys, adults, agricultural sciences, carbohydrates, farms, females, forelimbs, frying, grilling, head, hindlimbs, lipid content, lipids, males, nutrients, processed meat, processing technology, protein content, proximate composition, rats, ribs, sensory properties, stomach, students, surveys, Nigeria
- This study investigated the knowledge of consumption of giant rat meat within the University of Ilorin, Kwara State Nigeria and further determined the effect of processing methods on the most preferred meat part (thigh meat). After the survey, two male and female giant rats each were obtained from a farm and slaughtered according to standard method. A 2 × 2 design was used to obtain four samples. The male rats were boiled and then divided into two portions. One portion was deep-fat fried and the other grilled to produce. The same process was employed for the female samples. Proximate composition and sensory properties of the processed thigh meat was also assessed. Majority of the respondents (27) prefer the hind limb (thigh) of the giant rat compared to the head (3), ribs and stomach area (5) and the fore limbs (8). The proximate composition of the raw giant rat meat were not affected by the sex, since the values were very similar. Protein is the major nutrients in the meat (approx. 24%), while fats, ash, fibre and carbohydrate were very low. Frying and grilling resulted in significant reduction in the proximate composition of the meat. Grilling showed slightly higher protein contents (approx. 22%) than the fried samples (approx. 18%). In general, there was no significant (p ≤ .05) difference in the sensory properties of the processed meat. The low fat content of the giant rat meat is advantageous for adults and people suffering from fat related diseases. In conclusion, giant rat meat is popular among students and staff of the University of Ilorin, but its low consumption pattern is due to the limited amount raised or within the University environs.