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Effect of Texel crossbreeding on productive traits, carcass and meat quality of Segureña lambs

Blasco, Miguel, Campo, María M, Balado, Javier, Sañudo, Carlos
Journal of the science of food and agriculture 2019 v.99 no.7 pp. 3335-3342
Texel, average daily gain, carcass quality, farms, females, genotype, lambs, lipid content, males, meat quality, muscles, oleic acid, profitability, protein content, sheep meat, sires, slaughter, straw, Mediterranean region
BACKGROUND: The present study aimed to assess the effect of crossbreeding a local breed (Segureña, S × S) with Texel as the sire line (Texel × Segureña crossbred, T × S) on productive traits and meat quality attributes. Sixty‐eight lambs (both males and females) from each genotype, weaned at about 45 days old and intensively fed with concentrates and cereal straw ad libitum until they were 72 days old, were used to assess productive traits, and ten animals from each genotype were used to assess meat quality. RESULTS: The crossbreeding with Texel improves productivity, with a greater weight at birth (+1 kg) and at slaughter (+3 kg) and a greater average daily gain (+29 g). T × S lambs had a better conformation, less carcass fatness, and higher content of muscle (+45 g kg⁻¹) as opposed to a lower fat content (−50.6 g kg⁻¹). With regard to meat quality, crossbreeding with Texel provided a meat with a higher protein content (+4 g kg⁻¹) and a lower oleic acid content (21% less), although the differences were very scarce from a sensory point of view, and non‐existent with respect to instrumental quality. CONCLUSION: Crossbreeding could comprise a useful tool in the production of ovine meat in local breeds, such as Segureña, within the Mediterranean Area, and, consequently, a way of increasing the profitability of the farms. © 2018 Society of Chemical Industry