Physicochemical and sensorial characteristics of four muscles from commercial crossbred pigs slaughtered at 130 kg body weight

S. Calvo, J. A. Rodríguez-Sánchez, B. Panea, M. A. Latorre


In Spain, a sizeable proportion of pigs are slaughtered above 100 kg of body weight because are mainly intended for dry-cured ham elaboration. The chance of finding pork cuts differentiated by quality, which might be intended for fresh meat consumption, would optimize the production of heavy carcasses. The aim of this work was to evaluate the physicochemical and sensory characteristics of four muscles from heavy pigs. A total of 14 Duroc × (Landrace × Large White) gilts were slaughtered at 130 kg of body weight. From each carcass, the following muscles (two per carcass) were excised: Longissimus thoracis (LT), Psoas major (PM), Lattissimus dorsi (LD) and Serratus ventralis (SV). Several physical (color, moisture losses and resistance to cutting), chemical (intramuscular fat content and its fatty acid profile) and sensorial (attributes related to aroma, flavor, texture and acceptability) characteristics were evaluated. The LT had the highest fibrousness and the lowest water holding capacity indicators, tenderness and juiciness. The PM showed the lowest intramuscular fat and monounsaturated fatty acid contents and fibrousness, and the highest moisture, C18:2n6 and polyunsaturated fatty acid proportions. The LD had the highest yellowness and intensity of fat odor and flavor. The SV provided the highest intramuscular fat content and red color, and the lowest resistance to cutting. All muscles had similar score in global acceptability. There were several interesting physicochemical and sensory differences among the muscles studied which suggest that they might be commercialized individually as meat cuts of differentiated quality optimizing the use of heavy pig carcasses.


differentiated quality; heavy pigs; pork meat

Full Text:



Aaslyng MD, Bejerholm C, Ertbjerg P, Bertram HC, Andersen HJ, 2003. Cooking loss and juiciness of pork in relation to raw meat quality and cooking procedure. Food Qual Prefer 14: 277288.

Alasnier C, Remignon H, Gandemer G, 1996. Lipid characteristics associated with oxidative and glycolytic fibres in rabbit muscles. Meat Sci 43: 213-224.

Alonso V, Campo MM, Provincial L, Roncals P, Beltrn JA, 2010. Effect of protein level in commercial diets on pork meat quality. Meat Sci 85: 7-14.

Andrs AI, Cava R, Mayoral AI, Tejeda JF, Morcuende D, Ruz J, 2001. Oxidative stability and fatty acid composition of pig muscle as affected by rearing system, crossbreeding and metabolic type of fibre. Meat Sci 59: 39-47.

Bligh E, Dyer WJ, 1959. A rapid method of total lipid extraction and purification. Can J Biochem Physiol 37: 911-914.

BOA, 1993. Orden de 29 de julio de 1993, del Departamento de Agricultura, Ganadera y Montes, por la que se aprueba el Reglamento de la Denominacin de Origen Jamn de Teruel y su Consejo Regulador. Bol. Of. Aragn 93: 3168-3177.

Brewer MS, Lan HY, 1998. Consumer evaluation of pork appearance with differing physiological and packaging conditions. J Muscle Foods 9: 173-183.

Cava R., Estvez M., Ruz J, Morcuende D, 2003. Physicochemical characteristics of three muscles from free-range reared Iberian pigs slaughtered at 90 kg live weight. Meat Sci 63: 533-541.

CIE, 1976. Colorimetry: Official Recommendations of the International Commission on Illumination. Bureau Centr Commiss Int lEclairage, Publ CIE No. 15 (E-1.3.1), Paris, France.

Consejo Regular DOP Jamn Teruel, 2011. CRDO Jamn de Teruel. Available in [9 December 2011].

Daza A, Latorre MA, Lpez-Bote CJ, 2010. The use of barley as single ingredient in the diet provided during the finishing period may improve the meat quality of heavy pigs from DO Teruel ham (Spain). Span J Agric Res 8: 607-616.

Estvez M, Morcuende D, Cava R, 2003. Physico-chemical characteristics of M. Longissimus dorsi from three lines of free-range reared Iberian pigs slaughtered at 90 kg live-weight and commercial pigs: A comparative study. Meat Sci 65: 1139-1146.

FEDNA, 2003. Tablas FEDNA de composicin y valor nutritivo de alimentos para la fabricacin de piensos compuestos, 2nd ed (De Blas C, Mateos GG and Rebollar PG, eds.). Fundacin Espaola para el Desarrollo de la Nutricin Animal, Madrid, Spain.

Honikel KO, 1998. Reference methods for the assessment of physical characteristics of meat. Meat Sci 49: 447-457.

Huff-Lonergan E, Baas TJ, Malek M, Dekkers JC, Prusa K, Rothschild MF, 2002. Correlations among selected pork quality traits. J Anim Sci 80: 617-627.

ISO 8586-1, 1993. Sensory analysis: General guidance for the selection and training and monitoring of assessors. Part 1. Selected assessors. International Organisation for Standardization, Geneve.

ISO 8589, 1988. Sensory analysis: General guidance for the design of test rooms. International Organisation for Standardization, Geneve.

Jorgensen PF, Hylgaard-Jensen JF, 1975. The effect of physical training on skeletal muscle enzyme composition on pigs. Acta Vet Scan 16: 368-375.

Kauffman RG, Safanie AH, 1967. Influence of porcine muscle structure on its lipid accumulation during growth. J Food Sci 32: 283-289.

Laborde D, Talmant A, Monin G, 1985. Activits enzymatiques mtaboliques et contractiles de 30 muscles du Porc. Relations avec le pH ultime atteint aprs la mort. Reprod Nutr Develop 25: 619-628.

Larrea V, Hernando I, Quiles A, Lluch MA, Prez-Munuera I, 2006. Changes in proteins during Teruel dry-cured ham processing. Meat Sci 74: 586-593.

Larrea V, Prez-Munuera I, Hernando I, Quiles A, Llorca E, Lluch MA, 2007. Microstructural changes in Teruel dry-cured ham during processing. Meat Sci 76: 574-582.

Latorre MA, Garca-Belenguer E, Ario L, 2008a. The effects of gender and slaughter weight on growth performance and carcass traits of pigs intended for dry-cured ham from Teruel (Spain). J Anim Sci 86: 1933-1942.

Latorre MA, Pomar C, Faucitano L, Garipy C, Mthods S, 2008b. The relationship within and between production performance and meat quality characteristics in pigs from three different genetic lines. Livest Sci 115: 258-267.

Latorre MA, Ripoll G, Garca-Belenguer E, Ario L, 2009a. The effect of gender and slaughter weight on loin and fat characteristics of pigs intended for Teruel dry-cured ham production. Span J Agric Res 7: 407-416.

Latorre MA, Ripoll G, Garca-Belenguer E, Ario L, 2009b. The increase of slaughter weight in gilts as strategy to optimize the production of high quality dry-cured ham. J Anim Sci 87: 1464-1471.

Lawrie RA, 1998. The eating quality of meat. Meat Science, 6th ed. Woodhead Publ, Cambridge.

Leseigneur-Meynier A, Gandemer G, 1991. Lipid composition of pork muscle in relation to the metabolic type of the fibres. Meat Sci 29: 229-241.

Lindahl G, Lundstrm K, Torberg E, 2001. Contribution of pigment content, myoglobin forms and internal reflectance to the colour of pork loin and ham from pure breed pigs. Meat Sci 59: 141-151.

Lpez-Bote CJ, 1998. Sustained utilization of the Iberian pig breed. Meat Sci 49: 17-27.

Macfie HJ, Bratchell N, Greengoff K, Vallis LV, 1989. Designs to balance the effect of order presentation and first-order and carry over effects in hall tests. J Sens Stud 4: 129-148.

MARM, 2011. Datos del Anuario de Estadstica Agraria del Ministerio de Medio Ambiente, Medio Rural y Marino del 2010. Available in [15 December 2011].

Morcuende D, Estvez M, Ruz J, Cava R, 2003. Oxidative and lipolytic deterioration of different muscles from free-range reared Iberian pigs under refrigerated storage. Meat Sci 65: 11571164.

Morcuende D, Estvez M, Ramrez R, Cava R, 2007. Effect of the Iberian Duroc reciprocal cross on productive parameters, meat quality and lipogenic enzyme activities. Meat Sci 76: 86-94.

Muriel E, Antequera T, Ruz J, 2002. Efecto del tipo de msculo sobre parmetros de calidad en carne fresca de cerdo Ibrico. Ciencia y Tecnologa Alimentaria 3: 241-247.

Muriel E, Ruz J, Ventanas J, Petrn MJ, Antequera T, 2004. Meat quality characteristics in different lines of Iberian pigs. Meat Sci 67: 299-307.

NRC, 1998. Nutrient requirements of swine. National Research Council, 10th ed. Ntl. Acad. Press, Washington, DC, USA.

Prieto B, Latorre MA, 2007. Influencia de la estirpe sobre la calidad de la canal del cerdo Ibrico puro en extensivo. Proc IV Student Int Congr Exp Health Sci, Valencia, Spain. pp. 121.

Resano H, Sanjuan AI, Albisu LM, 2009. Consumers' acceptability and actual choice. An exploratory research on cured ham in Spain. Food Qual Prefer 20: 391-398.

Resano H, Sanjuan AI, Cilla I, Roncals P, Albisu LM, 2010. Sensory attributes that drive consumer acceptability of dry-cured ham and convergence with trained sensory data. Meat Sci 84: 344-351.

Rodrguez-Snchez JA, Ripoll G, Calvo S, Ario L, Latorre MA, 2009. The effect of seasonality of the growing-finishing period on carcass, meat and fat characteristics of heavy pigs. Meat Sci 83: 571-576.

Rodrguez-Snchez JA, Ripoll G, Latorre MA, 2010. The influence of age at the beginning of Montanera period on meat characteristics and fat quality of outdoor Iberian pigs. Animal 4: 289-294.

Rodrguez-Snchez JA, Sanz MA, Blanco M, Serrano M, Joy M, Latorre MA, 2011. The influence of dietary lysine restriction during the finishing period on growth performance and carcass, meat, and fat characteristics of barrows and gilts intended for dry-cured ham production. J Anim Sci 89: 3651-3662.

SAS, 1990. Users guide: statistics. Vers 6, 4th ed, Stat Anal Syst Inst Inc., Cary, NC, USA.

Serra X, Gil F, Prez-Enciso M, Oliver MA, Vzquez JM, Gispert M, Daz I, Moreno F, Latorre R, Noguera JL, 1998. A comparison of carcass, meat quality and histochemical characteristics of Iberian (Guadyerbas line) and Landrace pigs. Livest Prod Sci 56: 215-223.

SPSS, 2005. SPSS manual vers 14.0 for Windows. SPSS, Inc., Chicago, IL, USA.

Tejeda JF, Garca C, Muriel E, Antequera T, 2002. Muscle lipid composition of Iberian pig meat as related to genetic line. 48th Int Congr of Meat Science and Technology, Roma, Italy. Vol. II, pp: 734.

Ventanas J, Ventanas S, Hidalgo J, 2008. Calidad sensorial y nutricional de la carne y productos del Cerdo Ibrico. In El cerdo Ibrico. Una revisin transversal (Forero J, ed.). Ed Junta de Andaluca, Sevilla. pp: 185-209.

Weiler U, Appell HJ, Kremser M, Hofacker S, Claus R, 1995. Consequences of selection on muscle composition. A comparative study on gracilis muscle in wild and domestic pigs. J Vet Med 24: 77-80.

Wood JD, Wiseman J, Cole DJA, 1994. Control and manipulation of meat quality. In Progress in pig science (Cole DJA, Wiseman J & Wood JD, eds.), U. Press, Nottingham, pp: 433-456.

Wood JD, Richardson RI, Nute GR, Fisher AV, Campo MM, Kasapidou E, Sheard PR, Enser M, 2003. Effects of fatty acids on meat quality: a review. Meat Sci 66: 21-32.

Wood JD, Enser M, Fisher AV, Nute GR, Sheard PR, Richardson RI, Hughes SI, Whittington FM, 2008. Fat deposition, fatty acid composition and meat quality: a review. Meat Sci 78: 343-358.

Wyszcecki G, Stiles WS, 1982. Color science: quantitative data and formula (2nd ed.). Concepts and methods. John Wiley, NY.

DOI: 10.5424/sjar/2012103-2625