Carcass and meat quality traits of Iberian pig as affected by sex and crossbreeding with different Duroc genetic lines

A. Robina, J. Viguera, T. Perez-Palacios, A. I. Mayoral, J. M. Vivo, M. T. Guillen, J. Ruiz


A total of 144 pigs were used to study the effects of sex (barrows or gilts) and terminal sire line (Iberian or three genetic lines of Duroc: Duroc 1, Duroc 2 and Duroc 3) on performance and carcass and meat quality traits. Gilts showed slightly lower average daily gain, shoulder weight and trimming losses, but slightly better primal cuts yields and higher loin weight, while there was no significant effect of sex on meat quality traits or on the fatty acid composition of lard and muscle. There were important differences in performance and in carcass and primal cuts quality traits between pure Iberian pigs and all Iberian × Duroc crossbreeds evaluated, partly due to the lower slaughter weights reached by the formers. The different sire lines showed differences in several traits; Duroc 1 group showed lower backfat thickness and ham and shoulder trimming losses, and higher primal cut yields than Duroc 2 and Duroc 3 groups. Intramuscular fat (IMF) content remained unaffected by crossbreeding, but meat color resulted more intense and redder in crosses from the Duroc 1 sire line. The accumulation of fatty acids in lard was not affected by Duroc sire line, while animals of the group Duroc 2 showed higher levels of monounsaturated fatty acid and lower of polyunsaturated ones in IMF. These results highlight the importance of considering not only performance, but also carcass and meat quality traits when deciding the Duroc sire line for crossbreeding in Iberian pig production.


biopsies; primal cuts; backfat thickness; fatty acid profile; color; intramuscular fat

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DOI: 10.5424/sjar/2013114-4637