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Meat Sci. 2006 Apr;72(4):719-26. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2005.10.002. Epub 2005 Nov 22.

Effects of feeding strategy during a short finishing period on performance, carcass and meat quality in previously-grazed young bulls.

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Estación Agrícola Experimental, CSIC. Apdo. 788, 24080 León, Spain.


Twenty-one Brown Swiss×Limousin young bulls reared on pasture were housed for a short finishing period (60 days). CA group (concentrate-ad libitum group) received concentrate and straw ad libitum for the whole finishing period. CR group (concentrate-restricted group) received 4kg of concentrate/animal per day and ad libitum alfalfa hay throughout the 60days. CRA group (concentrate-restricted/ad libitum group) received the same diet as CR group for the first 30days and the same diet as CA group for the last 30days. CA and CRA groups presented higher fatness values. Myoglobin concentration in muscle was highest in CA group (P<0.05) and carotene content in subcutaneous fat was highest in CR group (P<0.01), while Warner-Bratzler shear force and sensory traits were unaffected (P>0.05). It is concluded that, in this type of young animal, 4kg concentrate plus ad libitum alfalfa hay for a 60-day finishing period, despite lower fatness, provides carcasses and meat with acceptable quality characteristics, similar to those obtained from ad libitum fed animals for the same period.

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