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Tenderness of Beef Now Predictable

21 February 2013

SPAIN – Due to advances in cattle genotype study, food scientists could be able predetermined meat tenderness before slaughter.

Stemming from collaborative work headed by the Centre for Food and Technology Research in Aragon, geneticists have isolated a new gene variant that codes for meat quality.

The gene is responsible for coding amino acid changes that can result in meat hardness increases of 22 per cent.

Confirmed in Pyrenean and Mountain Brown cattle –both Spanish natives- the research has potential to increase bull value as cattle with the ‘tenderness genotype’ can be selected. Bioinformatic studies have shown that the genetic mutation exists in cattle breeds distributed over the world.

The Aragon Government has said that this means the discovery could be a global phenomenon.

Further research is required to assess the extent predicting tenderness could have on other meat parameters such as colour, juiciness and flavour.

The registration process for this process as a method of gauging tenderness is underway.

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