Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Animal Husbandry

Major Professor

Charles S. Hobbs

Committee Members

J. W. Cole, M. B. Badenhop


It has been generally agreed in the past that the more highly finished the beef animal the more desirable are market characteristics of it's carcass and retail cuts. Marbling, a measure of quality, has been associated with a highly finished carcass. Recently, however, morestudy has been given as to what the consumer of beef actually prefers in the cuts of meat he buys. Many times this or similar questions have been asked, "Are consumers willing to accept a heavy rind of fat with the better quality steaks and roasts they buy at the same or at a higher price that for which they may purchase a leaner portion?" Presently, holding age constant, our federal grading system for beef carcasses reflects largely the degree of fatness of the animal from which it came, and to as much lesser extent, conformation of the carcass.

Extensive research has been conducted on measurements, grades, dressing percentages, and composition of various type carcasses. However, little work has been done with relating these carcass characteristics to what consumers of beef actually prefer.

This study was designed to investigate what consumers desire by using grades as they now exist. It was decided that if families were allowed to cook samples of beef in their homes under consumer conditions comparison might be made between grades of steaks, independent of price,and an association with actual carcass characteristics could be studied.

Specifically, the objectives of the study are:

1. To make a study of carcass measurements and the percentage of wholesale cuts with regard to grade.

2. To determine the percentages of lean, fat, and bone in the beef carcass with regard to grade.

3. To determine the ratios of moisture, crude protein, and fat that the meat of the grades studied actually yields.

4. To compare grades by a trained taste panel and to measure organoleptic factors under controlled conditions.

5. To compare grades by giving meat to forty families in units of two samples, each representing a different grade.

6. To correlate carcass characteristics with testing results.

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