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How nutritional value and eating quality of pork can be further improved

A feeding experiment was conducted on three pig farms to evaluate the possibility of producing pork with both a specifically improved nutritional value and exceptional eating quality. By supplementing the feed, the concentrations of selenium, vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids were increased in the meat and adipose tissue of the pigs as well as in the subsequent meat products. The omega-6/omega-3 ratio was improved to a desirable value below five. A combined supplementation of organic (selenomethionine) and inorganic (sodium selenite) selenium ensured that the meat contained enough selenium to permit the claim «source of selenium». The eating quality of the meat products was not impaired. Prolonged ageing of the meat from three to nine days markedly improved its tenderness. With a heritability of 0,37 and an observed high variation, pork tenderness can also be improved by means of breeding. In contrast, electrostimulation of the carcasses did not consistently improve the tenderness. We conclude that applicable measures to improve nutritional value and eating quality of pork under practical production conditions are available.

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How nutritional value and eating quality of pork can be further improved

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