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Meat Quality and Cooking Characteristics in Broilers Influenced by Winter Transportation Distance and Crate Density

  • Hussnain, Faisal1
  • Mahmud, Athar1
  • Mehmood, Shahid1
  • Jaspal, Muhammad H.2
  • 1 Department of Poultry Production, Faculty of Animal Production and Technology, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore , (Pakistan)
  • 2 Department of Meat Science and Technology, Faculty of Animal Production and Technology, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore , (Pakistan)
Published Article
The Journal of Poultry Science
Japan Poultry Science Association
Publication Date
Apr 25, 2020
DOI: 10.2141/jpsa.0190014
PMID: 32461733
PMCID: PMC7248002
PubMed Central
  • Full Papers


A study was conducted to determine the effect of transportation distance and crating density on meat quality traits during winter. ROSS-308 broilers aged 35 days were divided into 10 treatment groups based on three transportation distances (80, 160, and 240 km) with three crating densities (10, 12, and 15 birds per crate) along with birds slaughtered on farm without crating as a control group. Each treatment was replicated 10 times and placed at various locations in the truck. The birds were transported in plastic crates of 0.91 m×0.55 m×0.30 m at ambient temperature and relative humidity of 3.6–9.5°C and 63.3–78.8%, respectively. The breast meat quality parameters including pH, color, drip loss, shear force, marinade uptake and retention, cooking losses, and yield were determined. The results showed significantly higher pH 15 min post-slaughter (PS), drip loss, lightness, marinade uptake, raw meat cooking yield, and shear force in birds slaughtered on farm without any transportation. The birds transported for 240 km had significantly higher pH at 2 hours (h) PS, marinade retention, and cooking yield. Whereas, pH at 24 h PS, meat redness, yellowness, chroma, and marinated meat cooking yield were significantly higher in all transported treatments compared to the control group. Among different crating densities, the birds transported with 10 birds per crate showed significantly higher meat redness, marinade retention, and cooking yield. The crating density of 15 birds per crate had significantly higher lightness, hue, cooking loss, and shear force. However, no effect of crating density was observed on meat pH, drip loss, and marinade uptake. It can be concluded that an increase in transportation distance and low crating density during winter can negatively affect physical quality of meat with significant improvement in marination and cooking characteristics.

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