High amount of unsaturated fatty acids in backfat is undesirable because it decreases firmness and oxidative stability when used in processed meat. Slaughter plants in Switzerland are evaluating the fat score (FS) which measures the amount of double bonds in fatty acids in the outer layer of backfat and heavily penalize carcasses with high FS. At the testing station we have established the estimation of the FS by FQM, a portable NIR device. Data on 1740 pigs were used to estimate genetic parameters. Heritability of FS estimated by NIR was 32%. The trait is highly and unfavourably correlated with the proportion of premium cuts (lean meat content). At the current level of FS in the selection lines the derived economic values resulted in a relative weight in the production index between 7 and 13%. Since January 2006 FS is included in the genetic evaluation and the overall breeding goal of all selection lines.

A. Hofer, H. Luther, D. Kaufmann, D. Schworer

Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume , , 06.36, 2006
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