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Abstract :  Veterinary World, 2015


The objective of the study was to evaluate the effect of deep litter housing and fermented feed on carcass characteristics and meat quality of crossbred Hampshire pigs.

Materials and Methods:

Forty-eight weaned crossbred Hampshire piglets of 2 months age (24 males and 24 females) were selected for the experiment. The piglets were randomly assigned into 4 homogenous experimental groups with 6 males and 6 females each: E1; reared on a conventional housing and fed with a fermented diet, E2; reared on a deep litter housing system and fed with a fermented diet, E3; reared on a deep litter housing system and fed with a conventional diet and C; reared on a conventional housing system and fed with a conventional diet. The study was continued up to 32 weeks of age and at the end of this period, 6 animals (3 males and 3 females) from each experimental group were slaughtered to evaluate carcass traits and meat quality characteristics.


Pre-slaughter weight, hot carcass weight, and dressing percentage were significantly (p<0.01) affected by feeding fermented diet and deep litter housing while carcass traits, i.e., carcass length, backfat thickness, and loin eye area were not affected. The edible offal; liver and heart weight (p<0.05) differed significantly while kidney weight showed no difference. The inedible offal; head weight (p<0.01) and lung weight revealed a significant difference (p<0.05) while spleen and stomach weight showed no difference among the experimental groups. The wholesale cuts and meat: bone ratio of pigs also differed significantly among the groups. Morphometry of small and large intestine also showed a significant difference. Chemical composition of pork viz., moisture and total ash content was influenced by the treatment, while crude protein and ether extract content were not affected. Mineral composition of pork also showed no significant difference. Color characteristics of Longissimus dorsi muscle showed a significant difference in L* and a* value while parameter b* was not affected. The tenderness of meat showed significant difference among the groups (p<0.01).


Crossbred Hampshire pigs being reared on fermented feed and deep litter housing could produce highlygraded carcass and improvement in meat quality.