Relationship between gilt behavior and meat quality using principal component analysis
Sadler, L. J.
Onteru, S. K.
Smith, R. M.
Johnson, A. K.
Lonergan, S. M.
Dekkers, Jack C. M.
Rothschild, Max Frederick
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Pig on-farm behavior has important repercussions on pig welfare and performance, but generally its relation- ship with meat quality is not well understood. We used principal component analysis to determine the rela- tionship between meat quality traits, feeding patterns, scale activity, and number of conflict-avoidance interactions. The first principal component indicated that gilts with greater daily feed intake stayed longer in the feeder and their meat had increased intramuscular fat (IMF), was lighter in color, and, in the second principal component, had better juiciness, tenderness, chewiness, and flavor. Meat from gilts with lower scale activity scores appeared to have more IMF but greater drip losses (DL). The third principal component suggested that dominant gilts could gain priority access to the feeder, eating more and growing fatter. In con- clusion, except for the slight associations with IMF and DL, gilt scale activity and conflict-avoidance behaviors were not good indicators of final meat quality attributes.
Is part ofMeat Science, 2014, vol. 96, num. 1, p. 264-269
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