Farm Table says:
This article looks at the relationship between management practices and dark cutting in beef cattle. It talks about glycogen loss and how stress affects cattle; and how specific management techniques on a farm can increase better carcass quality in the future.
Items covered in this article were:
• Glycogen loss
• Managing practices to reduce dark cutting
• Checklist to minimise dark cutting
Key points were as follows:
• Glycogen loss occurs when cattle become stressed, supplying a high energy nutritious diet will help stored levels of glycogen in cattle together with using low-stress stock handling techniques.
• Stress in cattle can by physical or psychological.
• Cattle being sent to slaughter should be able to graze high-quality pasture or given supplements several weeks beforehand.
• Tips for reducing dark cutting in your cattle:
- Low-stress stock handling
- Yard wean cattle
- cull cattle with bad temperaments
- muster cattle as close to transport as possible but allow short rest time
- Remove sick or injured stock
- Keep noise to a minimum
- Don’t mix mobs of cattle together in the weeks leading to slaughter
- don’t use electric prodders
• More tips can be found here.