Farm Table says:
This article looks at the effects that diet has on sheepmeat flavour by understanding how a various feeding or grazing systems affect meat flavour and how the end flavour is perceived by consumers.
The items covered in this article were:
• Feeding and grazing systems
• Sheepmeat flavour
• Sensory evaluation
• Volatile compounds and the effect
• Nutrition effects on sheepmeat flavour
• Nutrition effects on aroma compounds
• Consumers perception
Key points were as follows:
• Most feeding systems in place have no negative effect on sheepmeat flavour, it is only a small percentage. (To minimise any off-flavour associated with sheep fed brassica crops, sheep should be removed from brassica crops for 2 weeks prior to slaughter).
• Consumers perceive flavour as an important quality when consuming and purchasing sheepmeat. Negative experiences with poor tasting meat can deter a consumer from making future purchases.
• MSA hold tasting panels to rate the quality, feel and taste of sheepmeat to provide constructive feedback on the overall product, this in turn assists producers in working towards improving specific factors of their meat production in the future.
• Cooked sheepmeat flavour can be impacted heavily by the diet of the animal in the weeks leading up to slaughter, it is important to be aware of the pastures that produce a negative flavour in the meat to ensure consumers do not have an undesirable experience when consuming the product.