_ plus the help of a financial grant from the Kentucky average dressing percent was 63.52; and the average
i 45 Department of Economic Development, the Station carcass grade was Choice minus (12).
decided to try faster aging methods. The most significant part of this whole project lies
v Four temperature-humiditycontrolled aging cabi- in the fact that considerable variation in average daily i
,* nets were built so that temperatures could be main- gains was eliminated through the use of half-brothers.
tained as high as 110F. Hams, after normal dry-cur- This represents a practical compromise of the re-
. ing and smoking, were placed in these cabinets at searchers ideal which calls for the use of identical
Y temperatures of 80, 90, 100, and 1I0F, respectively, twins for nutritional research. By using half-brothers,
with a relative humidity of approximately 55-65 per- small but real differences due to tested items can be .
A cent. Humidity control is important, as increased uncovered with fewer steers and less repetition of re-
ii shrinkage occurs at lower humidities and excess mold searchwith a consequent saving in time and money.
growth occurs at high humidities. So far as can be determined, this is the first and only
` Hams were removed from the cabinets at monthly time that a land grant institution or commercial re-
. intervals, analyzed for fat characteristics, and tested search establishment has ever used 80 halfbrothers for '
i I b` by a palatability panel. The results were variable. The steer feedlot research.
ti highest temperatures were evidently too high because The project is continuing with over 100 sons of
V the outside fat was discolored and overrancid. A few T B Zato Heir 181 headed for U.K. feed lots this fall.
in hams spoiled, evidently due to being subjected too In addition, a smaller group of calves sired artifically
g quickly to the extreme conditions. Some hams were by Big Foot Corrector, a $10,000 herd sire at Mere-
V A excellent at 4 to 5 months, showing that fast aging is worth, will be purchased for U.K. research this fall.
A it possible. Because too many hams were undesirable, In the fall of 1962, groups of calves sired by four
s the initial test was regarded as only partially success- carefully selected Hereford bulls will be compared in
ful. Therefore, modifications were made and new tests our feedlots and through a packing plant in an effort
I C begun. to discover lines of Hereford breeding that combine
. Je Present tests include hams being aged at 75, 85, 95, rate of gain, feed efficiency and desirable carcass char-
jr dg and 105F as well as the 65 control hams. The hams acteristics in a high degree. Dr. Neil Bradley, of the
It were kept in cure for a longer time to allow better Animal Husbandry Department, and the author are
>J salt equalization. After smoking, they were placed in convinced that desirable eating qualities can be bred
_ the 65 room for 2 weeks before being placed in the into beef cattle whereas, up to now, such qualities
1 warmer cabinets. After 3 months in the cabinets there have been fed into our cattle at a high cost, with a
seems to be no spoilage. Palatability tests will be made resulting excess of carcass fat. Our belief is based on
again soon. genetic research which shows that tenderness has a
No definite recommendation can be announced yet. heritability index of 61%, ribeye area 69%, and dress-
at Details will have to be worked out so that uniform, ing percentage 71%.
i i consistent results can be expected. When and if this Other research has shown that ribeye area is closely
A occurs, recommendations will be forthcoming. associated with cutout value in the beef calf. Every
3 additional inch of ribeye area means approximately $4
extra cutout value Jer 600- >ound carcass at resent
Haulbrothcr Steers Used beef prices. Since iibeye aiea ranges from zi) to 16
aq (Continued from Page 5) inches per 600-pound carcass, it is evident that great
Cb0iC minus according to tb Kntn01