Scots aim to predict meat quality

Scottish meat bosses have launched a major project which they claim will allow them to predict the eating quality of meat cuts. Meat processors in Scotland are to be offered new technology which will allow them to accurately measure the different factors in eating quality, such as tenderness, colour and fat levels.

The Quality Meat Scotland project, part-funded by the Scottish government, will initially focus on beef but is intended to roll out to lamb and pork.

Richard Lochhead, rural affairs secretary, launched the project at the Royal Highland Show today. He said: "This unique project is good news for the red meat sector and even better news for consumers. We know the importance shoppers attach to quality and taste and that this, in turn, provides a boost for those responsible for Scotland's world-class produce.”

QMS chairman Donald Biggar said: “This is an extremely exciting initiative which puts Scotland at the very forefront of what is a global quest to offer guarantees to consumers about the eating quality of the beef they're buying.

"Our Scottish meat processors will be the first to have the technology to make a rapid assessment of the complex range of factors that together determine how well a piece of beef tastes.

“The data on the quality of individual carcases in meat plants can be fed back from the processor to the producer so that he or she can pinpoint the sort of farm level decisions that are delivering consistently high quality meat.

"Capturing this level of information and using it as a mechanism to further drive up the quality of beef produced across Scotland has the potential to revolutionise how we promote our Scotch Beef to consumers around the world."

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