Die Bodenkultur - Journal for Land Management, Food and Environment

M. Haslinger, R. Leitgeb, F. Bauer, Thomas Ettle and Wilhelm M. Windisch:

Slaughter Yield and Meat Quality of Chicken at Different Length of Preslaughter Feed Withdrawal


180 broilers were divided into 6 groups, which were withdrawn from feed for 0, 2, 4, 8, 16 or 24 hours before slaughter.

Slaughter took place without any stress caused by transport or waiting times. Data about various slaughter weights, pH-values directly after slaughter and after 24 hours and various blood parameters (triglycerides, total protein, albumin, glutamate dehydrogenase and aspartate aminotransferase) were collected. Grilled meat samples were examined by a professional tasting panel. Increasing length of feed withdrawal reduced carcass weight, mainly due to losses in breast and thigh meat. Both pH-values rose slightly, but not sufficient to promote the development of DFD-meat.

The tasting panellists preferred meat samples from animals with longer time of feed withdrawal.

Key words:  Broilers, feed withdrawal, meat quality, pH, slaughter performance.