Consumers judge the quality of meat at the point of sale on colour, visible fat content and odour. However, on eating meat, characteristics such as juiciness, flavour and texture also assume importance. Supermarket surveys of customer preferences have indicated that tenderness is the single most important meat quality characteristic that in-fluences whether consumers are repeat buyers. In New Zealand, the industry standard for tenderness is that shear force must be less than 11 kg F for exported meat. The meat industry recognises, however, that 11 kg F is the upper limit for shear force and that for discerning markets, tenderness values of <5 kg F are required if the markets are to be retained or improved.

R, Bickerstaffe

Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 56, , 153-156, 1996
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