La revue Viandes et produits carnés

La revue française de la recherche en viandes et produits carnés  ISSN  2555-8560

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Everything you need to know about food. Untangling the real from the fake

In the form of brief chapters, answers are given to about sixty questions that consumers ask themselves when composing their meals. These responses are based on the views expressed by the majority of the scientific community of nutritionists and toxicologists. The topics covered are very diverse, covering cereal products (for example, gluten intolerances), fruit and vegetables (vegetarian "steaks", pesticide residues), dairy products (lactose intolerance), meat products (danger of barbecues), fats (trans fatty acid), aquatic products (farmed salmon), food additives (impact on food quality), food preferences (vegetarianism, veganism) and their impact on the environment (global warming).

Assessing the sustainability of a combined extensive/intensive beef production system: the case of French suckler cow-calf farms integrated with Italian beef fattening herds

This study was aimed at analyzing the performance of the beef system based on the integration between pasture-based suckler cow-calf farms in France (Massif Central) and cereal-based fattening farms of northern Italy. Two indicators were considered: carbon footprint (kg CO2-eq/kg body weight, BW, sold), and the human-edible feed conversion ratio computed as the ratio between the energy content in human-edible feedstuffs and the energy content of human-edible animal products (HeFCR). The reference unit was the batch (i.e. a group of stock calves homogenous for origin, finishing period and fattening farm). We considered 73 Charolais young bull batches (4882 heads), born in France (Massif Central), sold to northern Italy beef herds at 405±13 kg BW after a 1.16±0.13 kg/d weight gain and slaughtered at 729±23 kg BW, after a 1.52±0.09 kg/d weight gain during fattening. The mean carbon footprint of the overall beef production system averaged 13.0±0.6 CO2-eq/ kg BW, and the French suckler cow-calf phase accounted for 65% of global emissions. Conversely, the French suckler cow-calf phase was more efficient than the Italian beef finishing phase in terms of food supply for human consumption, as the HeFCR averaged 2.9±0.4 and 4.6±0.8 MJ/MJ in the French and Italian phases, respectively. Therefore, our results confirmed the complementarity of these two phases carried out in two very different contexts and the conjunction of interest between breeders and fatteners, which explains the development then the longevity of this cross-border sector since the 1970s.

An update on the bovine meat chain

The book "The bovine meat chain: Production, transformation, valorization and consumption" provides an update on the bovine meat sector (production, transformation and meat market), but it also provides consumer perceptions and expectations and the relationship between breed, meat and society. It first begins with an introduction which helps position meat in history and then it is divided into four main sections: 1) Production and transformation of bovine meat, 2) The bovine meat market, 3) Perceptions and expectations of consumers and 4) An accounting on "Breeding, meat and society". This article succinctly presents the subjects treated in the book.

Examples of meat research at INRA

The aim of the PHASE Division's research on animal products is to understand and predict the consequences of rearing conditions on the development of these products, particularly the quantity as well as the sensorial, nutritional, technological and health qualities of meat products. The ambition is to find compromises allowing to high value products under production conditions that meet the multi-performance objectives of the systems, whilst anticipating that the production conditions themselves will become a criterion of product quality. The scientific priorities concerning animal products are focused on the mechanisms of development and the functioning of the tissues or organs involved in production (notably the muscle) as illustrated in examples 1 and 2 of this article, on the development of tools for predicting the qualities of animal products especially in connection with farming practices (examples 3 and 4) and the identification of the most robust production biomarkers in a variety of contexts (example 5). For livestock systems, the challenge is to define combinations of solutions in terms of resources, animals and farming practices depending on the environment, to combine productive, economic and environmental performances (example 6) and optimization of the welfare and health of animals in different environments.

Alternatives to surgical castration of piglets

This paper reports results presented during a session organized at the 68th annual meeting of the EAAP (European Federation of Animal Science) on the theme "Alternatives to surgical castration of piglets without pain relief". The session began with a presentation of the Cost Action IPEMA, which aims to federate the research efforts conducted in Europe. After investigation in 21 European countries, the Castrum project evaluated the available methods for the anesthetizia/analgesia of animals during surgical castration. New results have been presented concerning the control of aggression and mounting behaviours that affect the welfare of entire male pigs. Advances have also been made in the area of boar taint control via genetics, nutrition, animal management or the use of an immunocastration vaccine. Finally, a study conducted within the framework of the Castrum project evaluated the sensitivity of production systems differentiated on product quality to the use of entire male pigs.


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