U.S. Department of Agriculture: Agricultural Research Service, Lincoln, Nebraska


Date of this Version


Document Type



J. Anim. Sci. 2004. 82:1177–1189


Copyright 2004 American Society of Animal Science. All rights reserved.


Carcass (n = 568) and longissimus thoracis palatability (n = 460) traits from F1 steers obtained from mating Hereford (H), Angus (A), and U.S. Meat Animal Research Center (U.S. Meat Animal Research Center) III cows to H, A, Norwegian Red (NR), Swedish Red and White (RW), Friesian (F), or Wagyu (W) sires were compared. Data were adjusted to constant age (471 d), carcass weight (356 kg), fat thickness (1.0 cm), percentage of fat trim (24%), and marbling (Small35) end points. For Warner-Bratzler shear force and trained sensory panel traits, data were obtained on longissimus thoracis steaks stored at 2°C for 14 d postmortem. The following comparisons were from the age-constant end point. Carcasses from H- and A-sired steers (377 and 374 kg, respectively) were the heaviest (P < 0.05) and carcasses from W-sired steers (334 kg) were the lightest (P < 0.05). A greater (P < 0.05) percentage of carcasses from Aand W-sired steers graded USDA Choice (88 and 85%, respectively) than carcasses from other sire breeds (52 to 71%). Adjusted fat thickness for carcasses from Asired steers (1.3 cm) was highest (P < 0.05), followed by H-sired steers (1.1 cm) and W- and F-sired steers (0.9 cm); NR- and RW-sired steers (0.8 cm) had the lowest (P < 0.05) adjusted fat thickness. Longissimus thoracis area was not different (P > 0.05) among sire breeds (mean = 80.6 cm2). Carcass yield of boneless, totally trimmed retail product was least (P < 0.05) for A-sired steers (60.1%), intermediate for H-sired steers (61.5%), and similar (P > 0.05) for all other sire breeds (62.5 to 62.8%). Longissimus thoracis steaks from carcasses of A- (3.7 kg) and W-sired (3.7 kg) steers had lower (P < 0.05) shear force values than longissimus thoracis steaks from other sire breeds (4.1 to 4.2 kg). Trained sensory panel tenderness, juiciness, or beef flavor intensity ratings for longissimus thoracis steaks did not differ (P > 0.05) among the sire breeds. Sire breed comparisons were affected by adjusting data to other end points. Heritability estimates for various carcass, yield, and palatability traits ranged from very low (h2 = 0.06 for percentage of kidney, pelvic, and heart fat) to relatively high (h2 = 0.71 for percentage of retail product yield). Relative to the other sire breeds, Wsired steers had the highest percentage of USDA Choice, Yield grade 1 and 2 carcasses, but their carcasses were the lightest.