1. bookVolume 20 (2020): Issue 2 (April 2020)
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2300-8733
First Published
25 Nov 2011
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
Languages
English
access type Open Access

Effect of Electrical and Mechanical Stunning on Rabbit Meat Quality Traits

Published Online: 04 May 2020
Volume & Issue: Volume 20 (2020) - Issue 2 (April 2020)
Page range: 709 - 724
Received: 11 Jul 2019
Accepted: 28 Jan 2020
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2300-8733
First Published
25 Nov 2011
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
Languages
English
Abstract

Increased interest in the production of rabbit meat justifies the need to assess and improve the welfare of these animals not only during the production cycle but also at slaughter. Therefore, the aim of this study was to assess the effects of different stunning methods on the level of blood biochemical parameters (stress indicators), and meat quality of slaughter rabbits. Rabbits of the Hycole line (n = 60) were subjected to the following stunning methods: mechanical with a non-penetrating captive bolt (group I; n = 20), mechanical by hitting a narrow rod on the head (group II; n = 20), and electrical stunning (n = 20). In the stunning groups there were no differences found in the blood level of insulin, cortisol, glucose, total cholesterol, triglycerides, non-esterified fatty acids, and protein content (P>0.05). The stunning method did not affect the pH of rabbit meat (P=0.768), but significantly influenced the L* and b* colour parameters. The muscles of longissimus thoracis et lumborum, from the group of rabbits mechanically stunned by hitting a narrow rod on the head, were the darkest (L * = 58.4), with the lowest yellowness values (b* = 4.04). The meat of electrically stunned rabbits was characterised by higher drip loss (P<0.001), lower plasticity (P=0.043), and higher free water content (P=0.043). From the analysed texture measures, only the Warner Bratzler Shear Energy values of the cooked meat were affected by the stunning method. These values were higher in the meat of the mechanically stunned groups compared to the electrically stunned rabbits (P=0.042). The percentage of dry matter, crude protein, extractable fat and water to protein ratio, were affected only by the muscle type (P<0.001). To conclude, the rabbit meat was characterised by good quality, with only slight differences between the groups. No differences were found in the stress reaction of rabbits subjected to the examined stunning methods.

Keywords

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