Research has shown that there are three endogenous substances that can cause boar taint: androstenone, skatole and indole. The amount of androstenone and skatole is genetically determined. This means that breeding management and genetic selection provide longer-term perspective.
As of today all terminal boars by Nucléus – PIETRAIN and VIGOR – are INO certified. This means: without risk of odour transmission. The INO label is based on the …
Boar taint prevalence has been reduced from approximately 3% to 1% in the last five years. This is a conclusion of a study on the Dutch pork supply chain that …
Recombinetics/Acceligen and Hendrix Genetics have announced that they successfully used a genome editing method for pigs that remain in a pre-pubertal state, thus eliminating the need for surgical castration. The …
In Germany Diana Engesser conducted an excellent bibliographic work on practical solutions to use entire male meat and boar tainted meat in particular. A summary of her thesis work in 2015 has been published in the 2017 edition of Fleischwirtschaft. An efficient method to decrease levels of androstenone and skatole as main components of boar taint is the thermal process. Cooked ham for example reached a skatole elimination and a decreasing of androstenone by 29% to 60%. Processing the meat – like smoking and curing – also reached good results, especially when consumed cold at a temperature of about 23 0C. Smoke had also a distinct masking effect when consuming at a temperature of 20 0C.
The five-year Dutch research program ‘stopping the castration of piglets’ was started in 2009. The research results have provided important directions for solutions. The scientists involved have gradually unravelled the consumer response to products from entire male pigs, which is important for the appropriate use of detection methods. We have also identified the factors that determine successful boar management on the farm. Although still some challenges remain to be solved, we are convinced that we are on the right track towards a more sustainable production and marketing of pork products. This report summarizes the knowledge gained up to the present.Further information can be found in the reports of various studies, to which reference is made in the text. We hope that sharing our knowledge with experts throughout the member states of the European Union contributes to the ambition of stopping piglet castration.
Gé Backus On 25 June 2013, 200 Germans and 1 Dutchman met in the Jerusalemkirche in Berlin to discuss the theme of ‘Verzicht auf betübungslose Ferkelkastration’ (stopping the unanaesthetised castration …
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