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Does the chicken genotype ‘Géline de Touraine’ have specific carcass and meat characteristics?

Abstract : The aim of this study was to determine the specific characteristics of carcass and meat from an old French chicken breed, the 'Geline de Touraine' (GT), characterised by a very slow-growing rate and usually slaughtered at 120 days of age. For this purpose, we compared the GT with an experimental crossbreed (EC) exhibiting the same growth rate, and with a 'Label rouge' (LR) genotype usually slaughtered at 84 days of age. A total of 250 males and 250 females per genotype were reared by separating sexes and genotypes. The growth performances were recorded. At 84 days of age, 80 birds per sex and per genotype were slaughtered. The frequency of clawing and pecking injuries on the carcass was noted. We also measured the skin colour and the thickness of wing membrane. The relative percentages of carcass, breast, thigh + drumstick, abdominal fat, testis or ovary to body weight were determined. On breast and thigh muscles the ultimate pH (pHu) and colour were measured. The juice loss after 3 days' storage at + 4 degrees C and after cooking at 85 degrees C, and the shear force value of Warner-Bratzler were only measured on breast muscles. At 120 days of age, we repeated the same measurements but only on EC and GT genotypes in order to compare birds at the same age or at the respective slaughter age for each production. Whatever the slaughter age, the body weight of males was always higher than that of the females but the carcass yield was similar for both sexes. The females had higher breast yield and carcass fatness but lower thigh + drumstick yield than the males. The yellowness of skin and meat was higher for the females than for the males while the contrary was observed for the redness of the meat. The breast meat of the females also had higher cooking loss than that of the males. GT and EC birds exhibited a higher occurrence of carcass defects and a higher pHu in meat than LR birds. The GT chickens were characterised by a lower breast yield, a higher fattiness and an earlier sexual maturity than the other genotypes, which could confer typical sensorial attributes to their meat. Finally, the EC chickens exhibited a skin and a meat more coloured than the other genotypes, particularly for yellowness, a character which could be under genetic control.
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Elisabeth Baéza, Pascal P. Chartrin, Elisabeth Le Bihan-Duval, Michel Lessire, Joël Besnard, et al.. Does the chicken genotype ‘Géline de Touraine’ have specific carcass and meat characteristics?. Animal, 2009, 3 (5), pp.764-771. ⟨10.1017/S1751731109004029⟩. ⟨hal-02664690⟩



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