Influence of extruded linseed on growth, carcass composition, and meat quality of slaughtered pigs at one hundred ten and one hundred sixty kilograms of liveweight.J Anim Sci 2008; 86(8):1850-60JA
The Western diet is characterized by a high intake of SFA relative to PUFA, and the consumption of n-3 PUFA is decreased relative to n-6 PUFA. Therefore, there has been much interest in recent years in ways to manipulate the fatty acid composition of meat. The objective of this work was to determine the effects of dietary extruded linseed, an n-3 PUFA source, on growth performance, carcass composition, meat quality, and oxidative stability of pigs slaughtered at 111.0 (+/-4.8) kg of BW and 160.0 (+/-9.2) kg of BW. The association of these factors with BW at slaughter was also examined. Forty barrows, 78.1 (+/-1.75) kg of initial BW, were fed a control diet (2.5% sunflower oil) or a linseed diet containing 5% of whole extruded linseed. Both diets contained 170 mg of vitamin E and 250 mug of selenium. Eight pigs from each dietary treatment were slaughtered at 110 kg of BW and the others at 160 kg of BW. There was no dietary effect (P > 0.05) on growth, carcass characteristics, meat quality, or the activity of malic enzyme in LM and backfat. Inclusion of linseed increased (P < 0.05) n-3 PUFA content in both LM and backfat and decreased the n-6:n-3 PUFA ratio from 12 to 4.5 in LM, and from 11 to 3 in backfat. Liveweight at slaughter significantly influenced carcass characteristics, meat quality, total lipid and oxidative stability of LM, malic enzyme activity in adipose tissue, and fatty acid content of LM and backfat. This study shows that the inclusion of linseed in swine diets may improve the fatty acid profile of pork without deleteriously affecting oxidation or color stability. Thus, such a feeding practice may improve human health based on the n-6:n-3 PUFA ratio recommended for the human diet.