Fatty acids in meat from cattle fattened in different production systems in the colombian tropics
AbstractBackground: Meat is a highly nutritious food and a major component of the basic food basket. Consumers select foods not only for taste and satisfaction, but also for their effects on human nutrition and health. In addition there is very little knowledge about the quality of meat produced in the Colombian systems and their fatty acid content which undoubtedly affect human health. Objetive: To determine the content and composition of fatty acids in meat from steers managed in different Colombian systems. Methods: Meat (Longissimus dorsi) samples were obtained from Zebu cattle from four production systems inthe Colombian tropics: Two silvopastoral arrangements (Cotové Research Center, National University of Colombia and Montenegro, Quindío), improved pastures (Montenegro, Quindío) and a traditional grazing system (Monteria, Cordoba). Fat was extracted from 64 meat samples in the laboratory of Analytical Chemistry of the National University of Colombia, and a quantitative analysis of fatty acids was performed by gas chromatography in the laboratory of Instrumental Analysis of the National University of Colombia in Medellin. The results were evaluated following a complete randomized design and means were separated by the Duncan test. Results: There were significant differences in the content of myristic and palmitic acids between meat from the traditional and improved pasture system, with both acids being higher in the traditional system. There were also differences in the content of linoleic and linolenic acid, being lower in the Cotové silvopastoral system. There were significant differences in the content of unsaturated acids, with the meat from silvopastoral system Quindío and the improved pastures showing the highest fatty acid saturated: polyunsaturated ratio (0.19). In the linoleic: α-linolenic ratio there were no differences. Conclusions: Although the composition and the fatty acid content in beef varied between systems evaluated, the main components of such systems fat were palmitic acid and oleic acid (30.73 and 35.62 g/100 g fatty acid).
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