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Ben Williams

Knowledge Transfer Senior Manager

AHDB Pork Knowledge Exchange


Email Ben

T: work 024 7647 8623

Effect of growth rate on pork eating quality-

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Research partners: AHDB Pork Pork Chain Unit (University of Bristol) and AHDB Pork Pig Development Centre (University of Leeds)

Industrial partners: Tulip supply group

Project duration: 2006 – 2008 

Aims and objectives

To investigate both objectively as well as subjectively whether pig growth rate has an impact on pork quality. 


  • Fast growing pigs produced more tender and juicy pork than slow growing pigs
  • At 110kg the growth rate effect on tenderness was significantly greater than at 90kg
  • Overall liking score at 110kg was significantly higher in fast than in slow growing pigs
  • There is no evidence that slow or interrupted growth increases boar taint prevalence
  • Levels of boar taint compounds were higher in fast growing males, but sensory analysis did not reflect a detrimental effect on flavour. 

Further information

Download final report - Effect of growth rate on pork eating quality