Effects of dietary supplementation of feedlot steers with vitamins E and D3 on live performance, carcass traits, shelf-life attributes and longissimus muscle tenderness

Vargas, D.N.; Down, A.E.; Webb, D.S.; Han, H.; Morgan, J.B.; Dolezal, H.G.

Animal Science Research Report Agricultural Experiment Station, Oklahoma State University ( P-973): 59-66


Accession: 003425678

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Cattle (n=119) were divided into four dietary treatment groups: Control, Vitamin D3, Vitamin E and Vitamin E and D. Treatments Vitamin E and Vitamin E and D were supplemented with 1000 IU/head daily of vitamin E for the final 54 days of the feeding period. Steers in the Vitamin D and Vitamin E and D groups received 6 x 106 IU/head daily of vitamin D for the final 6.5 days prior to slaughter. Strip loins were divided into four sections and stored in refrigerated conditions for 7, 14, 21 or 28 days. At the end of each aging period steaks were cut for Warner-Bratzler shear force determination and shelf-life analysis. Shear force values were higher for Control steaks compared with all other treatments. After 7 days of aging, Vitamin D steaks had lower shear force values than those in the Vitamin E treatment group. Additionally, steaks from the Vitamin D and Vitamin E and D groups required fewer aging days to become "very tender" relative to Control and Vitamin E treatments. Lean colour scores were higher at display days 4, 5 and 6 for steaks from cattle fed vitamin E when compared with non-vitamin E supplemented treatments. Redness values were higher for Vitamin E and Vitamin E and D steaks when compared with Control and Vitamin D treatments, while yellowness values were higher for steaks from cattle in the Vitamin E group relative to all other treatments. Steaks in the Vitamin D and Vitamin E and D groups remained acceptable in the retail case longer after reaching 8.5 lb of shear force than Vitamin E or Control treatments. Therefore, in order to optimize the "colour-tenderness relationship" of beef, it is recommended that finishing cattle be supplemented with both vitamins E and D3.