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Animals 2014, 4(3), 524-534; doi:10.3390/ani4030524

Effect of Transport Distance and Season on Some Defects of Fresh Hams Destined for DPO Production

Department of Agricultural and Food Science, School of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, University of Bologna, Via Fanin 50, 40127 Bologna, Italy
Department of Health, Animal Science and Food Safety, Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Milan, Via Celoria 10, 20133 Milan, Italy
OPAS, Pig Farmer Association, Strada Ghisiolo 57, 46030 San Giorgio, Mantua, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 June 2014 / Revised: 15 August 2014 / Accepted: 25 August 2014 / Published: 29 August 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pig Transport)
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Simple Summary

Transport to the slaughterhouse is a stressful event for pigs. Travel duration and conditions can negatively affect animal welfare and carcass quality. Some defects in fresh hams are strictly connected to pre-slaughter transportation. Journeys with short (<37 km) and long (>170 km) distances may increase damage in fresh hams and decrease Denomination Protected of Origin (DPO) Parma dry-cured ham production.


Pre-slaughter handling is related to defects in fresh hams that result in exclusion from the DPO Parma chain, including hematomas, lacerations, microhaemorrhages and veining. To determine the effects of transport conditions on hams, we collected data on defects in 901,990 trimmed fresh hams from heavy pigs provided by 3,650 batches from slaughterhouse during 2012 and 2013. For all batches, transport distance (1–276 km) season and year of delivery were considered. A decrease of all defect occurrences was observed for increasing distance up to 170 km (P < 0.05). Above 170 km, however, all defects frequencies increased (P < 0.05). Season showed an effect on the incidence of defects, with an increasing of hematomas and lacerations in winter and autumn respectively (P < 0.05) and the highest percentage of veining and hemorrhages in spring (P < 0.05). Summer had the lowest incidence of defects on fresh hams. We concluded that the incidence of the examined defects and the subsequent rejection for DPO Parma ham production is lower in fresh hams transported 38–170 km during the summer. View Full-Text
Keywords: pigs; transport; distance; season; DPO Parma ham; pre-slaughter handling; defect pigs; transport; distance; season; DPO Parma ham; pre-slaughter handling; defect
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Arduini, A.; Redaelli, V.; Luzi, F.; Dall'Olio, S.; Pace, V.; Costa, L.N. Effect of Transport Distance and Season on Some Defects of Fresh Hams Destined for DPO Production. Animals 2014, 4, 524-534.

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