J M Mehaffey

Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas, United States

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Publications (10)20.56 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The objective was to determine the microbial risks associated with condensation in harvest, fabrication, and ready-to-eat (RTE) meat processing environments. A total of 2281 samples were collected before and during operation from areas of visible condensation, overhead pipes, and dripping pans in three plants each season during a one-year period. Significant interactions between season and plant type were observed for nearly all microorganisms, resulting in counts that were generally higher in the summer compared to other seasons. Aerobic plate counts ranged from non-detectable to 3.7log cfu100mL(-1) of condensation. Overall counts were so low that data had to be converted to results100mL(-1). Coliforms and Enterococci were not detectable in most condensation samples. Yeast and mold averaged less than 3.0log cfu100mL(-1) in all samples. Listeria spp. or Salmonella were each detected in only two samples. Condensation, present in harvest, fabrication, and RTE meat processing areas does not appear to contain microbial loads that will contaminate the product.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2011 · Meat Science
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    ABSTRACT: Longissimus lumborum (LL) muscles from 117 steers plus LL, gluteus medius (GM), and triceps brachii (TB) muscles from 132 heifers were evaluated for effects of feeding duration of zilpaterol hydrochloride (Zilmax(R); ZH; 7.56g/907kg on a dry matter basis) and aging time on tenderness. Both genders were blocked by initial weight into six blocks of four pens. Pens were assigned to treatments of control (C), or 20, 30 or 40days on ZH, with a 3day withdrawal. Steaks from each subprimal were vacuum aged individually for 7, 14 or 21days, frozen, thawed, and cooked to 71 degrees C for Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF). All muscles from steers and heifers from ZH30 and ZH40 treatments had higher (P<0.05) WBSF than those of C. The WBSF of steer LL and heifer TB from the ZH20 treatment was higher (P<0.05) than C. There was a treatment by aging interaction (P>0.05) for WBSF of GM steaks from heifers. Percentage of intramuscular fat had little effect on tenderness. Percentages of steer LL and heifer TB steaks with WBSF values below thresholds of either 5.0 or 4.6kg from the ZH20 treatment were quite high, whereas percentages of heifer LL and GM muscles below 5.0kg (67%) and 4.6kg (57%) were low. Feeding ZH20days generally increased WBSF values, but mean WBSF values for steer LL and heifer TB were below 4.6kg. Feeding ZH 20days resulted in>40% of GM steaks with WBSF values above 4.6kg.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2010 · Meat Science
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    ABSTRACT: Two trials investigated zilpaterol hydrochloride (ZH) feeding duration, enhancement, blade tenderization, and postmortem aging effect on Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF; trial 1) and consumer sensory ratings (trial 2). For trial 1, USDA Select beef strip loins were obtained from carcasses of beef steers fed ZH (6.8 g/t on 90% DM) the last 0, 20, 30, or 40 d of the feeding period. One-half of each strip loin was enhanced (110%) with a brine solution, whereas the remaining portion was not enhanced. Both pieces were portioned into steaks, which were aged 7, 14, or 21 d for WBSF analysis. For trial 2, paired USDA Select beef strip loins were obtained from carcasses of beef steers fed ZH the last 0 or 20 d of feeding. Paired strip loins were fabricated into 4 pieces and assigned to control, moisture enhanced, blade tenderized, and blade tenderized + moisture enhanced treatments. Strip loin pieces were then portioned into steaks that were aged 14 or 21 d postmortem. Consumers panelists (n = 458) indicated their like or dislike of tenderness, juiciness, flavor, and overall like of each sample using 8-point, verbally anchored scales, as well as tenderness and overall acceptability. With exception of 20 d ZH-treated steaks, results from trial 1 indicate WBSF values decreased (P < 0.05) with enhancement. Among enhanced steaks, steaks from cattle fed ZH for 20, 30, and 40 d had greater (P < 0.05) WBSF values than controls. Among nonenhanced steaks, 20 d ZH-treated steaks had WBSF values similar to 0, 30, and 40 d ZH-treated steaks, whereas 30 and 40 d ZH-treated steaks had greater (P < 0.05) WBSF values than controls. Postmortem aging for 21 d improved (P < 0.05) WBSF values for all ZH durations when compared with 7-d aging treatments. Results from trial 2 indicate ZH feeding for 20 d had no effect on flavor scores, decreased tenderness scores (P < 0.05), and tended (P < 0.10) to decrease juiciness and overall like scores when compared with controls for steaks aged 14 d. After 21 d aging, steaks from 20 d ZH-fed cattle had reduced (P < 0.05) tenderness, juiciness, and overall like scores and tended (P < 0.10) to have decreased flavor scores when compared with controls. These results indicate enhancement improved WBSF, but was not sufficient to overcome the detrimental effect of ZH feeding duration on WBSF until steaks were aged for 21 d postmortem. Consumer scores indicate 20 d ZH feeding had no effect on overall acceptability, but decreased tenderness and tenderness acceptability scores when compared with controls.
    Full-text · Article · May 2010 · Journal of Animal Science
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    ABSTRACT: Beef knuckles (n=150) and center-cut top sirloin butts (n=150) were used to determine portion-controlled steak cutting yields, palatability characteristics, and consumer acceptance of rectus femoris (RF), vastus lateralis (VL), and gluteus medius (GM) steaks. Steak yields were higher (P<0.05) for top sirloins than knuckles. Trained sensory panel ratings for overall tenderness, juiciness, and flavor were similar between RF and GM. Consumer panel ratings for tenderness and juiciness were higher (P<0.05) for GM than RF; however, consumer perceptions of overall like and flavor were similar for GM and RF. Vastus lateralis received lower (P<0.05) trained panel and consumer ratings for all traits than either RF or GM. Palatability of VL will need improvement to be a viable foodservice offering. Yet, these data suggest that RF would amply substitute for GM in foodservice settings, and that knuckle steak yields would be adequate for foodservice applications.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2009 · Meat Science
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    ABSTRACT: The need to provide consumer data for beef steak tenderness, juiciness, flavor, and overall palatability ratings from zilpaterol hydrochloride (ZH) beef to the processor, retailers, restaurants, and consumers is paramount. Consumer palatability responses were studied for 14- and 21-d aged USDA Choice and USDA Select quality grade beef and USDA Choice calf-fed Holstein New York Strip steaks from cattle that had been fed ZH for 0, 20, and 30 d before slaughter. Strip loins were cut into 2.54-cm-thick New York strip steaks and assigned to a 14- or 21-d aging treatment. The first and fourth steaks were assigned for 14- or 21-d WBSF analysis, and the second, third, fifth, and sixth steaks were reserved for consumer sensory panel evaluation. Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF) analysis was conducted at Texas Tech University (TTU, Lubbock), Kansas State University (Manhattan), Oklahoma State University (Stillwater), and West Texas A&M University (Canyon) with values used to sort steaks for consumer evaluation. Slice shear force analysis was performed at TTU on available paired consumer steaks. Consumers (n = 3,007) in 4 metropolitan areas (Baltimore, MD/Washington, DC; Chicago, IL; Los Angeles, CA; and Lubbock, TX) were asked to rate tenderness, juiciness, flavor, and overall acceptability. Consumers were selected to represent a wide range of income, education, and ethnicity at each city. Steaks were cooked to a medium degree of doneness (71 degrees C), cut into 1 cm(3) pieces, and served warm to consumers. Consumers tasted samples from each of 3 separate steaks from each ZH treatment (0, 20, and 30 d) and within each USDA quality grade and within the 14- and 21-d aging treatments. Steaks were selected to represent the distribution of tenderness for the first, second, and third SD either side of the mean for each treatment. A second calf-fed Holstein consumer study (n = 240) was conducted with consumers eating USDA Choice 14- and 21-d aged steaks from Holstein cattle fed ZH for 0 or 20 d. Steaks from 0- and 20-d ZH treatments were different for tenderness for the 14-d aged USDA Choice and the calf-fed Holstein study groups. No differences were shown for all other 0- and 20-d ZH treatments for tenderness. The 21-d aged USDA Select steaks were improved with aging, which aided in removing the effects of ZH treatment. The ZH treatment of 30 d before slaughter resulted in increased WBSF values and decreased consumer tenderness, juiciness, and overall palatability ratings for 14-d-aged USDA Choice. No differences were shown for tenderness, juiciness, flavor, and overall palatability consumer ratings for 0- and 20-d steaks from 21-d Choice and 14- and 21-d Select quality and aging periods. Overall, USDA Choice Holstein steaks aged 14 and 21 d had differences in tenderness with ZH.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2009 · Journal of Animal Science
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    ABSTRACT: To determine the effects of zilpaterol hydrochloride (ZH; 6.8 g/t on 90% DM basis) feeding duration (0, 20, 30, and 40 d) on Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF) of longissimus lumborum (LL), triceps brachii (TB), and gluteus medius (GM) muscles, beef from feeding trials was collected and shipped to participating universities. Animals were slaughtered at commercial processing facilities across the United States. Strip loin, shoulder clod, and top sirloin butt subprimals (IMPS 180, 114, and 184, respectively) were obtained from a portion of USDA Choice and Select grade carcasses for WBSF using standardized procedures and equipment. Feeding ZH increased (P < 0.001) LL WBSF values of USDA Choice and Select steaks. A significant linear contrast existed for both quality grades, indicating increased WBSF values were associated with longer feeding durations. Increased postmortem aging decreased LL WBSF of control and treated steaks. Postmortem aging from 7 to 21 d decreased LL WBSF values by 17.6 and 16.4% for USDA Choice and Select steaks, respectively. The percentage of LL steaks from ZH-supplemented cattle with a WBSF value <4.5 kg was significantly less than control steaks for both quality grades. Postmortem aging from 7 to 21 d postmortem increased (P < 0.001) the percentage of LL Choice and Select steaks with WBSF <4.5 kg for all ZH feeding durations. Feeding ZH for 20, 30, or 40 d increased (P < 0.01) WBSF of USDA Choice TB and GM steaks compared with 0-d controls. Feeding ZH for 0, 20, and 40 d had a similar effect on WBSF of USDA Select GM steaks, and produced lesser values than steaks from cattle fed ZH for 30 d. Feeding ZH for 20, 30, and 40 d had no effect on WBSF values of USDA Select TB steaks. However, the 20-, 30-, and 40-d duration produced WBSF values greater (P < 0.05) than control (0 d) TB steaks. Postmortem aging decreased (P < 0.05) WBSF of USDA Choice and Select TB and GM steaks, but the percentage improvement in WBSF attributed to aging was less than observed for LL steaks. The results of this study indicate feeding ZH increased (P < 0.001) WBSF of LL, TB, and GM. The ZH feeding also decreased (P < 0.01) the percentage of steaks with WBSF <4.5 kg regardless of US quality grade, whereas postmortem aging increased (P < 0.01) the percentage of US Choice and Select steaks with WBSF <4.5 kg. Finally, postmortem aging reduced (P < 0.05) WBSF of steaks from ZH-supplemented beef cattle.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2009 · Journal of Animal Science
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    ABSTRACT: Preselected carcasses (n = 112) from feedlot steers fed zilpaterol hydrochloride (ZH; 8.33 mg/kg, DM basis) in a serial slaughter experiment were evaluated to determine the effects of ZH upon carcass cutability, composition, and tenderness. A 4 x 4 factorial arrangement of treatments in a completely random design was used with days on ZH (0, 20, 30, and 40 d before slaughter with a 3-d withdrawal) and days on the finishing diet (DOF; 136, 157, 177, and 198 d). No relevant ZH duration x slaughter group interactions were detected (P > 0.05) for carcass cutability, composition, or tenderness data. Exposure to ZH increased the lean yield of 22 of the 33 subprimals evaluated with every subprimal within the round showing increased cutability (P < or = 0.04). Carcass fat was decreased, whereas carcass protein and moisture were increased due to ZH (P < 0.01). Lengthening the ZH feeding period did not result in additive gains in subprimal yield or chemical composition (P > 0.05). Warner-Bratzler shear force analysis of the LM indicated that ZH caused a toughening effect (P < 0.01) regardless of the length of the aging period (7, 14, or 21 d). Extending the ZH dose duration caused a linear increase in Warner-Bratzler shear force at 7 (P = 0.06) and 21 d (P < 0.01) of aging. Within 10 min postmortem, samples (n = 48) were collected from the semimembranosus muscle for RNA isolation from 4 randomly selected steers from each treatment within the 157, 177, and 198 d slaughter groups. Feeding ZH did not alter beta1- or beta2-adrenergic receptor (AR), calpastatin (CAL), IGF-I, or myosin heavy chain (MHC) isoform I mRNA abundance (P > 0.10). There was a ZH duration x DOF interaction (P < 0.01) for the expression of MHC-IIa and -IIx. Expression of MHC-IIa was decreased in every ZH treatment within the 177 and 198 DOF groups (P < 0.02). Expression of MHC-IIx was increased in the 20-d ZH group in the 157 DOF group (P = 0.03), and the 40-d ZH group in the 177 (P = 0.10) and 198 (P = 0.03) DOF groups. There was a tendency for a linear decrease in CAL mRNA abundance as ZH duration increased (P = 0.07), and there was a linear increase in beta2-AR (P = 0.03) and CAL (P < 0.01) mRNA abundance as DOF increased. Collectively, the data indicate that ZH may influence net protein turnover by decreasing MHC-IIa mRNA transcription and possibly increasing MHC-IIx. Furthermore, a ZH feeding duration of 20 d appeared to be adequate for capturing lean yield benefits while limiting tenderness losses.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2009 · Journal of Animal Science
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    ABSTRACT: A total of 1,040 birds from 5 common commercial genetic broiler strains were raised and processed to analyze the effect of strain and deboning time on meat quality. The birds were processed at either 6 or 7 wk of age in 4 replications each. Carcasses were deboned at either 2 or 4 h postmortem (PM; n = 52 birds per treatment). Carcass and breast weights were measured on each bird to calculate breast yield. Muscle pH was measured at time of deboning. Fillets deboned at 4 h PM were measured for length, width, and height to evaluate footprint analysis. At 24 h PM, fillets were weighed to calculate drip loss, and color (L*) was also measured. The fillets were then cooked to 76 degrees C, and cook loss was calculated. Fillets were then subjected to shear analysis using the Meullenet-Owens razor shear method where shear energy (N x mm) was calculated to evaluate tenderness. The strains in this study were chosen for differences in yield; therefore, as expected, breast yield was significantly different among strains. Variation in meat quality attributes existed among strains deboned at 2 h PM, but there was no consistent relationship between meat quality and breast yield. However, at 4 h PM, fewer differences among strains existed in meat quality characteristics (tenderness, water holding capacity, and pH). As expected, deboning at 2 h PM resulted in higher shear energy, higher muscle pH, and lower L* value compared with deboning at 4 h PM in all but one strain. However, water-holding capacity was not affected by deboning time at either age interval. Footprint analysis showed that most differences among strains were in heights measured at the fillet midpoint and caudal end. These results suggest that early deboning may affect meat quality of broiler strains differently, resulting in greater variation within the industry.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2006 · Poultry Science
  • R.T. Baublits · J-F Meullenet · J.T. Sawyer · J.M. Mehaffey · A Saha
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    ABSTRACT: Fresh pork loins (n=15; muscle sections, n=30) were utilized to evaluate the effects of pump rate (0%, 6%, or 12%) with a solution of sodium tripolyphosphate and sodium chloride (0.4% and 1.0% targeted final product concentrations, respectively), and cooked endpoint internal temperature (71 or 82°C) on instrumental texture, descriptive sensory profiles and consumer acceptance. Loins enhanced at a 12% pump rate had a higher (P<0.05) pH than untreated loins. While there were no differences in Warner-Bratzler shear force due to cooked endpoint temperature, chops enhanced at a 12% pump rate had lower (P<0.05) shear force values than untreated chops. Additionally, chops enhanced at 6% or 12% pump rates had lower (P<0.05) razor shear force values than untreated chops. Descriptive sensory analyses revealed that chops cooked to 71°C had a more intense (P<0.05) blood serum flavor than chops cooked to 82°C. Consumers found chops cooked to 82°C to have a more acceptable overall flavor than chops cooked to 71°C. Untreated chops had less intense (P<0.05) pork fat flavor, and more intense (P<0.05) blood serum, livery, and cardboard or oxidized flavor characteristics than chops enhanced at 6% or 12% pump rates. Additionally, sensory panelists reported chops enhanced at 6% or 12% pump rates to generally be more tender than untreated chops. Consumers reported a higher (P<0.05) overall acceptability for chops enhanced at 6% or 12% pump rates. Furthermore, both sensory panelists and consumers reported chops enhanced at 6% or 12% pump rates to be similar (P>0.05) in juiciness, regardless of endpoint temperature. However, untreated chops cooked to 82°C were less juicy (P<0.05) than untreated chops cooked to 71°C, suggesting retained palatability when enhanced chops are cooked to more abusive temperatures.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2006 · Meat Science
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    ABSTRACT: Ractopamine hydrochloride (Elanco, Greenfield, IN) and Zilmax (zilpaterol hydrochloride; Intervet/Schering-Plough, Millsboro, DE) are β-adrenergic agonists approved in the United States and several other countries to increase growth rate, improve efficiency of feed utilization, and increase carcass meat yield. Zilmax has been shown to improve feed efficiency by 26% and increase hot carcass weight, longissimus muscle area, and meat yield. However, a few studies have shown that Zilmax significantly increased Warner-Bratzler shear force values (decreased tenderness). The objectives of our research were to determine the effects of supplementing feedlot diets of steers and heifers with Zilmax for 0, 20, 30, or 40 days before harvest and the subsequent effects of 7, 14, and 21 days of aging on tenderness of steer and heifer Longissimus lumborum (from strip loins) and heifer Triceps brachii (from chuck clods) and Gluteus medius (from top sirloin butts) muscles.
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Publication Stats

130 Citations
20.56 Total Impact Points


  • 2009-2011
    • Texas Tech University
      • Department of Animal and Food Sciences
      Lubbock, Texas, United States
  • 2006
    • University of Arkansas
      • Department of Poultry Science
      Fayetteville, Arkansas, United States
    • Auburn University
      • Department of Poultry Science
      AUO, Alabama, United States