The current EUROP beef carcass classification scheme is still largely dependent on visually assessed fatness and conformation and its purpose is to provide a common basis for the description of carcasses for use in trade, price reporting and intervention. The meat industry, however, aims for accurately predicted saleable meat yield (SMY%) to which the EUROP carcass classification shows highly variable correlations due in part to the variable distribution of fat throughout the carcass as affected by breed, sex, diet, and the level of fat trimming. Video image analysis (VIA) technology is capable of improving the precision and accuracy of SMY% prediction even for specific carcass joints and simultaneously mimics the visual assessment to comply with EU regulations on carcass classification. This review summarises the development and use of VIA for evaluation of beef carcasses and discusses the advantages and shortfalls of the technology and its application. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
- Video image analysis