Body Composition Evaluation

Predicting Carcass Retail Product in Beef Steers at Variable Fat Thickness Endpoints

  • Scott P. Greiner (Iowa State University)
  • Gene H. Rouse (Iowa State University)
  • Doyle E. Wilson (Iowa State University)
  • Larry V. Cundiff (U.S. Meat Animal Research Center)
  • Tommy L. Wheeler (U.S. Meat Animal Research Center)


Two hundred eighty-two crossbred steers were scanned with real-time ultrasound (RTU), slaughtered, and fabricated into retail cuts to determine the potential for a combination of live animal and ultrasound measures to predict carcass retail yield. Ultrasound measures of fat thickness, ribeye area, rump fat thickness, and body wall thickness, as well as live weight and visual muscle score were recorded three to five days prior to slaughter. Carcass measurements were taken, and one side of each carcass was fabricated into retail cuts with .3 inches of fat. Stepwise regression analysis was used to compare possible models for prediction of percent retail product from carcass measurements or a combination of live animal traits and ultrasound measures. Results indicate that possible prediction models for percent retail product using live animal and RTU measures were similar in their predictive power and accuracy when compared with models derived from carcass measurements across all fat thickness ranges. A larger proportion of the variation in percent retail product can be explained in steers with less than .4 inches fat cover (using either RTU and live animal measures or carcass measures) when compared with steers with greater than .4 inches fat thickness.

Keywords: ASL R1429

How to Cite:

Greiner, S. P., Rouse, G. H., Wilson, D. E., Cundiff, L. V. & Wheeler, T. L., (1998) “Predicting Carcass Retail Product in Beef Steers at Variable Fat Thickness Endpoints”, Iowa State University Animal Industry Report 1(1).

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Published on
01 Jan 1998
Peer Reviewed