A market basket survey for beef retail cut composition at the retail level (four stores each from two chains in each city) was conducted in 11 US cities from January to March 2006. Beef cuts (n = 17,495) were measured for external fat thickness with cuts from the chuck (0.05 cm), round (0.05 cm), and miscellaneous (0.04 cm) having less (P < 0.05) fat than cuts from the loin (0.11 cm) and rib (0.11 cm). Beef cuts (n = 1327) were separated physically into separable components with round cuts having more (P < 0.05) separable lean (96.63%) than chuck cuts (86.81%) and miscellaneous cuts (86.18%), which had more (P < 0.05) separable lean than loin cuts (84.53%) with rib cuts (69.34%) having the lowest (P < 0.05) separable lean. Chemical fat from the separable lean differed (P < 0.05) between each cut category: round cuts (3.71%), miscellaneous cuts (4.99%), loin cuts (5.60%), chuck cuts (6.90%), and rib cuts (8.61%). Ground beef samples (n = 235), with declared lean/fat percentages ranging from 73/27 to 96/4, had overall chemical fat values of 13.41% and moisture values of 67.42%. This survey documents the current beef retail cut and ground beef composition, which is helpful to those who need this information for various dietary and marketing purposes.


Animal Sciences



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