This project is a comprehensive approach at pork quality assessment as a function of feeding; state-of-the-art techniques and advanced methodologies (in particular, MRI) will be used to evaluate possible advantages of pig dietary manipulation for both farmers and consumers. A first possible advantage for local economy is the validation of a pork-quality improvement through feeding with a commercially available feed amenable to immediate use in the farm; given the relevance of pork production in the Verona region and the increasing attention of consumers to food quality, this would add significantly to the value of the goods produced. A second advantage would be the setting-up of a rapid, affordable and reliable testing protocol for meat quality, representing an opportunity for local farmers.
- Feeding two groups of pigs with standard feed or feed obtained by crops grown using BIOPRE products; slaughtering & dissection of selected muscles;
- Execution of the NMR imaging and spectroscopy protocols using pork of the two groups;
- Definition of the NMR pork quality parameters (water & fat content, composition, connective distribution etc);
- Morphological and histochemical analysis of pork meat (light & electron microscopy, fibres typifying etc);
- Evaluation of structural and composition differences in pork from the two groups.