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Title: Soft pork studies : preliminary report
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Title: Soft pork studies : preliminary report
Uniform Title: Bulletin 157 ; Florida Agricultural Experiment Station
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Creator: Scott, John M.
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: June, 1920
Copyright Date: 1920
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Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
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Bulletin 157


UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA

Agricultural Experiment Station











SOFT PORK STUDIES

PRELIMINARY REPORT

By

JOHN M. SCOTT


Bulletins will be sent free upon request to Experiment Station,
GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA.


June, 1920








SOFT PORK STUDIES
PRELIMINARY REPORT
By JOHN M. SCOTT


INTRODUCTION
The results of the experiment as given in this bulletin will be
of interest to all hog raisers of the Southern States, as it gives
evidence that the soft pork problem may not be so difficult to solve
as many have considered it. It is of interest to those engaged in
research, as it opens up a new line of work for investigation.
Some of the problems are: Does heredity have any influence in
producing soft pork? Does the rapidity of gain in weight during
the finishing period have any influence? Does the kind of fat
in the feed have any effect in producing soft pork? These and
other questions must be answered before the soft pork question
is finally settled.
It appears that the following report is the first one showing
results obtained by work of this particular kind. This fact
alone adds interest.
This report is made possible through the help given by other
departments. The samples of fat were taken by Dr. A. L.
Shealey of the Veterinary Department, College of Agriculture,
University of Florida. The melting point of the fat was made
in the Chemical Laboratory, Florida Agricultural Experiment
Station.
During the past three or four years the Florida Agricultural
Experiment Station has been conducting feeding experiments to
determine, if possible, what percentage of the ration can be of
peanuts or peanut meal and still produce hard pork. Altho
a number of experiments were conducted no very definite con-
clusion could be drawn from the results. This was due to the
fact that in nearly all the experiments, regardless of what the
hogs were fed, some hogs in each lot would chill hard and some
would remain soft after being in the cooler for 48 hours. This
led to the belief that perhaps there were other factors aside from
the feed that might have an effect in producing hard or soft pork.
In other words, some hogs might produce soft pork no matter
what the feeds were.
The all important question was to determine, before the feed-
ing experiment began, whether the hogs to be used in the future
feeding experiments were hard or soft. This was done by taking






Flbrida Agricultural Experiment Station


a sample of fat from each hog that was to be used in the future
feeding experiments. The melting point of the fat from each
sample was then determined in the usual manner. All fat
samples were rendered at a temperature of 1100C.
This, it is believed, is the first report of results obtained from
taking samples of fat from live hogs, and determining the melt-
ing point of the fat before starting the feeding experiments.
The samples of fat were taken from the posterior part of the
ham. An incision about two inches long was made, and a piece
of fat taken obt. No muscular tissue was removed with the fat
sample. The Isamples after being rendered each gave about one-
eighth of an ounce of fat. It was found that it was not advisa-
ble to take samples from exactly the same place each time, so
they were taken first from the right side, then from the left.
Where it was found necessary to take the third or fourth sample,
these were taken just a little to one side from where the first or
second sample was taken. The place of making the incision was
thoroly disinfected before and after the operation; usually
two stitches were taken to close up this incision. Much to our
surprise we found that the taking of the samples did not inter-
fere with the making of normal gains by the hogs during the
experiment.
The results reported in this bulletin should not be considered
conclusive evidence as to what effect certain feeds have on chang-
ing the melting point of the fat. This is due to the fact that the
experiments here reported have been conducted with only three
animals in each lot, or a totalof nine hogs. A much larger num-
ber of animals would have been used had sufficient funds been
available. These results do give important information that has
not been available heretofore. Also information is given as to the
melting point of the fat of individual hogs at the beginning, dur-
ing, and at the end of the feeding experiment. Without knowing
the melting point of the fat at the beginning of the experiment
it is impossible to know what effect the feed might have on rais-
ing or lowering the melting point of the fat, but with this infor-
mation the problem is greatly simplified. The results show that
there was a difference of as much as 50C. in the melting point
of the fat from different individual hogs raised under the same
conditions and on the same feeds.
FEEDING TEST
The feeding experiment began March 8, 1920, and was divided
into two parts, each part lasting forty-four days. Each pig was







Bulletin 157, Soft Pork Studies


marked so that it could be identified. A record of the individual
weights and gains was kept.
All the pigs used in this experiment were of about the same
age, being about eleven months old at the beginning of the test.
Nine pigs, of which the melting point of the fat had been deter-
mined, were selected for the experiment. These nine pigs were
separated into three lots of three pigs each, two barrows and one
sow in each lot.
FEEDS GIVEN
Lot I was fed peanuts only for forty-four days. Lot II was
fed corn and shorts, equal parts by weight, and bright cottonseed
meal, equal in weight to one-eighth of the corn and shorts. Lot
III was fed corn, shorts and peanut meal, with the hulls, equal
parts by weight. In addition to this grain ration lot III was
given one and one-half gallons of skim milk daily.

WEIGHING
All weights given in this bulletin are the average of weights
taken on three consecutive days.

TABLE 17.-PIG FEEDING EXPERIMENTS IN SOFT PORK STUDIES
Lot I.-Fed peanuts only
Differ-
SGain in ence in
Meltin weight Melting melting
Pig eight point of Weight in 44 point of point of
No. Date Age pounds Sex fat 1I Date poundsIdays lbs. fat fat
3 Mch. 811 mos. 135 male I40.5C IApr. 20 173.3 38.3 35.0C -5.5C
4 Mch. 11 mos. 110 female 40.1C Apr. 20 140.0 30.0 37.00C -3.10C
7 Mch. 8 11 mos 140 ale 40.5C Apr. 20 171.6 31.6 36.10C -4.4C
Lot II.-Fed corn and shorts equal parts by weight and 1-8 cottonseed meal
2 Mch. 811 mos. 130 male 39.3C Apr. 20 165.0 35.0 44.30C -15.0C
5 Mch. 8 11 mos. 100 male 37.5C Apr. 20 133.3 33.3 41.2C 3.7C
6 Mch. 8 11 mos. 130 female 37.8C0 Apr. 20 173.3 43.3 39.500C -1.70C
Lot III.-Fed corn, shorts and peanut meal, equal parts by weight and
1%/ gallons skimmed milk
1 Mch. 8 11 mos. 155 male 37.10 Apr. 20 216.6 61.6 38.90C .8C
8 Mh. 8 11 s. I 125 male 36.400 Apr. 20 176.6 51.6 39.20C -2.80C
Mch. 8 11 mos. 75 female 35.500 Apr. 20 108.3 33.3 39.70C -4.20C

Table 17 gives in detail the date, age, weight, sex and melting
point of fat of the nine pigs used in the experiment. The data
given in the table is for the first half of the experiment. This
shows that the pigs in Lot I were of the same age, of nearly
equal weight, and that the melting point of the fat was very
nearly the same.
From March 8 until April 20, 1920, a period of 44 days, the
pigs in Lot I were fed white Spanish peanuts only. During this






Florida Agricultural Experiment Station


time the three pigs, numbers 3, 4 and 7, made fairly satisfactory
gains, so far as gain in weight was concerned.
The important fact in the table is that the melting point of the
fat of pig No. 3 was lowered 5.50C. (9.90F.); pig No. 4, 3.1C.
(5.50F.) and pig No. 7, 4.40C. (7.90F.) after being fed peanuts
only for forty-four days. In other words, the feeding of pea-
nuts only had a very marked effect on lowering the melting point,
or softening the fat.
The results of lot II, fed corn and shorts equal parts by
weight, and one-eighth bright cottonseed meal, are interesting.
After feeding the above ration for forty-four days there was a
satisfactory gain in weight of each animal. In fact, they made
better gains in weight than did the pigs in lot I. The all im-
portant fact is that the ration had a very marked effect on
hardening or raising the melting point of the fat of each hog in
this lot, the difference being from 1.70C. to 50C. The melting
point of the fat of pig No. 2 was raised 50C. (90F.) ; pig No.
5, 3.7C. (6.60F.) and pig No. 6, 1.7C. (3F.).
It is evident that a ration of corn, shorts and cottonseed meal
will produce hard pork.
Lot III, fed corn, shorts and peanut meal, with the hulls, equal
parts by weight, and skim milk, made better gains in weight
than did the pigs in either of the other lots. This ration also had
a marked effect on hardening the fat of each pig. The melting
point of the fat was raised from 1.8C. to 4.20C. The melting
point of the fat of pig No. 1 was raised 1.80C. (3.2F.) ; pig. No.
8, 2.8C. (5F.), and pig No. 9, 4.2C. (7.50F.).

REVERSING THE FEEDS
As stated before, this experiment was divided into two parts.
The first part of the experiment closed April 20, 1920. The
second part began on April 23, 1920, and continued for forty-
four days, closing June 7, 1920. The same hogs were used
thruout both parts of the experiment.
On April 23, 1920, the feeds for the three lots were reversed.
The feed for lot I was changed from peanuts only to corn, shorts,
peanut meal with hulls, equal parts by weight, and one and one-
half gallons skim milk daily. The feed for lot II was changed
from corn and shorts, equal parts by weight, and one-eighth
cottonseed meal, to peanuts only. The feed for lot III was
changed from corn, shorts, peanut meal with hulls and skim
milk, to corn and shorts equal parts by weight, and one-eighth







Bulletin 157, Soft Pork Studies


bright cottonseed meal. These changes in feed were made so as
to make a further study of how feeds influence the melting point
of fat.

TABLE 18.-PIG FEEDING EXPERIMENT, WEIGHTS, GAINS AND MELTING
POINT OF FAT
Lot I.-Pigs Fed Corn, Shorts, Peanut Meal and 1% Gallons Skim Milk
Differ-
Gain i ence in
Melting weight Melting melting
Pig Weight point of Weight in 44 point of point of
No. Date pounds Sex fat Date pounds days lbs. fat fat
3 April 23 173.3 male R35.0C June 7 246.6 73.3 39.1C -14.1C
4 pril 23 140.0 female 37.00C June 7 196.6 56.6 38.10C 4-1.1C
7 April 23 171.6 male 36.10C June 7 220.0 48.4 39.00C -2.9C
Lot II.-Pigs fed peanuts only
2 April 23 165.0 male 44.3C June 7 166.6 1.6 41.6C -2.70C
5 April 23 133.3 male 41.2C June 7 150.0 16.7 43.20C --2.00C
6 April 23 173.3 female 39.5C June 7 130.0 -43.0 [ 37.5C0 -2.0C
Lot III.-Pigs fed corn, shorts, equal parts by weight and 1-8 cottonseed meal
1 April 216.6
1 April 231 216.6 male 38.90C June 7 263.3 36.7 40.000 1.1oc
8 April 23 176.6 male 39.200 June 7 220.0 43.4 40.20C +1.0C
9 April 231 108.3 female 39.70C June 7 128.3 20.0 42.000C 2.30C

Table 18 gives the date, weight, sex, melting point of the fat,
gain in weight, and the difference in the melting point of the fat,
Hogs in all lots, except lot II, made satisfactory gains during
the second part of the experiment. It is difficult to give any
reason or explanation just why the hogs in lot II failed to make
satisfactory gains. The loss in weight of sow No. 6 can be ex-
plained. During the early part of this feeding period, April 28,
Sow No. 6 farrowed a litter of five pigs and nursed them during
the remainder of the experiment.
A glance at Table 18 shows that when the hogs in lot I, which
had been fed only peanuts for a period of forty-four days, were
changed to a feed of corn, shorts, peanut meal, with hulls, and
skim milk, the melting point of the fat was raised, or in other
words, the fat was hardened to a noticeable extent. The melting
point of the fat of pig No. 3, after being fed peanuts for forty-
four days, was 35C. (950F.). After being fed a ration of corn,
shorts, peanut meal, with hulls and skim milk for forty-four
days the melting point of the fat was raised to 39.10C. (102.30F.)
or a difference of 4.1C. (7.3F.).
The melting point of the fat of pig No. 4, after being fed pea-
nuts for forty-four days, was 370C. (980F.). After being fed
corn, shorts, peanut meal with the hulls, and skim milk for forty-
four days, the melting point of the fat was raised to 38.10C.
(100.5oF.) or a difference of 1.10C. (20F.).







Florida Ayi, hiclItral Experiment Station


The melting point of the fat of pig No. 7, after being fed pea-
nuts for forty-four days, was 36.1C. (96.90F.). After being
fed corn, shorts, peanut meal, with hulls and skim milk for forty-
four days, the melting point of the fat was 39.00C. (102.2F.),
or a difference of 2.90C. (5.20F.).
This shows clearly that the fat of peanut fed hogs can be
hardened to a marked degree by feeding a ration of corn, shorts.
peanut meal with hulls and skim milk. The table also shows that
the melting point of the fat can be lowered, i. e., made softer, by
feeding peanuts. However, pig No. 5 seems to be an exception.
It is difficult to explain why in this case the feeding of peanuts
only did not lower the melting point of the fat. It may be a case
of the individuality of the hog. The table also shows that the
ration of corn, shorts and bright cottonseed meal raised the melt-
ing point of the fat; that is, hardened the fat.

TABLE 19.-SHOWING EFFECT OF FEED ON MELTING POINT OF FAT
SMelting Melting Melting
Pig Weighpoint of Weigh point of Weight point of
No. Date in lbs. fat I Date in Ibs. fat I Date in lbs. fat
Fed corn, shorts, peanut
Fed peanuts only for 44 days. meal and skim milk 44
days.
3 March 8 135.0 40.5 April 2 173.0 3.00C June 7 246.6 39.1
4 March 8 110.0 40.1, ;1 23 140.0 37.00C June 7 196.6 38.1C
7 March 8 140.0 40.50,- iA 23 171.0 36.1C IJune 7 220.0 39.0C
Fed corn, shorts and cottonseed meal for 44 days. Fed peanuts only 44
days.
2 March 8 130.0 39.3 April 23 165.0 44.300C June 7 166.6 41.60C
5 March 8 100.0 37.00C April 23 133.3 41.20C June 7 150.0 43.2C
6 March 8 130.0 37.80C April 23 173.3 39.50C June 7 130.0 37.5C
Fed corn, shorts, peanut meal and skim milk 44 days. Fed corn, shorts and
cottonseed meal 44 days.
1 March 8 155.0 37.10C IApril 231 216.6 38.900 June 7 253.3 40.000
8 March 8125.0 36.400 April 23 176.6 39.2C June 220.0 40.2
9 March 8 75.0 35.5C April 23 108.3 39.70C June 7 128.3 42.0C

Table 19 shows at a glance the effect of the feed on the melting
point of the fat. The melting point of the fat of pigs Nos. 3, 4
and 7 at the beginning of the test was 40.50, 40.10 and 40.5C.,
respectively. After being fed peanuts only for forty-four days
the melting point of the fat was 350, 370 and 36.10C. The feed-
ing of peanuts had a very softening effect on the fat. From
April 23 to June 7 these three hogs were fed corn, shorts, pea-
nut meal and skim milk. On June 7 the melting point of the fat
was 39.10, 88.10 and 39.0C. That is, the feeding of corn,




TABLE 20.-SHOWING DATE, SEX, AGE, WEIGHT, FEEDS FED, BREED, CONDI-
TION AND MELTING POINT OF FAT TAKEN FROM LIVE HOGS


(Ear mark or num-
Date her and sex

1920 Sow-
Jan. 21 R. ear cropped.......
Sow-
Jan. 21 Both ears cropped
Sow-
Jan. 21 Hole in both ears..

Feb. 141 barrow .............
Feb. 14 2 barrow ................
Feb. 143 barrow ................
Feb. 144 sow .....................
Feb. 14 5 barrow ................
Feb. 14 6 sow ................
Feb. 14 7 barrow ..............
Feb. 148 barrow ................
Feb. 14 9 sow ................
Feb. 14 10 sow ..................
Feb. 14 11......-............
F eb. 14 12 ..........................
Feb. 1413 ----- -
Feb. 14 13 ............. ...... ......
Feb. 1415 sow... .... .............. 1
Feb. 14 16 sow ...............I...

Feb. 1416 sow ..................
Feb. 1418 .............................
Feb. 14 18 ..........................
B eb. 1 19 .............................
Feb. 1420 boar ..................
Feb. 1421 sow ..........-....

Feb. 1423.............. ........
Feb. 1424-...... -..........
Feb. 14 25................. ....
Feb. 14 26.................-


Over
3 years
Over
3 years
Over
3 years

11 mos.
11 mos.
11 mos.
11 mos.
11 mos.
11 mos.
11 mos.
11 mos.
11 mos.0
% yrs.
4 mos.
4 mos.
4 mos.
4 mos.
1/2 yrs.

% yrs.

4 mos.
4 mos.
4 mos.
2 years
2 years

4 weeks
4 weeks
Seeks
4 weeks


IWeight
pounds


Feeds Fed

Breed

% corn, % velvet beans............................... Berkshire

corn, % velvet beans............................ .... Berkshire

% corn, % velvet beans...-..... ........ Berkshire


2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal
% corn, % velvet beans...............................


Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire
Tamwortl
Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire
Berkshire


% corn, % velvet beans................................. Berkshire


2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal Berkshire
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal Berkshire
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal Berkshire
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal Berkshire
2 parts corn, 3 parts shorts, 1 part peanut meal Berkshire

Nursing mother ................................. .... Berkshire
Nursing mother .............................- Berkshire
Nursing mother ...... ......... ................ Berkshirel
Nursing mother .. .................. ..... Berkshire


Melting
point of
fat; deg.
SCondition ICentigrade

Good 34.2

Good 39.5


I


Thin in flesh, just
weaned pigs....
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Good
Under size
Under size, thin
in flesh
Under size, thin
in flesh
Fairly good
Fairly good
Good
Good
Nursing litter of
pigs
Good
Good
Good
Good


37.1.
37.1
39.3
40.5
40.1
37.5
37.8
40.5
36.4
35.5
38.4
38.4
36.0
37.6
34.7

40.5

40.8
38.1
33.4
37.9
40.1

44.2
27.5
26.3
35.6
34.5






Florida Agricultural Experiment Station


shorts, peanut meal and skim milk hardened the fat to some
extent.
The melting point of the fat of pigs Nos. 2, 5 and 6 at the
beginning of the test was 39.30, 37.50 and 37.80C. After being
fed corn, shorts and cottonseed meal for forty-four days the
melting point was 44.30, 41.20 and 39.50C. This shows that the
ration fed had a very marked effect on raising the melting point
of the fat. From April 23 to June 7 these three pigs were fed
peanuts only. On June 7 the melting point of the fat was 41.60,
43.2 and 37.50C. This shows that the feeding of peanuts only
had a softening effect on the fat of the two pigs, but not on the
third.
The melting point of the fat of pigs Nos. 1, 8 and 9 at the
beginning of the test was 87.1, 36.40 and 35.50C. After feed-
ing corn, shorts, peanut meal and skim milk for forty-four days
the melting point of the fat was 38.90, 39.20 and 39.70C. After
feeding corn, shorts and cottonseed meal for forty-four days the
melting point of the fat was raised to 400, 40.20 and 420C.

SOME COMPARISONS
Table 20 will be found of considerable interest as it gives data
regarding all hogs from which samples of fat were taken, and
the melting point determined. Hogs No. 1 to 9, inclusive, were
the hogs used in the experiment reported in this bulletin.
This data shows the wide variation in the melting point of
the fat from the different individual hogs. A part of this varia-
tion may be due to the age of the animals. In other cases it is
impossible to give any satisfactory explanation.
There is one point in the table that is of more than usual
interest; that is, the melting point of the fat of Nos. 20 and 21,
also Nos. 23 to 26, inclusive. No. 20 is the sire and No. 21 is the
dam of Nos. 23 to 26, inclusive. This shows a wide variation
in the melting point of the fat of the sire and dam when com-
pared with the melting point of the fat of the offspring. There
is also a wide variation in the melting point of the fat of the four
pigs. For instance, the melting point of the fat of Nos. 23 and
24 is 27.50C. and 26.30C. respectively, and that of Nos. 25 and
26 is 35.6C. and 34.50C. respectively. This indicates that the
individuality of the hog may play an important part in the pro-
duction of hard or soft pork.






Bulletin 157, Soft Pork Studies


HARD, SOFT AND OILY SAMPLES
The data given in Table 21 is the melting point of the fat of
samples obtained at Armour & Company's Packing Plant, Jack-
sonville, Fla. These samples were taken from carcasses in the
cooler. As seen in the table part of the samples were taken from
what were called hard, part from soft and part from oily car-
casses. The results secured from these few samples show that
there is considerable difference in the melting points of hard
and soft fat, and also of soft and oily samples. All samples
taken from carcasses called hard pork had a melting point of
from 44.5 C. to 47C. In other words the melting points of these
hard samples were quite uniform. This does not mean that all
hard pork must have a melting point of 44C. or higher. In
nearly every case the soft fat melted at a higher temperature
than did the oily samples; hence, there is some indication that a
difference may be found in the melting point of the fat of soft
and oily pork.
TABLE 21.-SHOWING THE MELTING POINT OF SAMPLES OF FAT TAKEN FROM
HARD, SOFT AND OILY CARCASSES
(Samples taken from the ham)
Date Hard I Soft I Oily
February 9, 1920 .......................... 45.6C. 26.90C. 24.8C.
April 2, 1920.................................. 44.5C. 31.0C. 32.0*C.
44.5*C. 32.4C. 27.0C.
45.0C. 33.6C. 25.6*C.
46.0oC.
47.0C.
46.2C.

CONCLUSIONS
1. This is, apparently, the first report of a series of experi-
ments conducted that shows the melting point of the fat at the
beginning, at intervals during the test, and also at the close of
the experiment.
2. The number of animals used is not sufficient from which
to draw final conclusions.
3. The results of this experiment show that there is a wide
field of usefulness in this line of investigation.
4. From the experiments it is evident that the melting point of
fat is radically influenced by the character of the feed.
5. The data indicates that there is a large variation in the
melting point of fat of different individuals regardless of the
feed consumed.




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