October 8, 2021 - 3:15pm -- fulks.56@osu.edu

County Fair Champion Carcasses Evaluated  - The Hardin County Carcass Show of Champions were evaluated Tuesday, September 21 at Jenkins Meats in Mt. Victory.  Because of the pandemic, this year’s event was virtual and featured OSU Department of Animal Sciences Assistant Professor of Meat Science Dr. Lyda Garcia as the judge and she discussed the merits of the winning market livestock carcasses from the 2021 Hardin County Fair.

The Grand Champion and Reserve Champion steers, barrows, gilts, and lambs from the Hardin County Fair are sent to Jenkins Meats for holding and processing.  The project animals were evaluated in the show ring by experienced judges, who try to estimate which one will yield the highest quality of lean meat.  For the carcass show, actual measurements are taken of the weight, muscle, and fat to determine the quality and amount of meat that can be harvested from these market animals. 

The steers were evaluated for percent boneless trim retail cuts, as well as USDA quality grades.  The reserve champion steer had a 15.5 square inch ribeye area and 0.3 inches of back fat.  This steer graded a high choice quality grade.  The grand champion steer had a 16.1 square inch ribeye area with 0.2 inches of back fat.  This steer graded a high select quality grade.  The reserve champion steer had yield grade of 1.9 (on a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 has the highest cutability), while the grand champion steer had a yield grade of 1.6.  Overall, on the rail the reserve champion steer’s carcass ranked higher than the champion steer’s carcass.

The hog carcasses are evaluated based on the amount of lean muscle they will yield in combination with the amount of back fat.  Comparing the four hog carcasses in the show, the loineye measurement areas ranged from 7.1 to 9.0 square inches, with the reserve champion barrow having the largest loineye measurement area.  The reserve champion gilt scored the highest percent lean (saleable product) with only 0.01 percentage points higher than the reserve champion barrow.  The reserve champion gilt had the lowest amount of back fat of any of the other hogs.  Overall, the reserve champion gilt’s carcass ranked higher than the grand champion gilt.  The reserve grand champion barrow’s carcass ranked higher than the champion barrow’s carcass.

The reserve champion lamb carcass had 47.31% boneless trim retail cuts while the grand champion lamb carcass had 45.22% boneless trim retail cuts.  The reserve champion lamb had 0.9 inches of body wall thickness, while the grand champion had 1.1 inches of body wall thickness.  Overall, the reserve champion lamb was ranked above the grand champion lamb when evaluated by the carcass show judge.

The carcass show illustrates the high quality of meat animals being produced by Hardin County 4-H and FFA members.  These young people and their parents need to be commended on the outstanding job they are doing with the feeding and care of their project livestock.  A video of the virtual carcass show can be accessed at https://youtu.be/ocPMBz8toS8 and the complete carcass show data:  https://hardin.osu.edu/sites/hardin/files/imce/2021%20Hardin%20County%20Carcass%20Results%20pdf.pdf . 

Special thanks to Hardin County 4-H Educator Amanda Raines for producing the video.

The Hardin County Carcass Show of Champions is organized by OSU Extension; and is sponsored by the Hardin County Sheep Improvement Association, Hardin County Pork Producers, Hardin County Cattle Producers, Hardin County Agricultural Society, and Jenkins Meats.