After an animal dies it undergoes the rigour process where the muscle keeps working. With the heart no longer pumping, the muscle relies solely on ‘muscle glucose’ (MG, or energy) to feed it during this phase which requires 64 units of MG. If the muscle runs out of energy before the rigour process would otherwise finish, the meat will be dark in appearance and tough (called a ‘dark-cutter’ carcass).
So how do we maximise MG prior to slaughter?
This is achieved through reducing stress (which can use up to 10 units of MG per hour), and also by giving a high-energy feed. We feed Copra meal (powdered coconut meat) a few hours prior to trucking. Any spare MG that is not used for rigour is the sweet caramelized flavor found in our beef.