THE DUROC BREED
The Duroc breed had its origin in the eastern United States and in the Corn Belt. Duroc may vary in colour from light golden to the preferred dark red. The Duroc's ears should droop.
The breed is credited for having brought about a real influence on carcass and meat quality (Huiskes, Binnendijk, Hoofs + Theissen, 1997). Scientific studies indicate that the Duroc breed has high values of marbling fat in relation to carcass fat (Edwards, Wood, Moncrieff & Porter, 1992; Hovenier, 1993 and Wood & Cameron, 1994; Blanched, Warkup, Ellis, Willis, Avery, 1999; Hviid, Barton-Gade Oksama & Aaslyng, 2002). This has resulted in improved juiciness and tenderness of Duroc meat in comparison to other breeds.
The higher concentration of red oxidative muscle fibres is associated with higher eating quality scores – muscles with more red fibres and according to certain studies also contain higher lipid deposits (Wood & Cameron, 1994).
It would appear that, in order to bring about a worthwhile improvement in eating quality, at least 50% Duroc genes in the slaughter generation are required, implying use of the pure Duroc as terminal sire.
Information Courtesy of: South African Pork Producers Organisation
THE LANDRACE 'BREED'
South Africa has a variety of indigenous farm animal breeds that originated from East and North Africa and migrated southwards with tribes to South Africa. Some have been commercial- ized and are at no risk while others have been severely depleted by continued cross breeding and replacement. Others have been used to develop hardy composites for specific environments. All these breeds can be classified as landraces - indigenous and locally developed breeds closely linked to a country by way of name, local content, breeding programme and origin. Part of the South African heritage lies in the genetic diversity of indigenous domesticated breeds which have adapted to the harsh African environment. These animals can survive on both marginal and high potential grazing and are disease and heat tolerant. It is essential that the gene pool of these unique characteristics should be conserved.
The Landrace 'breed' is popular amongst non commercial producers who slaughter mainly for domestic consumption.
Source: South African Agricultural Research Council