U. S. consumer perceptions of U. S. and Canadian beef quality grades

J. L. Tedford, A. Rodas-Gonzalez, Andrea Garmyn, J Brooks, Bradley Johnson, Jessica Starkey, G. O. Clark, A. J. Derington, J. A. Collins, Markus Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations


A U.S. consumer (n = 642) study (Baltimore, MD; Phoenix, AZ; and Lubbock, TX) was conducted to compare consumer sensory scores of U.S. beef (83 USDA Choice [Choice] and 96 USDA Select [Select]) and Canadian beef (77 AAA and 82 AA) strip loins. Strip loins (n = 338) were obtained from beef processors in Canada and the United States and were wet aged until 21 d postmortem at 2°C. Marbling scores were assigned at 21 d and loins were paired according to quality grades and marbling score. Strip loins were fabricated into 2.54-cm thick steaks; steaks were vacuum packaged and frozen until further evaluations. Proximate analysis was performed to compare fat, moisture, and protein. Choice and Canadian AAA had similar marbling scores and intramuscular fat. Both Choice and Canadian AAA had greater (P < 0.05) marbling scores and intramuscular fat than Canadian AA, but Select strip loins had intermediate values that were not different from any of the other grades (P > 0.05). Consumers' opinions did not differ when comparing equivalent grades (Choice with Canadian AAA and Select with Canadian AA), but they rated Choice and Canadian AAA more palatable than Select and Canadian AA for all sensory attributes (P < 0.05). Regarding percentage of acceptability and likelihood to buy score, consumers indicated a preference and greater probability to buy (P = 0.001 and P = 0.004, respectively) strip loin steaks from higher quality grade carcasses (Choice and Canadian AAA) than lower quality grade carcasses (Select and Canada AA). Additionally, consumers gave their opinion of Canadian beef, where its quality and safety were rated as "good" to "excellent" for both attributes (76.72% and 88.36%, respectively; P < 0.05), feeling confident in beef that is imported from Canada. In the same way, consumers indicated that country-of-origin labeling was a minimal factor influencing their beef steak purchasing decisions. Results from this consumer study indicated U.S. consumers could not differentiate between U.S. and Canadian beef within comparable quality grades; however, strip loin steaks from higher quality grades were more palatable than lower quality grades according to consumer scores for eating quality traits.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3685-3692
Number of pages8
JournalDefault journal
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2014


  • Beef
  • Country of origin
  • Fat content
  • Palatability
  • Quality grade
  • Survey


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