In 1992, the Canadian pork industry and the Canadian Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food completed a National Pork Carcass Cutout project to determine the average meat yield for carcasses and cuts. The results were also compared to a previous cutout project that took place in 1978 to measure changes that had taken place in Canadian pork carcass meat yield over those fifteen years.
The 1992 survey indicates that on average a Canadian pork carcass has the following composition expressed as % of total yield weight (sum of ham, loin, butt, picnic, side ribs and belly):
- Ham yield 27.56%
- Loin yield 24.70%
- Butt yield 12.63%
- Picnic yield 11.33%
- Side ribs yield 4.83%
- Belly yield 18.95%
A new definition of lean yield has been implemented in January 1995 and is expressed in terms of % of side weight (closer to the definition used in Europe). With that new definition the lean yield averages 59.76%.
New Canadian definition of lean yield
% lean yield = weight (BDF* ham + boneless loin + tenderloin + BDF butt +BDF picnic + skinned belly + side ribs) x 100/ side carcass weight
It was found that carcasses in 1992 had a mean lean yield of 6-7% greater than carcasses in 1978. This difference accounts for both genetic improvement and cutting procedure differences between the 1978 and 1992 cutouts. However it is estimated that at least 50% of the difference can be attributed to genetic improvement.
* BDF = Boneless DeFatted