Dietary vitamin E dosage and source affects meat quality parameters in light weight lambs

Leonel N. Leal*, José A. Beltrán, Verónica Alonso, José M. Bello, Leo A. den Hartog, Wouter H. Hendriks, Javier Martín-Tereso

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: Supra-nutritional vitamin E supplementation is a commonly used approach to delay lipid oxidation and colour deterioration in lamb and beef meat marketed under modified atmosphere packaging. However, these applications lack a precise calibration of dose for the desired effect and, in addition, limited information is available regarding the use of natural vitamin E for this purpose. RESULTS: Three hundred and sixty Rasa Aragonesa lambs were fed diets supplemented with all-rac-α-tocopheryl acetate (250, 500, 1000 and 2000 mg kg–1 compound feed), RRR-α-tocopheryl acetate (125, 250, 500 and 1000 mg kg–1 compound feed) and a basal diet without vitamin E supplementation for 14 days before slaughter at 25.8 ± 1.67 kg body weight. Vitamin E supplementation had no effect (P > 0.05) on average daily weight gain, feed intake and feed efficiency. Display time had larger effects on lipid oxidation, colour stability, myoglobin forms and meat discolouration parameters compared to vitamin E supplementation. However, vitamin E source and dosage significantly extended meat shelf-life as indicated by lipid oxidation, redness, hue angle, metmyoglobin formation, deoxymyoglobin formation, A580–630 and ISO2. CONCLUSION: The quantification of these effects demonstrated that the biological activity value of 1.36 used to distinguish both vitamin E sources is not appropriate for meat quality enhancing properties.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1606-1614
JournalJournal of the Science of Food and Agriculture
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 15 Mar 2018


  • all-rac-α-tocopheryl acetate
  • colour
  • lipid oxidation
  • modified atmosphere packaging
  • RRR-α-tocopheryl acetate
  • vitamin E

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