Performance, carcass characteristics and meat quality of pigs under surgical or immunological castration

SUMMARY The objective was to evaluate the performance, quantitative and qualitative characteristics of carcases of male pigs surgically castrated and immunocastrated in finishing phase. Thirty -two crossbred animals (Landrace and Large White) with average initial weight of 92 kg were used, wich 16 males surgically castrated and 16 males immunocastrated. The animals were distributed in a randomized complete block design with two treatments, surgically castrated males or immunocastrated males, with eight replicates and two animals per experimental unit. There was no difference (P> 0.05) in the daily feed intake between castrated and immunocastrated animals. However, there was an increase (P = 0.05) in the daily gain weight of the immunocastrated males in relation to surgically castrated. It was also observed that immunocastrated pigs obtained a lower fat thickness in relation to surgically castrated pigs (P <0.05). The castration form did not influence other carcass characteristics. The qualitative characteristics were not influenced (P> 0.05) by the castration method. It is concluded that immunocastration increases the daily weight gain, reduce the backfat thickness and does not affect the qualitative characteristics of carcasses.