Project Summary

The Value of Beef Flavor

Principle Investigator(s):
C. Calkins
University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Completion Date:
July 1990
Layman’s Summary

Consumer visual preference and sensory acceptance of strip steaks differing in marbling (upper 2/3 Choice and Select), but similar in objective tenderness value were studied in Chicago and San Francisco. Sensory acceptance of domestic and Argentine strip steaks similar in objective tenderness value was also studied. Optional participation in experimental auctions for steaks similar to taste panel samples revealed the value consumers placed on the products. Consumers (72.6%) visually preferred low marbled steaks. However, high marbled steaks were rated more juicy and more desirable in flavor and overall acceptability than low marbled steaks. Consumers in Chicago were willing to pay more ($0.23 more) for high marbled steaks. While consumers generally preferred the visual appearance of low marbled steaks, high marbling levels appeared to enhance overall acceptability in taste panel evaluation, and some consumers were willing to pay more for that increase in acceptability. Domestic steaks were rated higher in all sensory attributes than Argentine steaks, and consumers in both cities were willing to pay more ($0.48-$0.89 more) for domestic steaks. While Argentine beef is a unique product, consumers in both cities found domestic beef more acceptable in taste panel evaluation and were willing to pay more for the domestic product.