Virtual dissection of pig carcasses

Martin Vester-Christensen, Søren Gylling Hemmingsen Erbou, Mads Fogtmann Hansen, E.V. Olsen, L.B. Christensen, M. Hviid, Bjarne Kjær Ersbøll, Rasmus Larsen

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    This paper proposes the use of computed tomography (CT) as a reference method for estimating the lean meat percentage (LMP) of pig carcasses. The current reference is manual dissection which has a limited accuracy due to variability between butchers. A contextual Bayesian classification scheme is applied to classify volume elements of full body CT-scans of pig carcasses into three tissue types. A linear model describes the relation between voxels and the full weight of the half carcass, which can be determined more accurately than that of the lean meat content. Two hundred and ninety-nine half pig carcasses were weighed and CT-scanned. The explained variance of the model was R-2 = 0.9994 with a root-mean-squared error of prediction of 83.6 g. Applying this method as a reference will ensure a more robust calibration of sensors for measuring the LMP, which is less prone to variation induced by manual intervention.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalMeat Science
    Issue number4
    Pages (from-to)699-704
    Publication statusPublished - 2009


    • Calibration reference
    • Pig carcass grading
    • Computed tomography
    • Lean meat percentage
    • Image analysis


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