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Faculty member, visiting scholar receive National Pork Board grant

David Newman, assistant professor of animal science and swine specialist at NDSU, and Sun Xin (Rex), visiting scholar from Nanjing Agriculture University, Nanjing, China, have received an $80,325 grant from the National Pork Board.

The project, which will provide valuable information for the U.S. pork industry, is titled “Prediction of pork quality using online computer vision system." The grant is for 18 months.

The project will:

  • Validate a novel tool to predict pork quality using the vision method, which characterizes lean color and surface texture features, fat color and texture features, and marbling and then to establish a model to predict pork quality.

  • Establish a model to predict pork quality grading values using imaging software through correlation analysis between traditional object and subjective pork quality measurements and image processing analysis.

  • Gather and correlate quality attributes from whole boneless pork loins of varying degree of quality to assess pork quality data by taking standard industry meat quality measurements and comparing them to imaging data from multiple locations on the whole loin.

According to Newman, the data will create a tool for future research on “whole carcass” quality with further implications for other pork primals and processed meats. It also is hoped the work will lead to future research to validate and establish time-points and locations for quality measurements during both slaughter and processing.

Sun Xin is currently collaborating with Newman in the NDSU Department of Animal Sciences. His area of expertise is agriculture engineering and meat science.

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