• The ultra-rapid chilling of lamb carcasses

      McGeehin, Brian; Sheridan, James J.; Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Teagasc, 1999-01)
      The practice in Irish commercial abattoirs is to chill lamb carcasses for a period of approximately 16 hours at 2 - 4°C, at which stage the core temperature of the carcass has reached 7°C. Chilling in this manner is considered necessary because it is generally held that faster chilling leads to toughening of the meat. The objective of this work was to develop a continuous ultra-rapid chilling system for lambs which would reduce carcass chilling time without adversely affecting the quality of the meat.
    • Up-grading of low value meats and by-products for use in consumer foods.

      Kenny, Tony; Desmond, Eoin; Ward, Patrick (Teagasc, 1999-02-01)
      The investigation was concerned with the up-grading of: (i) connective tissue material in the form of beef membrane, pig rind and turkey skin; (ii) muscle material from low-value cuts and from offals such as beef heart; (iii) heart muscle, by extrusion processing; (i) An emulsified material from beef membrane and beef replaced up to 5% of lean meat in corn beef and up to 10% in beefburgers without impairing cooked yield and eating quality. A collagen emulsion paste (CEP) from pig rind replaced up to 5% of lean meat in ham prepared from diced meat, and between 2 and 5% in ham prepared from whole muscles without reduction in cooked yield, texture, appearance and eating quality. Turkey skin was minced, chopped and incorporated at 10, 15 and 20% levels in a mix with turkey leg meat, which was used to make battered and breaded re-formed steaklets. Steaks containing up to 20% of emulsified skin were similar to control samples in flavour, juiciness and overall acceptability. An antioxidant may be required to prevent rancidity during frozen storage. (ii) Yields of surimi-like material, prepared by water-extraction, sieving and centrifuging, were 16% from lean of topside of beef (used as control for comparison), 39% from beef heart, 17% from pork mechanically recovered meat, 11% from beef weasand and less than 5% from beef cheek meat. The beef heart surimi was studied for its gelation properties and for its performance as an ingredient replacing lean meat in frankfurters and in beefburgers at levels between 3 and 15%. In frankfurters the addition of the surimi reduced cook loss and increased tenderness. For overall eating quality the frankfurters with 7 or 10% of surimi were preferable, and those with 15% equal, to those with none. In beefburgers cook loss was decreased from 32 to 25% by the addition of 15% surimi. Other results were similar to those for frankfurters, showing that the surimi could be added at 10 to 15% level without impairing texture or flavour. (iii) Cold extrusion processing of beef heart muscle with the aim of increasing its functionality showed that gelation properties of the material were not improved by extrusion compared to bowl chopping; moreover, the extruded product had a strong odour and dark colour.
    • Upgrading the cold chain for consumer food products

      Gormley, Ronan T.; Brennan, Martine H.; Butler, Francis (Teagasc, 2000-12)
      The prepared consumer foods sector in Ireland is undergoing sustained dynamic growth. Products that are distributed chilled or frozen require a cold chain and there is potential to increase product quality by optimising the cold chain. This potential prompted the current study.
    • The use of air induction nozzles for herbicide application to sugar beet.

      Rice, B.; Mitchell, B.J.; Leonard, R. (Teagasc, 2002-08-01)
      Trials were carried out over a three-year period in Oak Park to compare airinduction with conventional nozzles for weed control in sugar beet. Two makes of low-drift nozzle (Bubble Jet and DriftBETA) were compared with conventional fans. All nozzles were used at a pressure of 3 bar. Two sizes (015 and 03) of each type of nozzle were used, to allow volumes of 110 and 220 litres per hectare to be applied. These nozzles were used to apply two-spray programmes to sugar-beet crops. In four of the weed control trials, tank mixes of products with some residual action (Progress, Goltix, Venzar and Debut) were used. In the other two trials, a contact-only spray (Betanal E) was used. The aim was to see how the nozzles behaved with contact-only sprays as well as those with more complex modes of action. Spray drift was also measured with the size 03 nozzles. Spray drift reductions from 37% to 64% were measured when the air-induction nozzles were compared with conventional fans. In general, the tank mix programme gave better weed control than the contact-only treatments. Within programmes, differences between the application methods were significant in two trials. In both of these, the conventional nozzles gave the best results. Looking at the mean results of the tank-mix trials, two trends were suggested: higher water volumes gave slightly better weed control, and the effect of the coarser sprays was slight. With the contact-only sprays, the decline in performance with the coarser sprays was more emphatic, and the lower volumes appeared to give slightly better control. It is concluded that in calm conditions conventional fan or cone nozzles should continue to be used, but that air-induction nozzles are a valuable fall-back when it is necessary to spray in a moderate breeze. In these situations, and with the normal tank-mix programmes, small nozzle sizes applying very low volumes should be avoided. Makes of air-induction nozzle which give very coarse spray should also be avoided.
    • Use of Bacteriocins to Improve Cheese Quality and Safety

      Ross, R Paul; Hill, Colin; Ryan, Maire; Cunniffe, Alan; McAuliffe, Olivia; Murray, Deirdre; O'Keefe, Triona; Rea, Mary (Teagasc, 1998-09-01)
      The objectives of this project were to generate, characterise and exploit a range of novel bacteriocin producing starter cultures to improve both the safety and the quality of fermented dairy foods. The main conclusions were as follows: Lacticin 3147 is a broad spectrum bacteriocin which inhibits a wide range of Gram-positive bacteria including lactobacilli, clostridia and Listeria. The bacteriocin has been purified by chromatographic procedures and has been shown to be composed of two peptides, both of which are required for biological activity. The mechanism of action of lacticin 3147 has been elucidated. The entire plasmid encoding lacticin 3147 has been sequenced and the bacteriocin in distinct from any previously characterised lactococcal bacteriocin. The Food Grade introduction of the bacteriocin genes into cheese starters was carried out. Lacticin 3147 producing starters have been used to control the pathogen Listeria monocytogenes on the surface of mould ripened cheese. Lacticin 3147 producing starters have been used to control the non-starter lactic acid bacteria complement in Cheddar cheese during the ripening process. A novel starter system using a bacteriocin (lactococcin)- producing adjunct has been designed which gives increased cell lysis during Cheddar cheese manufacture while ensuring that efficient acid production is not compromised. In summary these studies have found that naturally occurring antimicrobials such as bacteriocins have a wide range of applications in the food industry for improving both the quality and safety of fermented dairy products.
    • The use of Cold Setting Whey Proteins to enhance the Gelation Properties of Foods.

      Keogh, Kieran; O'Kennedy, Brendan; Twomey, Myra (Teagasc, 1999-06-01)
      The main objective of this project was to produce dried, denatured, whey protein-based powders, which on reconstitution in food formulations show an increased ability to bind water in the presence of added salts, especially in the ambient temperature range. To achieve this, a number of secondary objectives were set to observe the behaviour of the whey protein system. These included the effects of salt on increases in viscosity during the heating process, the requirement for pH adjustment during processing and the ability of the pre-treated whey protein to interact with fat. The main conclusions were as follows: * It was shown that, compared to a commercial 75% whey protein concentrate, a preheated whey protein ingredient (cold-setting whey protein) improved the consistency of surimi and a cold-set dessert system. * For cold-setting applications, the whey proteins need to withstand heating without gel formation. For example, as the protein concentration was increased, the salt concentration had to be decreased and pH increased to prevent the initiation of gelling during processing. When the salt concentration was increased, a lower heat treatment was needed to prevent viscosity increase. However, lower heat treatment resulted in a lower degree of protein unfolding and weaker cold-set gels. This example implies that only certain whey sources are suitable starting materials for cold-set applications. * Model oil-in-water emulsions were studied using whey proteins pre-treated at different homogenisation and heating conditions to evaluate the potential of cold-setting whey proteins in yoghurt, mayonnaise and sauces. It was found that with these pretreatments, emulsion viscosity increases were observed at very low whey protein concentration (< 1%), when salt was added after emulsion formation, indicating that cold-set whey proteins are much more effective gelling agents than normal whey protein ingredients. For this reason, they have potential in acidified dairy products such as yoghurt. * Pre-heated whey protein dispersions are also capable of binding and stabilising calcium phosphate. This property can be exploited in the stabilisation of calcium-fortified milkbased beverages. * The commercial production of cold-setting whey protein ingredients will depend on the ability to retain whey protein solubility during processing. A number of mechanisms exist to achieve this but, in all cases, very exact control of the process is required. * Because low salt levels prevent the aggregation and gelling of denatured whey proteins, whey protein isolate is an ideal starting material for the production of these ingredients, but due to the high cost, de-mineralised whey was chosen instead as the starting material. Careful consideration has also to be given to the processing equipment and the economics involved. * The development of whey protein ingredients especially for cold-set end uses is a product specific exercise. General guidelines were developed in the current work, but further work with industry partners will be necessary before commercial success is achieved.
    • The use of tensiometers to control the irrigation of nursery stock in containers.

      Keogh, E.; Maher, M.J.; Hunter, A.; Campion, Jerry (Teagasc, 2000-07-01)
      The use of digital tensiometers to control the irrigation of nursery stock in containers was studied over a three year period. Over this time the tensiometers performed satisfactorily and successfully automated the irrigation of the plants. The results indicate the feasibility of using them to control nursery stock irrigation under Irish conditions. An irrigation tension of 50 hPa to trigger an irrigation period resulted in larger plants than those grown under drier regimes with irrigation tensions of 100 and 200 hPa. Measurements of stomatal resistance indicated that the plants in the drier regimes were growing under greater moisture stress. The drier regimes reduced the number of irrigations and also the overall usage of water. They reduced plant size but did not impair plant appearance. It may be possible to use this approach in the future to control plant growth. There was no difference in performance between plants gown with ebb and flood irrigation and those irrigated via overhead spraylines. The ebb and flood system gave a considerable reduction in water use.
    • Using ultrasound to measure beef tenderness and fat content

      Allen, Paul; Dwyer, Catherine; Mullen, Anne Maria; Buckin, Vitaly; Smyth, Cormac; Morrissey, Siobhan (Teagasc, 2001-04)
      A new acoustical technique was developed for the quantitative analysis of the texture and composition of meat and meat products. This new approach exploits the fact that the acoustical velocity and attenuation of waves propagated through meat are affected by its mechanical properties, thus allowing characterisation in terms of its composition and eating quality. The method is based on a new high-resolution ultrasonic resonator. This technique is rapid and uses small samples. Procedures for the acoustical analysis of meat were developed and the results were correlated with taste panel and shear force measurements of meat tenderness.
    • Validation and Improvement of the Beef Production Sub-index in Ireland for Beef Cattle

      Drennan, Michael J; McGee, Michael; Clarke, Anne Marie; Kenny, David A.; Evans, R. D.; Berry, Donagh (Teagasc, 2008-01-01)
      The objectives of the following study were to: a. Quantify the effect of sire genetic merit for BCI on: 1. feed intake, growth and carcass traits of progeny managed under bull or steer beef production systems. 2. live animal scores, carcass composition and plasma hormone and metabolite concentrations in their progeny. b. Compare the progeny of : 1. Late-maturing beef with dairy breeds and 2. Charolais (CH), Limousin (LM), Simmental (SM) and Belgian Blue (BB) sires bred to beef suckler dams, for feed intake, blood hormones and
    • Variation in the quality of meat from Irish steers at the time of slaughter.

      Moloney, Aidan P; Mullen, Anne Maria; Maher, S.C.; Buckley, D.J.; Kerry, Joseph P. (Teagasc, 01/01/2004)
      There is no information on the variation in quality, in particular tenderness, that exists in Irish Beef nor is there information on the variation that would remain if optimum practices were imposed at all stages of the beef production chain. Evaluation of the success of measures to improve beef consistency requires information on existing variation and the minimum variation achievable.The objectives of this project were (i) to establish the variation that exists in the quality of meat from Irish cattle, (ii) to quantify the minimum variation in meat quality that can be achieved in a practical beef production system, (iii) to determine the effects and mechanisms of additional sources of variation. The conclusions from this project are: • The M. longissimus dorsi (loin) was found to be more variable than the M. semimembranosus (topside) for most quality attributes examined (tenderness, sarcomere length and pH). The scale of variation within the loin was similar to that reported by the other research groups within the EU and US. Heifers were more variable than steers for most attributes, while there was no consistent classification effect on the variability of meat quality attributes. • Tenderness was equally variable in meat from genetically similar steers, managed similarly, compared to commercial steers randomly selected from a factory lairage but matched for weight and grade.This was likely a result of both groups being crossbred beef cattle of similar age, fat score, carcass weight and managed identically post-mortem. However, variation in tenderness of both groups was less than that observed in a survey of commercial throughput (experiment 1). This decrease is attributed to better pre-and-post-slaughter handling practices. • The data suggest that selection of sires (within a breed) with better than average conformation has no deleterious effect on the eating quality of beef of their progeny.A more comprehensive comparison of sires within a breed and between breeds is required to confirm the generality of this conclusion. • In a comparison of genotypes, gender and slaughter weights, there was no evidence that variation around the mean value for tenderness differed between breeds or liveweights after 14 days ageing. Bulls were more variable than steers for some quality traits but the variation in tenderness was similar for bulls and steers after 14 days ageing. • While optimising the management of animals during the pre and post-slaughter period reduced variation in tenderness, some residual variation remained. A large percentage of the residual variation in tenderness (Warner Bratzler shear force) after 2 and 7 days post-mortem was explained by proteolysis (breakdown of myofibrillar proteins).Variation in tenderness (Warner Bratzler shear force) after 2 days post-mortem was largely explained by phosphates (energy) and proteolysis, while sensory tenderness was largely explained by phosphates and glycolytic potential. • Further work is required to reduce residual variation in Irish beef and to determine the causes of this variation.
    • Very fast chilling in beef

      Troy, Declan J.; Joseph, Robin; European Union; AIR-CT94-1881 (Teagasc, 2001-07)
      Very fast chilling (VFC) of beef reduces the temperature to -1ºC after 5 hours post mortem throughout its mass. The process has many potential benefits (Joseph,1996) including the production of tender meat and greater process efficiency in the meat plant.
    • Viability of in vitro produced cattle embryos.

      Morris, Dermot G.; Diskin, Michael G.; Sreenan, J.M. (Teagasc, 2001-06-01)
      Embryo transfer is being increasingly used in the cattle industry. As well as direct embryo transfers, many embryo-based biotechnologies have the potential to improve cattle production efficiency through enhanced breeding strategies, by facilitating the introduction of desirable traits such as disease resistance and through the production of desirable medical or pharmaceutical products in the milk. These biotechnologies are, however, dependent on a supply of viable in vitro produced (IVP) embryos. While the in vitro fertilization rate is high (80%) in cattle, only about 30 transferable embryos, or blastocysts, are produced from every 100 fertilized oocytes. A major factor affecting the viability of IVP embryos is their failure, in a high proportion of cases, to undergo normal development to the blastocyst stage in the manner of in vivo embryos. The major problem relates to a failure of the cells of IVP embryos to form a compact cell mass when they are 5 - 6 days old. This ultimately leads to developmental problems and compromised viability. Cell compaction is recognized as a critical event in early embryo development and has been associated with marked changes in protein synthesis and phosphorylation in the embryos of some species. This report is the first, to our knowledge, to describe the rate and pattern of protein synthesis and phosphorylation before, during and after compaction in both in vivo and in IVP cattle embryos. The main results are summarised below.
    • The virulence of E. coli 0157:H7 isolated from Irish sheep and pigs to humans

      Lenahan, Mary; Sheridan, James J.; O'Brien, Stephen (Teagasc, 2008-02)
      Investigations were carried out at five sheep and five pig export abattoirs situated in the Republic of Ireland to determine the prevalence of E. coli O157:H7 in these animals at slaughter. This is the first study for the presence of E. coli O157:H7 on sheep and pigs to be carried out in Ireland. Faeces and pre- and post-chill carcass swabs were collected from pigs over a one year period between January and December 2004. Samples were collected from sheep over a 13-month period between February 2005 and February 2006. The pig study recovered E. coli O157:H7 from 0.24 % (n=4) of 1680 porcine samples while the sheep study isolated the pathogen from 2.1 % (n=33) of 1600 ovine samples. PCR analysis of E. coli O157:H7 isolates determined that they carried the virulence genes vt1, vt2, eaeA and hlyA typically associated with clinical illness in humans. The results presented indicate that Irish sheep and pigs are reservoirs for E. coli O157:H7 which may be potentially harmful to humans.
    • Visual Environmental Data on Soils and Land Use

      Coulter, B.S.; McDonald, E.; Murphy, W.E.; Lee, J. (Teagasc, 1999-05-01)
      This project was established to develop a computer based system to view, manipulate and store data on soils, environment and land use in electronic map form for environmental decision support. It was designed to produce new information, charts and maps by combining features from the captured data, and to develop networking systems to allow exchange of data with other Teagasc centres, local and national government and the EU. The current report presents maps and tabular data of particular relevance to the environment. It includes information and maps on the total stocking density of livestock in different parts of Ireland. This is relevant to the nutrient loadings that soils and the environment are subject to from normal farming operations. It also includes maps and tabular information on phosphorus and potassium levels in soils and the recommended manure and fertiliser application given by Teagasc for grassland and cropping on these soils. In addition, it also describes and illustrates with tables and maps, a computerised programming approach for mapping phosphorus and potassium levels in soils at a detailed level by using the farmer’s address to locate samples at townland or DED level.
    • Weaning Mart Survey

      Prendiville, Daniel J.; Earley, Bernadette (Teagasc, 2001-04-01)
      The weanling survey was carried out for the period January 1998 to December 1999. * There were 123,259 weanling surveyed. * The distance travelled to the mart ranged from 1.4 to 216 km. * All weanlings travelled < 4 h to the mart. * The majority of weanlings travelled < 50 km to and from the mart. * The distance travelled from the mart ranged from 2.1 to 364km. * Only 32 weanlings travelled > 500 km on the combined jour neys to and from the mart. * The longest distance travelled on the combined journey to and from the mart was 579 km. * The number of weanlings that remained within the county where the marts were located ranged from 23.5% to 99.5%. * No animals travelled for > 8 h. * There are no welfare issues involved in the selling of weanlings through Irish marts.
    • Web-based Tools for the Analysis of DNA Microarrays

      Geeleher, P.; Golden, A.; Hinde, J.; Morris, Dermot G. (Teagasc, 2008-01-01)
      DNA microarrays are widely used for gene expression profiling. Raw data resulting from microarray experiments, however, tends to be very noisy and there are many sources of technical variation and bias. This raw data needs to be quality assessed and interactively preprocessed to minimise variation before statistical analysis in order to achieve meaningful result. Therefore microarray analysis requires a combination of visualisation and statistical tools, which vary depending on what microarray platform or experimental design is used.Bioconductor is an existing open source software project that attempts to facilitate analysis of genomic data. It is a collection of packages for the statistical programming language R. Bioconductor is particularly useful in analyzing microarray experiments. The problem is that the R programming language’s command line interface is intimidating to many users who do not have a strong background in computing. This often leads to a situation where biologists will resort to using commercial software which often uses antiquated and much less effective statistical techniques, as well as being expensively priced. This project aims to bridge this gap by providing a user friendly web-based interface to the cutting edge statistical techniques of Bioconductor.
    • Weed control in glyphosate tolerant sugar beet.

      Mitchell, B.J. (Teagasc, 2000-12-01)
      Between 1997 and 1999 weed control trials were carried out with sugar beet tolerant to glyphosate. Glyphosate was applied at a total dose of 1620.0, 2160.0, 3240.0 and 4320.0 g a.i. ha-1 in two and three applications. These were compared with a standard and double standard three spray sugar beet herbicide programme. In all seasons application of the lowest dose of glyphosate, 1620.0 g a.i. ha-1 gave marginally better control of weeds than the standard herbicide programme. Herbicide timing was more flexible with glyphosate and only two weeds, Polygonum convolvulus and Lamium purpureum required more than one application to kill all the weeds. In most cases no significant difference in weed control was observed between the glyphosate treatments after the second and third applications but the three spray programmes were marginally better than the two spray in 1997 and 1998. In 1997 the sugar beet strain was not totally tolerant to glyphosate and a reduction in plant numbers was recorded after the initial glyphosate application. The strain used in subsequent years was fully tolerant and no plant loss occurred even at the highest glyphosate dose. At harvest most of the root yields in the glyphosate treatments were significantly higher than the yields from the standard herbicide comparison treatments. Crop vigour was not affected by any of the treatments in 1997 but in 1998 and 1999 the two standard herbicides reduced crop vigour by 10 and 20 per cent respectively.
    • Welfare and health of dairy cattle on out-wintering pads or in cubicle housing with or without cushioned flooring.

      Boyle, Laura; Mee, John F; O'Donovan, Michael; Kiernan, Paul (Teagasc, 2-10-01)
      The first study described in this report involved housing 66 spring calving heifers in one of three systems during the winter, namely, (i) a conventional cubicle house, (ii) a cubicle house with cushioned flooring covering the slats (slat mats) in the passageway and (iii) on a wood-chip out-wintering pad. Behaviour, health and performance indicators were measured on all animals while pregnant from housing in November 2003 until calving in January 2004. Additionally, data were collected on the first 15 animals to calve in each treatment for the first four weeks of lactation in the spring. The slat mats resulted in some improvements to hoof health compared to the conventional cubicle house. Furthermore, it increased feeding times although this had no effect on feed intake or performance. The results also indicated that heifers have a preference for standing on cushioned flooring rather than on concrete during late pregnancy. Both groups indoors differed greatly from the outdoor heifers in several respects. The outdoor animals had healthier feet and were less affected by injuries to the limbs. They also had a more diverse behaviour repertoire and slipped and tripped less. However, their welfare was adversely affected by inclement weather conditions with indications of immunosuppression combined with a reduction in average daily gain being recorded. Furthermore, they were dirtier and spent less time lying down. None of these factors influenced milk yield, quality or composition in early lactation. Welfare problems associated with the pad were weather and management dependent and hence could be addressed by more frequent cleaning of the pad and/or an increase in space allowance combined with the provision of shelter. Hence, the potential for good welfare in dairy heifers was higher on the pad than indoors in a cubicle system even when slat mats were provided. In the second study, 62 autumn calving pluriparous dairy cows were housed in September 2004 in a cubicle system with either solid concrete floors or solid concrete floors covered by a rubber mat and cleaned by an automatic scrapper. Behaviour, locomotion and foot lesion scores were recorded from at least 3 weeks prior to calving until at least 16 weeks post-partum. Furthermore, in-depth measures of oestrous behaviour and reproductive performance were recorded. The cushioned flooring had no effect on sole or white line lesion scores or on dermatitis scores. However, it reduced the rate of wear of the heels in early lactation. Cows on cushioned flooring spent more time standing, but not feeding, at the feed face while cows on concrete stood in the cubicles instead. It appears that where cows have access to spacious, well-designed cubicles they can use them for standing to get relief for their feet from the concrete. Similar to the previous study this also indicates that cows prefer to stand on cushioned flooring than on bare concrete and emphasises the importance of at least providing cows with mats or mattresses in their cubicles. There were no effects of the cushioned flooring on oestrous behaviour or reproductive performance, which was poor in both treatments. It is suggested that the reasons for this were that the cushioned flooring did not provide sufficient traction for the cows and so they were as reluctant as the cows on concrete to perform mounting behaviour.
    • The Welfare of Animals Transported From Ireland to Italy.

      Earley, Bernadette; Farrell, J.A.; Murray, Margaret; Nolan, Michael; Prendiville, Daniel J.; O'Riordan, Edward G. (Teagasc, 2004-03-19)
      The overall objective of the present study was to investigate the physiological, haematological and immunological responses of weanling bulls transported to Italy under present EU legislation and to evaluate the implications in terms of animal welfare.
    • The welfare of animals transported from Ireland to Spain AND The Physiological haematological and immunological responses of 9-month old bulls (250kg) to transport at two stocking densities (0.85m2 and 1.27m2 /250kg animal) on a 12-hour journey by road.

      Earley, Bernadette; Farrell, J.A.; Murray, Margaret; Prendiville, Daniel J.; O'Riordan, Edward G. (Teagasc, 2003-01-01)
      Fifty-two weanling continental x beef heifers (mean liveweight 269kg) were transported from Ireland to France on a roll-on roll-off ferry (RO-RO), and onwards by road for 3-hours to a French lairage, rested for 24 hours at a staging post and taken by road on an 18-hour journey through France to a feedlot in Spain. Animals transported to France lost 7.6 % of their bodyweight, and gained 3.3 % of their bodyweight by time of arrival in Spain and recovered to pre-transport liveweight values by day 6. Although there was some evidence that transport affected physiological and immunological variables, there was no evidence to suggest that it adversely affected the health or the performance of the animals post transport. Creatine kinase activities were increased but values were still within normal acceptable ranges. Increases in non-esterified fatty acids, beta-hydroxybutyrate and urea concentrations suggested that the animals' normal pattern of feeding was disrupted during transport. Increases in albumin, total plasma protein and osmolality would indicate slight dehydration during transit. However, albumin concentrations returned to control levels by day 38 of the study. While haematocrit values were decreased, they are within the range of normal referenced data (24 - 48%). Similarly, changes in the RBC numbers and haemoglobin were within the normal blood referenced ranges ((RBC; 5.0 – 10.0 x106 /ml) and (haemoglobin 8-14 g%)(Schalm, 1961)). The only time at which white blood counts increased above the upper limit of 12, was 12 hours after arrival at the French lairage. The aspartate transaminase concentrations for the transported animals at arrival in France and Spain were not significantly different from their pre-transport concentrations but were increased at day 11 when compared with baseline levels. Concanavalin-A induced interferon-g levels were lower on arrival in the Spanish feedlot and on Day 11 of the study, when compared with pre-transport baseline levels. Compared with pre-transport levels, keyhole limpet haemocyanin-induced interferon-g levels for the transported animals were significantly decreased on the day of arrival in France, with no significant difference on the day of arrival in Spain or on day 11 of the study. Interferon-g is produced by activated T lymphocytes and natural killer cells in response to antigen. The percentage (%) of lymphocytes decreased and the % neutrophils increased post-transport indicating a shift in the population of these blood cells relative to pre-transport baseline values. There was no significant change in plasma cortisol concentrations in transported animals at arrival in France and in Spain. On Day 11, the plasma cortisol concentrations of transported animals were significantly higher than control animals. There were significantly higher glucose concentrations on arrival in France, and in samples taken at 12 and 24 hours post-arrival in France, on arrival in Spain, and on days 7 and 11 compared with control levels. Transported animals had significantly higher glucose levels at sample 2 on the day of arrival in France compared with their pre-transport values. Transported animals had significantly higher fibrinogen levels at arrival in France compared with their pre-transport baseline concentrations. Inflammation resulting from stress can cause the release of acute phase proteins such as haptoglobin and fibrinogen, and acute phase proteins in cattle have been associated with immunosuppression, however, much higher levels have been reported in inflammatory conditions. Transported animals had significantly higher non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA) levels on arrival in France and Spain and on day 11 compared with their pre-transport baseline concentrations. Control animals had significantly higher levels on day 5 compared with their pre-transport baseline NEFA concentrations. However, all levels were within the normal acceptable ranges. The study concluded that transport had no adverse effect on animal welfare based on the physiological, immunological and haematological measurements made.