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Standards For Grades Of Veal, Lamb And Mutton

( Originally Published Early 1900's )

Classes and Grades of Calves

Illustrations Nos. 83 and 84 show a choice, good, medium and common veal carcass. There is not as yet an official method in effect for the grading of calves, as this work has not been completed by the United States government. In the proposed standardization of the government, however, there has been a division into two classes, those of veal and calf carcasses with the same number of classes in each division.

Therefore, no official grading of calf and veal carcasses can be described, as it would only be the opinion of an individual, and it may not meet the same specifications as will be formulated by the government.

Veal Cutting Methods

As in lamb and mutton, there is very little difference in the cutting up of a veal carcass. Local demand influences practically all cuts. Depending upon the size of the hindquarter, the legs are either sold whole or cut up into veal cutlets. This leaves the rump, ribs and loin. In some localities, the whole leg is sold with the rump on it, boned or partly boned. In localities where a demand for cutlets and chops exists, the entire loin with the rump may be cut up into chops and steaks.

Forequarters are usually divided into breast, rib chops, shoulder chops and neck. While it is practically universal practice to cut the breast with a part of the fore-shank on it, Greater New York cuts slightly different. The entire shoulder, including the fore-shank, is raised and then boned. All hindquarter cuts are practically alike all over the United States. A cutting test on a small veal carcass weighing 60 lbs. without the skin is given below. Another cutting test covering a carcass cut up on a percentage basis is shown on page 648, showing the New York style of breaking up a veal carcass.

Other veal cutting tests are shown in test tables Nos. 129 to 180 for establishing cost and selling prices, cut up according to the New York style and also the typical midwestern style. For comparison, another test is given in Table No. 36 showing the percentage yields of 12 veal carcasses divided into retail cuts.

Wholesale Cuts of Veal

The United States Department of Agriculture, in Department Circular No. 300, defines the wholesale cuts of veal as follows :

"The division of veal carcasses into wholesale cuts is not so general as that of beef and depends, to a considerable extent, on the weight of the carcass. Heavy veal carcasses, as a rule, are sold in sides or quarters or as foresaddles and hindsaddles. In each case a saddle includes both sides of the carcass. Light and medium weight veal carcasses are sold generally in whole carcasses, or saddles and forequarters.

"The standard cuts of veal are hindsaddle 49% and forequarters saddles 51% of the carcass weight. The division is made between the twelfth and thirteenth ribs (one rib remaining on the hindsaddle). Hindsaddles are subdivided into legs representing 40% and loins 9% of the carcass weight. These cuts are divided as shown in Illustration No, 85. Loins include the flanks and kidneys. Forequarters are subdivided into racks comprising 6.5%, and chucks or stews representing 44.5% of the total weight of the carcass. A rack consists of the back and parts of nine pairs of ribs from the twelfth to the fourth, inclusive, with the breast removed.

"The chuck constitutes the remainder of the foresaddle after the rack has been removed. It includes three pairs of ribs, the shoulders, breast and neck."

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