Know more

Our use of cookies

Cookies are a set of data stored on a user’s device when the user browses a web site. The data is in a file containing an ID number, the name of the server which deposited it and, in some cases, an expiry date. We use cookies to record information about your visit, language of preference, and other parameters on the site in order to optimise your next visit and make the site even more useful to you.

To improve your experience, we use cookies to store certain browsing information and provide secure navigation, and to collect statistics with a view to improve the site’s features. For a complete list of the cookies we use, download “Ghostery”, a free plug-in for browsers which can detect, and, in some cases, block cookies.

Ghostery is available here for free:

You can also visit the CNIL web site for instructions on how to configure your browser to manage cookie storage on your device.

In the case of third-party advertising cookies, you can also visit the following site:, offered by digital advertising professionals within the European Digital Advertising Alliance (EDAA). From the site, you can deny or accept the cookies used by advertising professionals who are members.

It is also possible to block certain third-party cookies directly via publishers:

Cookie type

Means of blocking

Analytical and performance cookies

Google Analytics

Targeted advertising cookies


The following types of cookies may be used on our websites:

Mandatory cookies

Functional cookies

Social media and advertising cookies

These cookies are needed to ensure the proper functioning of the site and cannot be disabled. They help ensure a secure connection and the basic availability of our website.

These cookies allow us to analyse site use in order to measure and optimise performance. They allow us to store your sign-in information and display the different components of our website in a more coherent way.

These cookies are used by advertising agencies such as Google and by social media sites such as LinkedIn and Facebook. Among other things, they allow pages to be shared on social media, the posting of comments, and the publication (on our site or elsewhere) of ads that reflect your centres of interest.

Our EZPublish content management system (CMS) uses CAS and PHP session cookies and the New Relic cookie for monitoring purposes (IP, response times).

These cookies are deleted at the end of the browsing session (when you log off or close your browser window)

Our EZPublish content management system (CMS) uses the XiTi cookie to measure traffic. Our service provider is AT Internet. This company stores data (IPs, date and time of access, length of the visit and pages viewed) for six months.

Our EZPublish content management system (CMS) does not use this type of cookie.

For more information about the cookies we use, contact INRA’s Data Protection Officer by email at or by post at:

24, chemin de Borde Rouge –Auzeville – CS52627
31326 Castanet Tolosan CEDEX - France

Dernière mise à jour : Mai 2018

Menu Logo Principal

Home page

Stress and meat quality. Role of the animal’s genetic background and prior history

INRA Prod. Anim., 15(2), 125-133.


INRA, Station de Recherches sur la Viande, Theix, 63122 St-Genès-Champanelle


Stress reactions during the slaughtering procedureaffect muscular metabolism before and after slaughterand consequently, meat quality. The phenomenon isprincipally related to a reduction in muscle glycogenstores and an increase in ATPase activity. The way animalsreact behaviourally, physiologically and metabolicallyto stress, depends on the animal's genetic backgroundand prior history. For example, certain breedsare more reactive to human presence or to an unfamiliarenvironment. The effect of physiological changeson metabolism depends amongst others on the numberof functional receptors on or in muscle cells, whichappear to vary according to genetic background.Concerning history, the experience of a defeat in anagonistic encounter, of being housed in isolation orattached, may increase behavioural and physiologicalreactivity to an unfamiliar object or to the distributionof the daily meal. It is likely that such an increase reinforcesthe effects of slaughter stress on meat quality.The ease of handling, loading and unloading dependson the degree of the animal's familiarity with the situation.For veal calves, the caretaker's attitude towardshis animals has some influence on the calves' reactionstowards slaughter procedures and on meat quality. Insummary, we have some knowledge of the effects ofgenetic background, rearing method and stress reactivitytowards slaughter procedures on meat quality. It isnecessary to extend this knowledge and to elucidateunderlying mechanisms.

Download documents