​​Media release

Cutting-edge quality control for the beef industry

8 May 2018

  • Pioneering X-ray technology could transform Australia’s red meat industry
  • New machine helps determine amount and quality of meat on an animal carcass
  • Technology successfully trailed at meat works in Rockhampton
New X-ray equipment to detect the amount and quality of meat on an animal carcass is set to reduce the cost of meat processing and help farmers choose their breeding stock better.

Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources David Littleproud unveiled a Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry (DEXA) machine prototype, now in use at the Teys meat processing facility in Rockhampton, can scan 500 carcasses in an hour.

“DEXA can quickly and accurately measure how much meat versus fat is in a carcass, which could revolutionise meat processing,” Minister Littleproud said.

“DEXA could help farmers better choose which animals and their offspring to keep as part of the breeding herd. It could also help process animals faster.

“It also promises to build greater trust between farmers and meat processors by providing automated and independent data on carcass quality and commercial yields.

“The prototype is working well in this processing plant’s operations and shows real potential for a nationwide rollout.

“Australia has to maintain its position as a world-leading red meat producer. That is why the government has invested almost $5 million to have Meat & Livestock Australia to develop technology that measures lean meat yield and eating quality for beef, pork and lamb.

“DEXA came from that investment and I look forward to seeing it used in processing plants throughout the country.”   

Fast Facts:
  • The Dual Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry (DEXA) prototype machine now in use at Teys meat processing facility in Rockhampton can scan full carcass sides at a rate of 500 per hour
  • The X-Ray is part of a project co-funded by the Australian Government to explore and create technologies to help beef, sheep and pig farmers get fast, accurate measurements of yield and eating quality