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Producing Quality Meat Rabbits. Quality Assurance. WHAT is Quality Assurance? Quality Standard Assurance: A pledge or a promise To consumers. WHO is responsible for Quality Assurance?. Everyone involved in food production! Livestock producers

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Producing Quality Meat Rabbits


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quality assurance
Quality Assurance
  • WHAT is Quality Assurance?
    • Quality
      • Standard
    • Assurance:
      • A pledge or a promise
      • To consumers
who is responsible for quality assurance
WHO is responsible for Quality Assurance?
  • Everyone involved in food production!
    • Livestock producers
    • Food processors (packing plants, milk plants)
    • Grocery stores & restaurants
    • Consumers
commercial rabbit industry
Commercial Rabbit Industry
  • 8 to 10 million pounds of rabbit are marketed each year in the US
parts of a rabbit carcass
Parts of a Rabbit Carcass

Foreleg

Rib

Lion

Rump

Hind leg

what are the steps to quality meat rabbits
What are the steps to quality meat rabbits???
  • 1st – Housing
  • 2nd – Nutrition
  • 3rd – Health/Breeding Programs
  • 4th – Marketing Plan
housing
Housing
  • Housing
  • Many types and Varieties
  • Need to provide
    • Ventilation
    • Protection from drafts
housing9
Housing
  • Provide a dry environment
  • Provide plenty of space
    • General rule of thumb: ¾ square Foot per pound of body weight.
      • Example a 4lb rabbit would need 3 square feet of cage space or a 18”x 24” cage
health
Health
  • Common Diseases of Rabbits raised in a meat production system:
    • Digestive Disorders
    • Pasteurellosis
    • Parasites
    • Sore Hocks
digestive disorders
Digestive Disorders
  • Newly weaned rabbit is most vulnerable
  • Enterotoxaemia is the most common disorder
  • Coccidiosis is a protozoa that causes diarrhea.
pasteurellosis
Pasteurellosis
  • Respiratory Disease (Snuffles)
  • Larger groups of Rabbits
  • Poor Ventilation and high ammonia levels caused by urine.
parasites sore hocks
Parasites & Sore Hocks
  • Two main types of Parasites
    • Mites: cause ear and skin mange
    • Protozoa: Coccidiosis
  • Sore Hocks
    • The main disadvantage to wire cages
    • Wear of the fur on the hocks and can create open sores on the hocks
reproduction
Reproduction
  • Traits of concern:
    • Number of kits born
    • Number of kits weaned
    • Litter Weights at weaning
    • Litters per year (usually 5-8)
marketing
Marketing
  • Things to consider with meat rabbits:
    • Slaughtering Facilities
    • Packaging & Labeling
    • Potential Buyers
marketing18
Marketing
  • Selling Rabbit Meat
    • From the Farm- can be slaughtered on farm and labeled as not inspected, no license required.
    • At a Farmers Market- Must be processed by a licensed slaughter facility, mobile retail food license required.
    • Grocery or Restaurant-Must be processed by a licensed slaughter facility, retail food establishment license required.
references
References
  • DATCP- Division of Food Safety: Wisconsin food Regulations Overview for Farmers and Market Gardener Wishing to Direct Market.
  • Backyard Production of Meat Rabbits in Texas. Texas Ag. Extension Publication E-138
  • Agriculture Alternatives- Rabbit Production. PennState Cooperative Extension Publication 1994.
  • http://www.elook.org/nutrition/beef/4434.html
  • http://www.elook.org/nutrition/lamb/3909.html
  • http://www.ams.usda.gov/poultry/standards/AMS-RabST-2002.htm