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Lamb Carcase Classification

Council Regulation 2137/92 sets the goal of making the use of the EU grid compulsory for all EU approved slaughterhouses. Commission Regulation (EC) No 1249/2008 of 10 December 2008 lays down detailed rules on the implementation of the Community scales for the classification of beef, pig and sheep carcases and the reporting of prices thereof.

Lamb carcases are classified by assessment of:

  • Conformation (the shape and muscle development of the carcase), denoted by the letters E, U, R, O, P with E being the best and P the poorest;
  • Fat: the degree of fat, denoted by the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 in order of increasing fatness.

A lamb carcase classification scheme in full accordance with the EU grid is in operation in the vast majority of export approved lamb slaughter plants.

Further information can be obtained from Livestock Division, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Pavilion A, Grattan Business Centre, Dublin Road, Portlaoise, Co Laois, Telephone: 057-8694405.