Carcass Traits and Meat Quality of Rabbit, Hare, Guinea Pig and Capybara

  • Antonella Dalle ZotteEmail author
  • Marco Cullere


There are a number of meat-producing animals, generally classified as unconventional, which have a specific historical background of farming and consumption tradition in some areas of the world. In the perspective of a growing world population and consequent rising meat request, these species have been gaining new attention as useful alternatives to alleviate food insecurity, be exploited in intensive production systems for everyday consumption, and be sold in niche markets for high-income consumers and/or for those paying special attention to the healthiness and the image of the food. In this context, the present chapter deals with some unconventional meat species which already have, or might have in the future, a potential for one of more of the above-mentioned-markets. The focus will be on two Lagomorphs, the European rabbit and the European hare, and on two Rodents species, the guinea pig and the capybara. For these animal species, a brief introduction to contextualize their meaning as meat-producers will be provided, then the existing knowledge about their carcass characteristics and meat quality features will be outlined as well as on those factors that can influence them.


Lagomorphs Rodents European rabbit European hare Capybara Guinea pig 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Animal Medicine, Production and Health – MAPSUniversità degli Studi di PadovaPadovaItaly

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