Farmers may, or may not, get better returns with the development of a "groundbreaking" Video Image Analysis system being trialled for objectively evaluating sheep carcases.

The system should put an end to some farmers persistently complaining that slaughterers often rate their animals more poorly than they should.

A consistent objective carcase grading machine will help remove suspicion and mistrust from that element of the supply chain.

The VIA system is being trialled by the MLC, HCC, Eblex and QMS with Welsh Country Foods in Anglesey and E+V Systems. It assesses sheep carcase classification and meat yield. An industry delegation was of the opinion that it had the potential to deliver greater farmer confidence. Current classification systems are dependent on subjective, visual assessment.

Additionally, meat yield predictions are being developed with yield data.