Farmers may discuss three different weights with consumers: live weight, hot carcass weight (HCW) also called hanging weight, and final weight (also called retail weight and take home weight). Here are the definitions of those terms.
Live weight- the weight of the entire, living animal
HCW- the weight taken immediately after slaughter, but before final trim. HCW ≈ 60% of live weight.
Final weight- the "take home" weight after trim and cutting into useable portions. Final weight ≈ 65% of HCW.
For example: If Live weight = 1100 lbs.
then HCW ≈ 660 lbs.
and Final weight ≈ 430 lbs.of meat
Some farms base their pricing on HCW, which confuses some consumers.
For example: If the price is $2.50/lb. HCW
and the HCW = 660 lbs.
then the price/lb. is $3.85/lb. for the 430 lbs. you take home.
(assuming 660 HCW at 65% yield).
Last updated December 8, 2014