MEQ and the AWA enter strategic partnership

MEQ and the AWA enter strategic partnership, collaborating across objective measurement and leveraging insights to drive new value for members

Australian agtech company, MEQ and the Australian Wagyu Association (AWA) today announced an expansive partnership that champions collaborative objective carcase measurement and transformative data utilisation throughout the Wagyu supply chain. MEQ and AWA stated that the partnership demonstrated a shared commitment to precision and quality within the Wagyu industry and brought tremendous new value to association members.

Unveiled at the Australian Wagyu Association’s Technical Workshop, the pioneering partnership sees MEQ assume the role of an objective carcase grading partner for the association. In addition to delivering precise carcase measurements to the association’s base of over 1,000 members, MEQ will also provide unmatched analysis of measurement data, leveraging it for new insights that will drive exceptional outcomes for the Wagyu supply chain. This will be achieved using MEQ’s suite of data-driven, AI-powered tools, which meticulously assess the quality of red meat across an animal’s entire lifecycle.

Matthew McDonagh, CEO of the Australian Wagyu Association said, “Quality is paramount with Wagyu, and we are always on the lookout for tools that can improve the breed and further its reputation as the world’s luxury beef. This is why we are delighted to be embarking on this unique partnership with MEQ that will greatly expand the AWA’s data collection and analytics capabilities.

“With MEQ on board as an AWA objective grading partner, we greatly expand our ability to use high accuracy commercial data from Wagyu producers around the world. This ensures that our members know the exact composition of their product, regardless of their location. With unrivalled insights and analysis into Wagyu product quality traits, we are confident about continuing to build on the leadership position of Australian Wagyu in the global market. MEQ’s suite of tools helps us delve into the science behind the meat and we look forward to working together to advance the production of Australian Wagyu.”

As part of the partnership, MEQ will be the official AWA Progeny Test Program’s objective carcase grading partner; a breeding initiative focused on refining the most coveted traits in the Wagyu sector. Tasked with monitoring intramuscular fat (IMF) data for the Wagyu sector’s core reference population of500 animals each year, MEQ plays a crucial role in assessing and optimising the outcomes for superior traits and marbling. The data collected will not only guide the program’s evolution but will also be disseminated to participants across the entire supply chain, fostering informed decision-making at every stage.

MEQ grading data and analysis will also be incorporated into the association’s BREEDPLAN initiative; an industry-wide database that documents the estimated breeding value of animals and serves as a benchmark for genetic performance.

Remo Carbone, CEO of MEQ said, “Australian Wagyu has always stood out within the global red meat industry. MEQ is thrilled by our new partnership that will arm association members with actionable insights derived directly from measurement data that can be used to make the best business decisions. We are also excited to participate in the Progeny Test Program and BREEDPLAN to help further the Wagyu breed as a whole.”

About MEQ

MEQ is a Melbourne-based agtech start-up working to further advance the global meat industry towards objectively measuring meat quality. MEQ technology utilises spectral analysis to determine the intramuscular fat percentage (IMF) or eating quality of meat on a carcase-by-carcase basis. The innovative technology amalgamates physics, chemistry, and biology with machine learning to provide meat processors with a benchmark to improve the quality of their product. MEQ provides real-time information to meat processors, which can be shared up the supply chain (distributors, butchers, consumers) and down the supply chain(on-farm growers).

Important Notice and Disclaimer

It is very important that you appreciate when viewing the AWA database that the information contained on the AWA database, including but not limited to pedigree, DNA information, Estimated Breeding Values (EBVs) and Index values, is based on data supplied by members and/or third parties.

Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the information reported through AWA, AWA officers and employees assume no responsibility for its content, use or interpretation. AWA disclaims all liability (including without limitation, liability in negligence) for all expenses, losses, damages and costs you may incur as a result of the use by you of the data on this AWA database and the information supplied by ABRI and AGBU being inaccurate or incomplete in any way for any reason.

Regarding EBVs and Index values, it is very important to appreciate, and you need to be aware that:

  • EBVs are derived using Wagyu Single Step BREEDPLAN technology developed independently by the Animal Genetics and Breeding Unit (AGBU), using the information contained within the AWA database.
  • AGBU is a joint venture of NSW Department of Primary Industries and the University of New England, which receives funding for this purpose from Meat and Livestock Australia Limited.
  • AWA relies solely on advice provided by AGBU and ABRI in accepting Wagyu Single Step BREEDPLAN software.
  • EBVs published in Wagyu Single Step BREEDPLAN are estimates of genetic potential of individual animals and may not reflect the raw animal phenotype.
  • EBVs can only be directly compared to other EBVs calculated in the same monthly Wagyu Group BREEDPLAN analysis.

Regarding pedigree and DNA testing results submitted to the AWA, it is very important to appreciate, and you need to be aware that:

  • Pedigree and DNA data submitted and supplied to AWA may have errors in it which cannot be detected without further DNA testing.
  • Technology may have advanced since a particular test was undertaken so that previous inaccuracies which were not detectable are now able to be detected by current testing technology.
  • AWA estimates that less than 1% of the pedigree entries, ownership or breeding details in the AWA Herdbook may have errors or which may be misleading. For this reason, users ought to consider if they need to obtain independent testing of the relevant animal (if possible) to ensure that the data is accurate.

Regarding prefectural content, it is very important to appreciate, and you need to be aware that:

  • Prefectural content is based on the estimation of prefectural origin from Japanese breeding records of 201 foundation sires and 168 foundation dams.  As genotype-based parent verification is not used in Japan, and full Japanese registration certificates are not available for all foundation animals, exact prefectural composition for these sires and dams cannot be validated.
  • The calculation of prefectural content for Australian Herdbook animals relies on the accuracy of pedigree records and DNA samples provided by AWA members.
  • The reporting of prefectural content for animals within the AWA Herdbook relies on the calculation provided by ABRI.

If you consider that you do not understand or appreciate the nature and extent of the data provided on this website or the EBVs of a particular animal, then AWA strongly recommends that you seek independent expert advice.