Unit of competency details

AMPA403 - Apply meat science (Release 1)


ReleaseStatusRelease date
1 1 (this release)Current 01/Dec/2015

Usage recommendation:
Supersedes and is equivalent to MTMP404B - Apply meat science 30/Nov/2015

Training packages that include this unit


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 030307 Food Processing Technology  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 030307 Food Processing Technology  29/Apr/2016 
The content being displayed has been produced by a third party, while all attempts have been made to make this content as accessible as possible it cannot be guaranteed. If you are encountering issues following the content on this page please consider downloading the content in its original form

Unit Of competency

Modification History


TP Version




Initial release


This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to apply meat science to the eating quality of meat and to interpret scientific data to predict probable impacts on meat eating quality.

It is a Meat Standards Australia (MSA) requirement that enterprises with a licence Level 1(b) have a MSA Coordinator who has completed this unit or a MSA approved equivalent unit.

The skills and knowledge gained from this unit will enable an individual to interpret meat processing data and to recommend improvements to control and enhance the eating quality of meat products.

This unit is suitable for people working in the red meat industry in a Quality Assurance (QA) or management role.

MSA requirements include adherence to the MSA Standards Manual for Grading, MSA Standards Manual for Saleyard Consignment and MSA Standards Manual for Trade Mark Usage.

This unit must be delivered in the context of Australian meat processing standards and regulations.

No occupational licensing, legislative or certification requirements are known to apply to this unit at the time of publication.

Pre-requisite Unit


Unit Sector

Elements and Performance Criteria


Performance criteria

Elements describe the essential outcomes.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element.

1. Apply knowledge of muscle structure and biochemistry to meat quality and the factors that affect it

1.1 Explain biological mechanisms (both pre and post slaughter) that affect meat quality in beef

1.2 Identify the pattern of tissue development in the body and the pattern of deposition within the muscle and fat deposits, including the extent to which the composition of fat deposits can be manipulated by production factors

1.3 Identify structure of skeletal muscles in terms of the myofibre and connective tissue components and the effect these structures have on eating quality

1.4 Identify biochemical events that occur in muscle early post-mortem and their significance in subsequent meat quality

2. Identify production and pre-slaughter factors that affect meat quality

2.1 Identify impacts of production factors on meat quality

2.2 Explain pre-slaughter factors

3. Identify processing factors that impact eating quality

3.1 Explain pH/temperature window and how it impacts palatability

3.2 Describe role of electrical stimulation in controlling the rate of glycolysis in the carcase

3.3 Explain impact of stretching muscles pre-rigor on palatability

3.4 Describe process of ageing, its impact on tenderness and methods for extending the storage life of fresh meat including the application of packaging technologies

3.5 Describe impact of cooking on palatability of meat

4. Describe quality attributes of meat

4.1 Identify factors that control changes in colour of fresh meat

4.2 Describe development of marbling fat and its impact on palatability

4.3 Explain impact of drip on both the appearance and palatability of meat

5. Identify and evaluate the MSA cuts based grading scheme

5.1 Explain Palatability Analysis Critical Control Points (PACCP) approach to meat grading

5.2 Describe principles behind the development of the MSA carcase pathways system, including tasting protocols

5.3 Establish impact of various production, processing and value-adding inputs on the palatability of beef using the MSA model

5.4 Evaluate potential benefits of a cuts-based grading system to various industry sectors

5.5 Analyse alternative grading schemes and their various attributes

6. Interpret and analyse data to predict probable impacts on meat eating quality

6.1 Predict probable impacts of production and processing on meat quality

6.2 Identify potential solutions for eating quality problems

Foundation Skills

Foundation Skills essential to performance are explicit in the performance criteria of this unit of competency.

Range of Conditions

Unit Mapping Information

MTMP404B Apply meat science



Companion Volume implementation guides are found in VETNet - https://vetnet.education.gov.au/Pages/TrainingDocs.aspx?q=5e2e56b7-698f-4822-84bb-25adbb8443a7


Assessment requirements

Modification History


TP Version




Initial release

Performance Evidence

Evidence must demonstrate the candidate's consistency of performance over time.

The candidate must apply meat science.

The candidate must:

  • explain the processing factors that impact on eating quality, including pH, electrical stimulation, ageing and stretching, to relevant personnel involved in the production process
  • apply relevant communication skills when explaining scientific principles simply and clearly
  • collate and analyse eating quality data
  • maintain currency of knowledge through independent research or professional development
  • identify and apply relevant workplace health and safety, regulatory and workplace requirements
  • identify and recommend improvements that could be made to improve meat eating quality to management

Knowledge Evidence

The candidate must demonstrate a broad factual, technical and theoretical knowledge of:

  • consumer taste testing protocols and how they have been used to set grade standards and develop the cuts-based grading system
  • factors that control changes in colour of fresh meat and other quality factors including drip and marbling which impact on both appearance and palatability
  • factors that occur between the knocking box and chiller assessment and their impact on meat palatability
  • visual and palatability attributes of meat quality that are important to customers
  • physical and chemical changes that occur when meat is cooked
  • anatomical and biochemical determinants of meat palatability
  • factors in animal husbandry, transport, lairage, slaughter, carcase storage, packaging, further processing and cooking that will impact on tenderness and palatability
  • minimum standards of enterprise performance as specified in relevant regulations

Assessment Conditions

Competency must be demonstrated over time and under typical operating and production conditions for the enterprise.

Competency must be assessed in the workplace or under simulated conditions. Assessment is to occur under standard and authorised work practices, safety requirements and regulatory requirements.

A minimum of three different forms of assessment must be used.

Assessors must satisfy current standards for RTOs.


Companion Volume implementation guides are found in VETNet - https://vetnet.education.gov.au/Pages/TrainingDocs.aspx?q=5e2e56b7-698f-4822-84bb-25adbb8443a7

Training component details
The following details are displayed for each different NRT:-

Training packages

- Training package details
- Training package components


- Qualification details
- Qualification components

Accredited courses

- Accredited course details


- Module details

Units of competency

- Units of competency details
- Unit components

Skill sets

- Skill set details
- Skill set components

Click on the Export link to export the NRT information to MS Word or PDF.

Click on the Manage notification link to create or change a notification for this NRT.

When selecting the Display history check box a set of tables will appear displaying a log of historical values describing what has changed and when over time.

If you have access to make changes to an NRT, click on the Edit link on the upper right hand side of the summary box.