Hanging out

Once a carcase is harvested and dressed (the head, feet, hide and internal organs removed), it is then hung in a chiller for around 24 hours until it is the right temperature to be broken down into the basic cuts. The way the carcase is hung during this stage impacts on the quality of the end product, There are two methods used: Achilles tendon hanging and tenderstretch. 


The most common tenderstretch method is to position the hanging hook under the ligament that runs down the back of the carcase, or under the hip-bone of the pelvis. In this position, the legs are suspended at a 90° angle, which limits the contraction of muscles during rigor mortis. This method especially benefits the hindquarter cuts.

ACHILLES - In the more traditional Achilles technique, the hanging hook is positioned through the rear heels. Gravity causes tension in these muscles as the carcase goes through rigor mortis.