Since the mad cow disease scare a decade ago, meat enterprises started to look for other animals worthy of being served at the dinner table without running any health risks.
Thus, a search began for new species suitable for human consumption and living in the wild or in semi-captivity. European wild boar became the ideal candidate because it provides very healthy, flavorful meat and different textures which are beginning to be well appreciated among meat lovers.
Wild boar meat has a unique taste; it is lean and low in cholesterol which makes it a more healthy option than regular pork. Contrary to what some consumers might think, wild boar meat is pleasant and doesn't have a strong taste. It's linked to the taste of wild meat because in some restaurants wild boar meat comes from hunting old animals which have that characteristic strong flavor.
In terms of texture, some cuts are more tender than others. Loin cuts are the most liked and are more similar to other species. Compared to other foods, the amount of fat and cholesterol in wild boar is very low, and the meat is firm and very high in protein. All this makes it a highly nutritious food. In addition, if the natural food this animal receives is taken into consideration, its proportion of fatty acids makes it even healthier.
Curiously enough, although the type of wild boar consumed is the European type, Chile is one of its leading producers. Wild boar made its way to Chile through different roads. One of these was a batch of animals originating from Germany. The animals were confined to a ranch until they were set free in the Andes Mountains between 1946 and 1948. The second was the natural migration of animals that had been brought to Argentina in the beginning of the 19th century.
The first breeders in Chile were established in 1991, and they have increased in number since 2000 due to technological advances in production and marketing and to funds for development and innovation.
Another animal that is also beginning to be mass industrialized is the zebu, a domesticated Asian ox, widely consumed in Brazil.
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