"Sie haben sehr gutes Fleisch."
Translation:They have very good meat.
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Yes, Strong declension is used here as there is no preceding article. Further (das) fleisch is neuter and the direct object of the sentence so we use accusative case. Declension for Accusative, Neuter is - es so that it becomes gutes.
A nice link for this is: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_declension#Strong_inflection.5B6.5D.5B7.5D
Another helpful link for working with adjectives. The flow chart is sehr gut! :) http://www.nthuleen.com/teach/grammar/adjektivendungenexpl.html
Why can't I translate it as "they have very much good meat"? I realize very much can also be "sehr viel", but I would not have translated it that way had Duo not hinted at it: when I moused over "sehr" one of translations offered was "very much", that's why I translated it that way... and Duo said I was wrong :/ So which part is wrong?
"Sehr" always means "very." The thing is that some phrases cannot be translated directly between German and English. For a simple example, consider "Danke sehr." The direct translation is simply "Thank you very," which doesn't quite work. The natural "Thank you very much" appears to translate "sehr" as "very much." I imagine that such examples are the reason why one of the hints for "sehr" is "very much."
To be clear, "Sie haben sehr gutes Fleisch" makes no statement or implication about the quantity of their meat. So your suggested translation ". . . very much good meat" does not work.
The difference between 'meat' and 'flesh' as defined by the FDA in 1933: http://chestofbooks.com/food/science/Experimental-Cookery/Definition-Of-Meat-And-Flesh.html#.VbUTmrWIRko and explained here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CgzXkfPOZrM
Why wouldn't it be proper to say in English "They have A very good meat"?
"meat" is (almost always) uncountable in English, so "a meat" would be unusual.
And in any event, the German sentence definitely treats it as uncountable (there is no article or other determiner before it).
That would have a different meaning and a different translation into German. That would mean that one particular meat of theirs was very good:
- They have a very good meat. = Sie haben ein sehr gutes Fleisch.
The original German sentence and the accepted translation both mean that the general quality of their meat is very high.
As mizinamo explained, the phrase "a meat" would be unusual, because meat is usually an uncountable noun. But it is possible to use it correctly. For example, you might say, "Most of their meat is not great. They do have a very good meat, a range-fed tenderloin, that they serve to their best customers. You have to know to ask for it though, and it costs a bit more."