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Meaning of Organic

Discussion in 'Organic Husbandry - Cattle' started by ohwell, Mar 22, 2010.

  1. Mar 28, 2012
    nomad

    nomad Chillin' with the herd

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    Does anyone out there read the Stockman Grass Farmer? Does anyone manage using Holistic Management or mob grazing?

    My understanding about the meat tenderness has to do with how the beef is finished out and stress levels. If you are able to keep a beef gaining 1.5 lbs or more per day for at least the last 2 months, he will marble appropriately and yield a tender carcass. In my own experience (I am a 100% grass fed operation), the meat has been very tender and tastier than anything I ever bought in a store or restaurant. I did have one that I processed who was a little tough, but that was due to him being stressed for too long. Research indicates that if adrenaline is allowed to settle into the muscle, it will toughen the meat as well. He was a trouble maker and it took me an hour and a half to get him loaded and into the processor. My understanding is that they should not be stressed for more than an hour or you risk the adrenaline issue.

    Another issue concerning the meat tenderness has to do with social acceptance. The Europeans, as I understand it, do not process their beeves under 4 or 5 years of age. They like the older, chewier, and tastier steaks compared to what we Americans like. I believe the reasoning for this is due to the feed lot industry acclimating us to young (18 month old) beef being all that has been offered to us for at least 2 generations now. Again research seems to indicate that more mature meat (older and chewier) is actually healthier for us than the young very tender meat.

    We eat our own grass fed lamb, goat, and beef and it is superior to anything in the store in my opinion. My hat is off to all of you out there working hard to provide natural and nutritious food to your families and communities.

    What are your thoughts?

    Enjoy.
     
  2. Mar 29, 2012
    redtailgal

    redtailgal New Member

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    I'm a soft american, lol. I like my meat tender and juicy.

    I like them killed young. I'd rather kill two year old than one older steer. Maybe the older meat is healthier, but I like what I like, lol.

    I dont like to age my beef either...it grosses me out. Honestly, the best beef I've ever had was in the frying pan while it was still twitching.

    I like them killed easy. So, our cattle are bred for a calmer disposition, and are handled in a way that keeps them calm (except when I get kicked, things get uncalm in a pretty quick hurry if I get kicked). So, when our cattle are loaded, they go on easy, come off easy and dont stress as much as the slaughter house.

    Our beef are grown grass fed, the ones we slaughter will have a (very) little grain in the weeks before slaughtering, mostly for ease of handling at slaughter time.

    I agree with you completely, adrenaline has some very adverse effects on meat. Ornery cattle just dont taste as good, stress cattle dont taste as good. It's the sweet cattle, with the even disposition and proper handling that taste the best.

    Although, I do want to add, that a poor butcher can ruin prime beef with a sorry cut. Large slaughter houses are designed for speed, and yield a lesser quality cut and often, a hard kill. Smaller slaughter houses will take more time to ensure a softer kill and a proper cut.
     
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