Okay, relax. Here we go…
As seen in tv shows and movies with cowboys and farmers or on your computer background - cattle spend most of their lives grazing on the pasture eating grass. This includes cattle raised for their meat.
The big issue is, in most regions of North America where cattle are raised for their meat, grass does not grow year round. This leaves farmers with a decision of what to do during the off seasons. Commonly farmers send their cattle to feedlots where they would eat corn and grains to fatten them up. In many situations this allows cattle to gain weight faster hitting their ideal weight much quicker than the cattle only on a grass diet due to the higher levels of fat.
The alternative is to shelter the cattle during the off season feeding them grass and hay as if they were still out on the pasture. Very common in places like Australia where grass grows year round - this is becoming a more popular procedure in the United States.
A Cow’s body was designed to process grass, not people foods like grains. So cow’s prefer to eat grass not grains - this means a more natural, healthier and happier cow. When an animal is raised for their meat, it’s the least we can do.
Grass-fed land also requires less fossil fuels than land used to grow corn and grains.
Is there a nutritional benefit?
Grass-fed cows are leaner, less fatty cows. Although not ideal for certain fattier cuts of steak - if you are an avid beef eater, grass-fed meat will save you hundreds if not thousands of calories a year. Besides being leaner and lower in calories, grass-fed beef is also higher in vitamin A&E, has more omega 3-fatty acids and antioxidants, and up to 7x more beta carotene than grain-fed beef which helps lower the risk of heart disease.
The grain feeding finish to cattle is often accompanied by hormones and antibiotics making it less natural.
Sounds too good, whats the catch?
Those who like to eat organic, eat healthy, and/or enjoy the taste of grass-fed beef are willing to pay more for a superior product. This means products, such as jerky, made from 100% grass-fed beef tend to have a higher price point than grain-fed due to their health benefits.
On-top of that, less fat in the meat requires extra care when cooking as it can be over cooked easier than a fattier meat. This will also drive up the price a tad.
Got it, so which should I be eating?
Both grass-fed and grain-fed beef have distinct tastes and their own benefits.
But if you are interested in a healthy lifestyle, the environment or the way animals raised for consumption are treated, we’d insist you’d consider grass-fed beef over grain-fed.
Our Jerky is made from 100% grass-fed beef because we believe in offering our customers a superior, healthier product start to finish.