Where’s the beef?!

May is beef month in many states of the U.S. including Minnesota. Beef month doesn’t meet hug your nearest cow, although if you do, proceed with caution.  No actually it’s a month where farmers, ranchers, consumers, and everyone who likes beef or it’s many bi-products should celebrate the commodity.

steak

As I sat contemplating what to write about beef and the wonderful qualities that it offers, I thought, what’s there not to like about beef?  Not only if cooked properly does it taste great, it is healthy too, providing 25 grams of protein in a 3 oz serving (about the size of a deck of cards or a hockey puck)   Beef’s internal temperature to eat must be at 160 degrees Fahrenheit.

Here is a great image from http://www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com/beefsbig10.aspx showing the benefits of eating this meat:

10 reasons why beef is so healthy
10 reasons why beef is so healthy

Whether you enjoy a steak, hamburger, roast, or another beef product you’ll get a great value for your serving and it will taste great.  Now I know many of you are thinking that it’s been so expensive to buy lately.  Have you considered filling up your freezer by buying a quarter of an animal from a farmer?  Some markets will even sell bundles or “baskets” of products that aren’t as big as a quarter of beef.  This can be a better value and won’t take up as much room in your freezer.  This option does cost more money up front, but will save you some cash in the end.

In order to get your meat on the table there are many people to thank along the way.  The farmers and ranchers who raise the cattle work hard 365 days a year to put that food on your table.  There are many different types of cattle operations out there including; cow-calf, seedstock (purebred or registered cow-calf herds), stockers, and feedlots.  Each of these operations work in different ways, but all strive for one goal, to provide safe and great tasting food for your table.  After the farm operations cattle go to be harvested and processed.  In these facilities there are many different jobs and tasks that are completed.  Did you know that 98% of the beef animal is used when it is processed?  That’s a pretty high percentage that is use able and able to be sold.  Make sure to thank your local beef herds-person for working so hard to provide you with a safe product.

Beef at water tank

There are also many great fun facts about beef including:

  • Cattle produce about 25 billion pounds of meat each year
  • The combined value of the cattle and beef industry is around $200 billion
  • The hide from one cow can make 144 baseballs, 20 footballs or 12 basketballs.
  • On average calves are born weighing 70-80 lbs
  • Cows have four stomach compartments; rumen, reticulum, omasum, and abomasum

Facts courtesy of http://beef2live.com/story-cattle-101-hist-breeds-fun-facts-terms-0-104671

Hopefully this post will give you some more reasons to eat beef and knowing more about the food that you’re feeding your family.  Until next time be safe, eat well, and thank a farmer for providing you with a full stomach!

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