If you love ground beef or slow cooking methods and aren’t too concerned with quality steaks, cull animals are a great budget buy. You can have these animals processed into any cuts you wish or go all burger and they’ll still have the health benefits and flavor of grass-fed beef. However, we don’t anticipate animals in this category to produce tender steaks we’re proud of.
Cull animals are animals that are not performing to the standard we expect from our herd, or they are older animals that have already contributed their genetic value to the remaining herd. As producers of naturally raised beef it’s our responsibility to the herd to maintain and improve the genetics that thrive on grass. This means we must look at the herd through the lens of mother nature’s rules. Cows that maintain healthy body condition, never have any health issues and calve without assistance every year are nature’s gold standard. Animals with these traits are genetically adapted to their environment and their progeny will promote quality of life for the lineage of the herd. These same traits promote the nutritional and tenderness qualities of the meat they produce. Culling animals that don’t make the cut is part of any responsible producer’s herd management and a great opportunity if ground beef and/or slow cooking methods are preferred by your family.
Our whole cull animals are $1.94 per lb hoof weight. This is a non-refundable deposit estimated to be 50% of hoof weight. Our cattle average about 1000 lbs and your deposit is credited towards the final balance.
Contact us to arrange a processing date. Your animal will be dry aged for 14 days, processed into your chosen cuts, vacuum seal packaged, and frozen. When your meat is ready to take home, you may pick it up from the butcher.
We recommend having at least 10 cubic feet of freezer space available for a whole beef.
Please make sure you understand the following and feel free to contact us with any questions before making this purchase. This is a significant investment, and we want you to feel informed and comfortable with the decision before committing your deposit.
How it works:
-Your 50% deposit secures your whole beef. The deposit is non-refundable and is credited to the final hoof weight balance. Because you’re purchasing a “livestock animal”, the transaction is exempt from sales tax. However, the butcher has processing fees they need to be compensated for. Currently, their fees are up to $90.00 for kill and offal disposal, and $0.79 per lb hang weight for custom processing. If you request sausage or other value add products, they have additional fees.
-Understanding live weight, hang weight & take-home weight: Live weight (also called hoof weight) is straight forward. It’s the weight of a live animal. Hang weight (also called carcass weight) is after the entrails, hide, head, tail, and hooves are removed. Expect hang weight to be about 50% of live weight. Take-home weight is the final weight of packaged meat. Expect the take-home weight to be about 50% of hang weight. This is due to further removal of bone and trimmings during processing, as well as a small percentage of water weight lost during dry aging. To simplify, assume a 1000 lb live weight animal breaks down to 500 lbs hang weight and about 250 lbs of take-home meat. Every animal is different and may be more or less.
Note* Your take-home weight also depends on how much of the animal you decide to utilize. If you have cooking ambitions to utilize all the organ meat, suet (for tallow), and bones (for broth), you may request these from the butcher, and more of your animal’s weight and nutritional value will be utilized. A pet dog would really appreciate these products as well. Specifying 75% or 80% lean ground beef instead of 90% will also net more pounds of flavor and nutrition from the weight you paid for. With grass finished beef, the fat profile is healthy and contains extra vitamins and minerals so don’t feel guilty about capitalizing on the extra flavor and tenderness it offers. Consider extra freezer space if you request the bones.
-We will handle delivery of your animal to the butcher on the scheduled processing date. The butcher will record live weight before your animal is humanely dispatched and processed to hang weight. Hang weight will be recorded, and the carcass is then stored in a chill room to dry age for 14 days. Dry aging helps tenderize and improve meat flavor.
Note* whenever possible we will make arrangements for on farm slaughter of custom processed animals. This means that your animal won’t go through the stress of being loaded on a trailer, hauled down the highway, unloaded at the butcher and shuffled through a steel and concrete sorting pen on the last morning of its life. On farm slaughter is simply dispatching the animal in a fast humane way where it feels comfortable and at home. It’s then immediately transported to the butcher to be properly processed. This is the best possible way to honor the animal on its last day and arguably improves eating quality of the meat. This is because stress hormones released into the blood impart a flavor of their own into the meat. There’s no time for this to happen when death comes swift without stress.
-Once we know hoof weight, we’ll calculate your balance and let you know. Our balance is due at that time and payment must clear prior to the butcher’s cut sheet deadline. We can provide a secure electronic payment method, or you can arrange to pay with another method. We’ll be in touch to remind you of deadlines and payment options.
-We can provide assistance filling out the cut sheet or you may communicate directly with the butcher. If you prefer our assistance with the cut sheet, we may need to relay any questions we can’t answer to the butcher on your behalf.
-When your packaged beef is frozen and ready to take home, the butcher will contact you. You must pick it up from the butcher and pay them their processing fee.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions. We’re passionate about raising the happiest, healthiest, and tastiest beef we can. Thank you for considering our beef.
top of page