Healthy Longhorn Beef from Happy Cows
NEXT AVAILABILITY - Early November 2023
The Benefits of Beef - With a Natural Advantage
When nature crafted the Texas Longhorn, the result was an efficient converter of forage into meat that is lower in saturated fat and higher in healthy fats. In today's world of exorbitant beef prices, unknown beef sources and heavy use of GMO, hormones & antibiotics, more and more consumers are concerned with the quality of their beef and are looking to the independent rancher instead of the chain grocery store for healthy, all-natural, locally raised grass-fed lean beef.
For non longhorn folks, Texas Longhorns are genetically a trim and very lean animal, quite unlike the Angus or Hereford types. You'll more often than not see the hip bones and ribs on a Longhorn. This makes their beef much more lean and higher in protein than other breeds - a hugely desirable trait for many beef consumers these days.
Beef is the best source of protein, zinc and Vitamin B12 and is the third best source of iron in the food supply. Beef is also a good source of selenium, which may reduce the risk of heart disease and certain types of cancer (such as prostate) as well as enhance the body’s ability to fight infections. That’s definitely good news for carnivores who crave a healthy lifestyle!
Did you know that red meat can be included as part of a healthy diet? Thanks to Texas Longhorns, today’s health-conscious consumer doesn’t have to avoid tender, juicy steaks that are packed full of flavor. Longhorn beef is leaner than other breeds and is lower in saturated fats... and it has less cholesterol and calories than white meat - including chicken & pork. Including lean beef in a heart-healthy diet can positively impact blood cholesterol levels. Studies have shown that eating longhorn lean beef can help increase ‘good’ cholesterol and reduce ‘bad’ cholesterol in people with elevated cholesterol levels.
For starters, our beef is from a herd of healthy & happy Central Texas pasture born & raised Registered Texas Longhorn cattle. All cows selected for beef are grass-fed and are from fully registered cows. Unless they make the cut to keep as a Breeder Bull, bull calves are steered at around 4-6 months and are then considered a 'feeder', or beef steer. Heifer calves (females) are rarely considered as a feeder (they make more cows, after all). At 24-30 months of age, the steers have reached a good size for butcher and have reached a good cost to return threshold point. We have to make reservations at the processing facility months ahead of time so planning ahead is always part of the process. We always butcher prior to 30 months of age to maintain the highest quality & most tender beef. At approximately 60 days prior to the butcher date, the steers are put on a 'Pre-Butcher Protocol' - a process that adds a tremendous amount of fat, flavor and tenderness to the final product and what is traditionally very lean beef.
While we prefer the lean, all-natural, healthy meat you get from Longhorn Beef, we still like the flavor and juiciness that some additional fat brings to the table, so we learned along the way that the best way to bridge the gap a bit was by using the 'Pre-Butcher Protocol' we have adopted. This 'Protocol' consists of placing our feeder Longhorns in a 1/4 acre pen at 60-90 days prior to butcher to restrict their daily movement and thus maximize tenderness. While in this smaller pen, they are then placed on a high fat, high calorie, high proportion, grain-based diet... along with all the fresh hay they want for the 2 to 3 months prior to the butcher date. The culmination of this protocol results in beef that is both lean and tender and retains all the nutritional benefits of Longhorn beef but has added fat & marbling and a tremendously enjoyable flavor that rivals the finest restaurant aged prime beef.
In today's world of feed-lot beef and heavy corn and grain feeding for added fat, Longhorn breeders have taken a different, more natural approach. Longhorn beef is raised by farmers and ranchers who appreciate the flavor and natural health benefits that these cattle impart in their beef, whether 100% grass-fed of supplemented with grain.
"Lean beef is good for you - and the key word is lean. A heart patient can eat steak every meal if it is in the right proportions. Longhorn meat, on average, contains 10% less saturated fat than that of other cattle. That puts lean longhorn beef on par with skinned boneless white meat of chicken and that fact may come as a surprise to many dieticians."
Dr. Joseph Graham, Cardiovascular Surgeon at St. John's Medical Center in Joplin, Missouri, and a longhorn breeder himself.