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Selling Grass-Fed Beef

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Little Joe

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USDA inspection allows sales across state lines to be legal. State Inspection only allows sales within state. A real crock to control folks for no good reason.

In Arkansas you have to have USDA inspection to sell individual cuts other wise you have to sell by hanging or live weight by the quarter, half or whole and the buyer had to be a buyer before animal was slaughtered ( part owner of live animal).
 

Stickney94

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Yeah, I probably should have said laws may be similar but enforcement varies widely.
 

Brute 23

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I thought it had to come from a USDA inspected facility to sell individual cuts or packages of meat in texas also. If you go to a normal butcher and have a calf cut up it usually says NOT FOR SALE across the packages.

Im not saying I agree or disagree with the laws but the enforcement will come if some one gets sick or you sell some bad meat.
 

Hpacres440p

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I thought it had to come from a USDA inspected facility to sell individual cuts or packages of meat in texas also. If you go to a normal butcher and have a calf cut up it usually says NOT FOR SALE across the packages.

Im not saying I agree or disagree with the laws but the enforcement will come if some one gets sick or you sell some bad meat.
Yep-has to be either state or USDA inspected to sell individual cuts. Custom exempt is the “not for sale” labels
 

Stickney94

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I thought it had to come from a USDA inspected facility to sell individual cuts or packages of meat in texas also. If you go to a normal butcher and have a calf cut up it usually says NOT FOR SALE across the packages.

Im not saying I agree or disagree with the laws but the enforcement will come if some one gets sick or you sell some bad meat.

I live in a state that has high enforcement from the State Dept of Ag (due most recently to some rogue dairies selling "natural milk" that sparked an e.coli outbreak).

To sell less than say 1/8th of an animal I need to find a state locker that has a "like USDA" inspection.
The state that borders mine (roughly 15 miles away from my home) has a similar law on the books but does not enforce it and selling individual cuts seems to cause no problems for either the locker or producer.

I'm not against regulations for consumer safety. But I also know that the locker that I frequent that is not a "like USDA" participant is the cleanest and best managed locker I've ever encountered. The "like USDA" one I've used leaves me scratching my head in terms of "clean/sanitary".

In my opinion, the truth is that these laws exist for consumer safety but they are kept on the books by large meat packers.

And don't get me started that these regulations exist for meat but don't for say organic spinach fertilized with manure.

the :/tldr version -- check with your state's Dept of AG rules and regulations for meat sales.
 

pdubdo

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I can't hardly stand to buy store bought beef, it's pretty bland. When we go out to eat I rarely get a steak because I can't see paying $20 for something half as good as what I cook at home for $5. I've got kill dates for pigs next fall also, gonna build a pig tractor this winter and start finishing my own hogs starting spring. Also looked into building a few chicken tractors to finish some cornish cross in so I don't have to buy any grocery store meat.
Now I have to google, "pig tractor" because that sounds like something great! :)
 

pdubdo

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Just processed my first 3 cow. 3 years old and didn't breed. Pasture raised/no feed. sold half and kept half. I sold at $6/lb hanging weight and my buyers were happy. However, my final product came in at under 50% of hanging weight...maybe this was because she wasn't finished in any way...gonna trend on next year's cow as well. The beef tastes slightly different than store-bought. Like someone said, "beefier" but definitely not worse. At least the same or better. I also think it depends on the pasture/forage. I've taken deer off other properties that tastes gamey, but the deer I take of my place tastes amazing.
 

Son of Butch

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Just processed my first cow. 3 years old and didn't breed.
sold half... at $6/lb hanging weight and my buyers were happy.
final product came in at under 50% of hanging weight...

The beef tastes slightly different than store-bought. At least the same or better.
I can't imagine any sane person HAPPILY paying $12+ lb for hamburger that
tastes the same or slightly better than store bought.

Selling 1 side of beef 1 time to 1 person does not a market make.
Repeat customers determine the truth to how Happy the buyers actually are with a purchase.
 

Jafruech

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It is very area dependent. Out here $8 a lb for ground beef for grass fed is paid by people all day long by people in denver or the springs. 1/4s and halves are selling for 10-12 consistently too.
 

shaz

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I'm selling halves for 4.30lb all cuts. Around 60% is hamburger.
For me this is break even vs sale barn. I don't make any extra money. The idea is that once people have a lot of beef in the freezer they'll eat more beef than they usually would.
 

Hpacres440p

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Just an observation-my repeat customers have said they love the leanness of my home-raised beef. I did have one (who likely won’t be a repeat) gripe about the flavor of the ground though. I always ask my processor to get as many cuts as possible, with as little ground. Maybe the fat flavor difference is what it is? Very lean, dense ground either way.
 

pdubdo

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I can't imagine any sane person HAPPILY paying $12+ lb for hamburger that
tastes the same or slightly better than store bought.

Selling 1 side of beef 1 time to 1 person does not a market make.
Repeat customers determine the truth to how Happy the buyers actually are with a purchase.
My bad...$3.50/lb hanging weight: I was shooting for a $6/lb final product price and got pretty close to that. and agree with you--I don't have a market :) this was more of a feasibility experiment that went okay. we'll see what happens with the next one.
 

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