Grass Fed Beef

 | January 9, 2009 5:55 PM

Several times I have read recommendations to eat grass fed beef.

Reasons to buy grass fed beef.

  1. Apparently more nutritious, anti-cancerous, better tasting and definitely more natural.  This page from Eat Wild lists many of the health benefits of grass fed products.
  2. Buying locally from a reputable ranch is more environmental and humane.
  3. Buying a large package at once allows me to purchase several choice sections at a discounted price and saves me time from having to purchase small quantities of beef periodically.

Reasons not to buy grass fed beef.

  1. The ranches are not near by.  The ranch I chose is ninety minutes away.
  2. I do not know anyone else who is doing this.
  3. I am not sure how much of the package is bones and fat.
  4. If we take a long time to eat the beef will the taste degrade as it sits in the freezer.
  5. Is there an issue with the beef being wrapped in plastic for such a long time?

I did a search for Bay Area grass fed beef and found this article, Bay Area Sources: Free-Range and Grass-Fed Meat & Poultry.  I ended up ordering from the first one listed, Chileno Beef, for several reasons.

  1. They have a nice website.
  2. The beef is 100% grass fed with no antibiotics or hormones.
  3. They have a split-quarter ready for pickup because someone canceled.  Otherwise I have to wait until May.
  4. They are the cheapest 🙂 .  But cheap is relative, it’s about $450 for 100 pounds and I am not sure how much of this is bones and fat.  This beef packages page from another farm gives an idea of what I can expect in the quarter beef package.  And I still have to drive ninety minutes to pick it up but I guess I will save time later from not having to go buy beef every couple of weeks.

I talked with Mike who is pictured on the right with his wife Sally and is the owner of the ranch.  He said they do everything natural but they are not organic for three reasons.

  1. Cows are slaughtered on site (which I think is preferable) than at organic slaughter houses.
  2. Calves at birth are given dewormer which is not organic.
  3. They do not use certified organic alfalfa / hay because it costs them about 50% more.

Morris Grassfed Beef also impressed me.  The ranch is very environmental and the beef is completely organic.

Now I need to find an economical place for buying grass fed pork and chicken.  There is Clark Summit Farm in Tomales, CA which is two hours away but only 30 minutes from Chileno Valley ranch.  90 – 100 pounds of pork is $290 plus $45 harvesting fee.  Their beef prices are a bit more expensive than Chileno but it’s reasonable considering I think they use organic feed.  Luckybird Farm has relatively reasonable poulty prices but they are two hours north in Capay Valley.  I also contacted Silver Springs Ranch in Martinez and “Tastes Like Chicken” Ranch in Watsonville, both only an hour away, to find out their prices.

Here is a Google map courtesy of Eat Wild of all the grass fed ranches in California.

Instead of going through all this effort of finding healthier meat I could just give up and become a pescetarian. 🙂

4 Responses to “Grass Fed Beef”

John March wrote a comment on January 9, 2009

very cool!

Phyllis wrote a comment on January 10, 2009

that is what roger has done. become vegetarian… well, maybe pescatarian, but mostly vegetarian.

[…] if anyone has suggestions what we can do around Cotati, CA which is apparently wine country?  Our grass fed beef is ready to be picked up but since it is such a long drive up there I figured we might as well make […]

fkimplicity » Meat and Global Warming sent a pingback on February 17, 2009

[…] I wrote about grass fed beef.  I ended up buying a split-quarter from Chileno Beef.  The cost ended up being higher than I […]

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