Grilled Buffalo Steak. Picture obtained from http://www.bisoncentral.com/doc_lib/tamahawkSteak.jpg
We always get questions on the taste of buffalo and the proper preparation and about our meat processing in general. The truth is, buffalo meat is almost identical the beef. They are both a bovine specie and they can cross breed with each other. The main differences people notice and have heard about is the fat content and the raw appearance. Pound for pound, buffalo is leaner, with less fat and saturated fat, fewer calories, more protein, and more minerals. Raw appearance is much more dark red than beef and cuts, like a ribeye, have a slightly different shape. That is the basic info but let’s dig deeper on why that is and how buying local affects your meat choices all around.
What you don’t think about but is also worthy of noting- buffalo is typically not as mass produced as beef. This can affect the way the animals are fed, bred, treated for illness, slaughtered, and processed.
Let’s examine the feeding process, which is arguably the most important aspect of our food supply! Though there are feedlots full of bison, our buffalo is raised on a small family ranch that is located one mile from our processing facility. Compare that with the beef sold at major retailers that are raised in Mexico! The USDA recently rescinded a rule that all meat must have country of origin labeling. Now you have no legal right to know where your meat is coming from. Rest assured we know our grower’s name, address, and even his entire family!
Our buffalo is free range fed. They roam freely and eat the grass they walk on, they are offered grain but are never put in a pen and forced to eat it for weight gain. Beef on the other hand are mass fed into feedlots and the main goal of a feedlot is rapid weight gain. They do this by forcing massive amounts of corn and other grains. The beef also are not allowed to roam free. What happens to you when you eat starchy food and don’t move? You gain weight rapidly and it is mostly fat! Now imagine you are doing that with 10,000 other people in a small space and flu season hits. Everyone gets sick! Now there are 10,000 obese sick people and only 75 caregivers (or in the case of beef feedlots, ranch hands) and they are responsible for your every need including food, water, immunizations, etc. How well will your treatment be? And finally imagine all this is happening in Mexico where the water is unclean and the powers that be are corrupt and don’t force inspections. Are you wanting to make the switch to buffalo and small time processors yet?
Our buffalo is 100% buffalo meat. There are many breeders who breed with beef and produce beefalo. Our breeding ensures the quality standards year after year. The meat is all tested at slaughter and guaranteed to be antibiotic free. Our inspection is administered by the state of Kansas and we are inspected daily from butchering to processing. We follow stringent plans for food safety, personal safety, cleanliness, temperature control, equipment maintenance, and the list goes on. We adhere to e-coli and mad cow screenings regularly. We follow 100 points of quality control daily to make sure that our product is the best.
Our processing is done one animal at a time. We pull one buffalo (or beef, or hog, or lamb) out of the cooler one at a time. We cut, grind, and wrap that entire animal before we move on to the next. Unlike giant slaughterhouses, we can assure you all the ground meat in a package is from the same animal! Ground beef from major processors can contain hundreds of animals in just 1 pound of meat. Our method cuts down on the likeliness of cross contamination. If you are having an animal custom processed then this method ensures all you get is the animal you raised and it was in no way mixed with another.
For all the reasons listed and many more is why you should consider not only the healthy choice of buffalo, but also the safe choice of buying meat from a trusted source that only uses ALL AMERICAN raised, fed, slaughtered and locally processed livestock.