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Whole or Half Cow

How to Purchase a whole or a Half Cow for the Freezer

Brush Brook Farm’s beef is 100% grass-fed. Grass-fed beef has the ideal ratio of the fatty acids omega-3 to omega-6. The omega-3 fatty acid is important to healthy brain function and is linked to lowering blood pressure, fighting depression and reducing cancer. A Brush Brook Farm grass-fed beef animal averages a live weight of approximately 800 pounds. It will result in approximately 400 pounds of usable meat.

Our animals are sold on-the-hoof. That is, you purchase the entire animal which is moved to a USDA facility in your name. The costs you will incur in the purchasing a beef cow include slaughtering, cost per pound of hanging weight and processing (cut & wrap).

A hanging or dressed weight is arrived at after slaughter and the animal has been skinned, gutted with head & feet removed. The hanging weight of a beef cow is approximately 62% of the animal’s live weight. Before processing (cut & wrap of the meat) the carcass is hung to cool. In this stage there is a further unavoidable loss of approximately 20% of the hanging weight due to loss of moisture, trimming, boning and grinding.

A break-down of costs*:

  • Slaughter – approximately $90
  • Hanging weight cost - $3.50 per pound of hanging weight
  • Cut & wrap – approximately $0.90 per pound of hanging weight for vacuum sealing or approximately $0.60 for paper wrap
      * These costs are only approximate. Costs vary depending upon the processor used. But this can give you idea of probable cost.

A typical butchering of an 800 pound animal would result in the following usable meat:

  • Chuck – 119 pounds – to include blades, roasts, steaks, ground and stew meat, pot roasts
  • Round – 83 pounds – to include top round, bottom round, tip, rump, ground beef
  • Thin Cuts – 77 pounds – to include flank, outside and inside skirts, boneless briskets, ground and stew meat
  • Loin – 60 pounds – to include Porterhouse, T-bone, strip, sirloin and tenderloin steaks, ground and stew meat
  • Rib – 39 pounds – to include rib roast, rib steak, short ribs, ground and stew meat
  • Variety – 19 pounds – to include the liver, heart, tongue, tripe, sweetbreads, kidney, oxtails and brains

The waste:

  • Other – 101 pounds – to include fat & bone
  • Loss – 302 pounds – to include the hide, hooves, blood, entrails, etc…**
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