- Raised on pastures never treated with chemical fertilizers or herbicides
- Never treated with antibiotics, or growth hormones
- 100% grass-fed, 100% grass-finished
- Never given grains or corn of any kind
TO ORDER, SELECT "Order Here" on the Right Hand Side of our Webpage.
What's the difference between grass-fed beef and grain-fed beef?
A cow's diet was intended to consist of only their mother's milk in the beginning and grass throughout their lifespan. Conventional methods have lost sight of this known fact in order to mass produce beef by pumping cows full of grains and other harmful foods. These methods have also been known to include packing cows tightly in small areas. This cultivates an environment that produces sick unhealthy cows where standard treatments of antibiotics, vaccines, and growth hormones have become the norm. Feed lots are designed to finish cows off on all sorts of substances and grains that they weren't created to digest resulting in abnormal weight gain and sick cows at the time of butchering.
At Yonder Way Farm, we have a great partnership with our good friends, Mark Stang and family. We have a closed herd of about 300 Red Angus momma cows, that provide us with calves each year to butcher. All of our calves are run in Fayette County on several lease pastures that we have. In 2014, we will have nearly 4,000 leased acres for our beef to graze. We have a strict culling program, where we try to cull around 10% of our cows each year and replace them with young heifers from our herd. This allows us to maintain superior genetics for grass-fed/finished calves.
We strive to produce the highest quality, grass-fed beef possible, and after doing this for nearly 7 years, we have found that this comes by butchering calves at a younger age. Most farms will harvest calves at 24-30 months of age, giving bigger calves, but often times, if in a drought year, poor quality calves due to insufficient forage. This has led us to harvest calves at 10-14 months of age, usually yielding a carcass weight of 400-500 pounds.
Our calves can be purchased in bulk or by individual retail cuts. A full list and description of products, along with prices, can be found on the right side of our webpage under the "Order Meat Here" link.
How do I benefit from eating grass-fed beef?
A cow's diet has a profound impact on the outcome of the quality of meat. Traditional methods of raising cows have resulted in beef that is high in fat, high in cholesterol, high in calories, low in omega-3s, low in CLA (conjugated linoleic acid), and low in Vitamin E.
When allowed to be in their natural environment grazing on green pastures from start to finish, grass-fed beef superior in health and quality is the end result.
Grass-fed beef actually contains the same amount of fat as skinless chicken, deer, or elk. This low fat content can also result in lowering your cholesterol (1).
Since omega-3s are made in green plants, grass-fed beef is higher in omega-3s than grain-fed beef. In fact, grass-fed has almost 6 times more omega-3. Cows taken off of grass and put on grain at feed lots lose the majority of their omega-3s.
A human diet with good omega-3 intake has been shown to help your blood pressure and irregular heartbeats (2) among benefit almost every system of your body. Americans are among the most deficient in omega-3s. Twenty percent of all Americans have such low levels of omega-3 fatty acids that they cannot be detected (3). Researchers believe this is partially due to the majority of the cattle in the US being fed grain diets.
Meat from grass-fed animals is one of the highest sources of CLA (conjugated linoleic acid). Studies show that animals raised on grass have almost five times more CLA than animals fed using conventional methods (4).
CLA has been linked to being a powerful defense to aid in the prevention of cancer (5).
Conventional methods of raising cattle have included adding Vitamin E to supplement a grain-fed cow's diet. But studies have shown that even with supplements, grass-fed beef still contains twice as much Vitamin E than those fed synthetic forms of Vitamin E (6).
Grass-fed beef is not only superior in quality and taste, but also in health. The benefits of eating animals raised strictly on grass are better for our bodies. It only makes sense that if you allow an animal to do what they were created to do in an environment they were created to live in, they will not only flourish but also produce meat that can't be duplicated anywhere else.
To view more scenes from around the farm visit, the 'Farm Photos' section located to the left.
References, taken from "Health Benefits of Grass Farming" by Jo Johnson:
(1) Davidson, M. H., D. Hunninghake, et al. (1999). "Comparison of the effects of lean red meat vs lean white meat on serum lipid levels among free-living persons with hypercholesterolemia: a long-term, randomized clinical trial." Arch Intern Med 159(12): 1331-8. The conclusion of this study: "... diets containing primarily lean red meat or lean white meat produced similar reductions in LDL cholesterol and elevations in HDL cholesterol, which were maintained throughout the 36 weeks of treatment."
(2) Siscovick, D. S., T. E. Raghunathan, et al. (1995). "Dietary Intake and Cell Membrane Levels of Long-Chain n-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids and the Risk of Primary Cardiac Arrest." JAMA 274(17): 1363-1367.
(3) Dolecek, T. A. and G. Grandits (1991). "Dietary Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids and Mortality in the Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial (MRFIT)." World Rev Nutr Diet 66: 205-16.
(4) Dhiman, T. R., G. R. Anand, et al. (1999). "Conjugated linoleic acid content of milk from cows fed different diets." J Dairy Sci 82(10): 2146-56. Interestingly, when the pasture was machine-harvested and then fed to the animals as hay, the cows produced far less CLA than when they were grazing on that pasture, even though the hay was made from the very same grass. The fat that the animals use to produce CLA is oxidized during the wilting, drying process. For maximum CLA, animals need to be grazing living pasture.
(5) Ip, C, J.A. Scimeca, et al. (1994) "Conjugated linoleic acid. A powerful anti-carcinogen from animal fat sources." p. 1053. Cancer 74(3 suppl):1050-4.
(6) Smith, G.C. "Dietary supplementation of vitamin E to cattle to improve shelf life and case life of beef for domestic and international markets." Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado 80523-1171