What is the difference between PREMIUM meat and CERTIFIED meat?

At The Blue Goose, just about nothing. All our meat is from animals raised without the use of antibiotics, added growth hormones or animal by-products in their feed. Additionally, all animals are humanely raised, transported and slaughtered.

The one difference ... ? Our organic meat is from animals finished on feed from organically grown grains, while naturally raised animals can be fed conventional hay and grains, making the finished product more affordable to the consumer.

Why call it PREMIUM Beef, why not NATURAL Beef?

Effective may 2004 the CFIA (Canadian Food Inspection Agency), will not allow any domesticated food animal (cattle, sheep, pigs, goats, chicken, turkey, etc.) to be classed as NATURAL.

This is primarily beacause the large scale packers felt people like us received an unfair marketing advantage since most consumers would prefer "natural" products if given the choice.

What does Certified Organic really mean?

Certified Organic means that a product identified by this phrase and/or symbol was produced according to guidelines and standards established by the Certified Organic Associations in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food. The government-approved standards and system of farm inspection form the basis of the certified organic program.

The animals are not given growth-producing hormones or antibiotics. The animals receive preventative medical care, such as vaccines, and dietary supplements of vitamins and minerals. They consume l00% organically produced feed, free from animal by-products. Producers must provide living conditions that accommodate the health and natural behavior of the animals. The animals should have access to the outdoors, shade, exercise areas, fresh air, and direct sunlight suitable to their size and stage of production. All organically raised cattle must have access to pasture. Producers may not withhold medical treatment from a sick animal in order to preserve its organic status. The producer must manage manure in a way that does not contribute to soil, water, or crop contamination. The animals must be processed in certified organic plants.

What is PREMIUM Beef?

We define “premium” beef as beef raised without the use of antibiotics, added growth hormones or animal by-products in its' feed. Additionally animals must be humanely raised, transported, and slaughtered. Our animals spend the majority of their lives on open range, free to enjoy natures beauty and forage at will. Even in winter the cattle are maintained on the range with a free choice hay ration.

What does it mean to age the beef?

Our beef is naturally aged for a period of weeks before cutting. This intensifies the flavor and naturally increases the tenderness. There is also less moisture lost during cooking, which leaves more beef for you to enjoy. Dry Age = less water… up to 20% more meat by weight.

What does an animal actually weigh and what percentage is actually edible meat?

Our angus cross beef are classified as having a medium frame. (Ideal for consumer meat cuts):

  • Live weight of young mature animal approx. 1200 lbs.
  • Hot hanging carcass (55 – 60% of live wt.) approx. 660 – 720 lbs.
  • Dry aging (weight loss: 6-8% shrinkage) approx. 40 – 60 lbs.
  • Boneless weight of actual meat (62 – 69% of cold hanging carcass) approx. 384 – 456 lbs.

So from a 1200 lb. animal you get less than 38% of prime meat. And with the Blue Goose program, you only pay for the ACTUAL MEAT.

What is the difference between butcher paper wrap and vacuum plastic wrap?

Butcher paper is the standard coated brown paper that rural butcher shops generally use. It’s ideal for people familiar with meat cuts and products.

Plastic vacuum wrap seals the meat in clear plastic bags enabling the consumer to see the actual cut prior to selecting it. This method is normally used for retail sales in urban centres.

Either method is satisfactory for preserving the meat, but the plastic vaccum system is more expensive.

Who processes and packages the beef ?

Riverside Natural Meats of Salmon Arm, B.C., a provincially inspected, certified organic processing facility; or Medallion Meats Canada of Falkland, B.C., a federally inspected, certified organic, USDA & EU approved processing facility.

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