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Discussion Starter #1
Not sure where to ask this question, so I'll ask here. We are taking a steer to the butcher tomorrow. Can someone explain what the process is that the butcher goes through, as far as how do they kill the animal, and then what is involved.

I have heard rumors of the process, and whatever it is, I'm fine with doing. We butcher our own critters too, rabbits, chickens, etc. But I can't do a large animal. However, I am interested in the total process.

Can anyone tell me, start to finish what happens and what I'm going to end up with? I have a big Jersey steer that is going to go to freezer camp.

Thanks for any information!
 

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Check around, phone book yellow pages even, for a mobile meat processor who'll come to your property, kill the steer in the field, cut off the lower legs, tail, head, gut it, and skin it and hang it in his refrigerated truck to take it to his butchering plant. Mine takes the skin away for a little price extra.

He should let it hang in his cooler for about two weeks to dry age it. Then...

He'll cut it up according to your directions for what cuts you want and what innards you want to keep. There are plenty of websites where you can get pictures of beef cuts...just use Google.
 

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agmantoo
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If taken to a processing plant the animal will be moved thru a chute where it will be stunned with an air powered plunger and then hoisted and bled. From there it will be skinned, gutted and placed in a refrigeration cooled room. The duration it stays in the cooler will depend on the work load and the availability of space. From there the animal will be cut up according to your directions as to the cuts you desire. Probably the burger will be co-mingled with meat from other animals. The processor will keep the skin, valued at roughly $75 and the parts that you do not "want". The animal will render approximately $110 worth of parts that you will not be given. Tongue, for example, is $15/lb offshore. You will pick the animal up in frozen packages that appear very small as compared to the animal you perceive you delivered. The processing fee may appear exorbitant compared to the number of packages. You need to learn how to process your own.
 

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LOL, Always ask for the tongue back! That is the best part!

You will want the meat aged for at LEAST a week. To insure that the steer actually is aged that long DO NOT give them cutting instructions until a week after you send him in for processing.
 

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Retired Coastie
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I'll just mention how it starts,,,, A .22 caliber round un-leashed to a vulnerable portion of the animals skull. If you know what your doing the biggest of boys will drop to their knees, (game over) if you miss, well leave it to the professionals.
 

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Here we have a nice guy who comes out to the farm, shoots the animal, skins, guts, quarters and refrigerates it in his truck. He hauls it to the packers, where they let it hang about 10 days. We tell them how we want it cut up, they do that. We specify that we want the bones, ALL of them! We pick it up when they call to say its ready. We get all the bones back for dogfood and a LOT of meat. The head(tongue included), guts, legs, tail, etc, stay where he killed the steer and our dogs eat it all within the next few days.
We are VERY satisfied with these packers.....not all are as honest. :nono:
By the way, the guy who does the first part only charges $40 plus the hide to do all that. Its well worth that for no loading, gas money and time wasted. Plus the steer is never stressed and doesn't have a clue as to what is coming.
We butcher our own goats......the cows we have hired done.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Well, the steer is going tomorrow. We had already established an appointment and have a guy to do it. We don't have enough time ever to do a steer, so I don't mind paying to have it done. I was just wondering about how it is killed, or is it killed, is it just stunned and hung so that the heart will beat and bleed out the body. Well, that was one question anyway. I figure that's probably what they do.

The guy is charging $40 for the kill and then will hang it for 6 days to cool and then do the cutting, etc. We are getting the head back. My husband wants to let nature do its work on the skull and then keep the skull for (don't really want to say ornament or souvenier, neither of those are right), but as part of a landscape project that we are going to do. I wondered about the bones and the hide. I probably don't want the hide anyway, although they are pretty, I just don't really have a good use for it. Don't like cow's tongue, but hubby wants the liver and a friend wants the heart.

We have 3 of them that will be going to freezer camp over the next several weeks.

I guess more or less, I was just curious about it. I'm fine with them taking some of those parts, especially the ones we won't use. You know, we live on this farm. We raise goats, chickens, rabbits, potbellied pigs, ducks, geese, the 3 steers, a burro, and 2 hinnies. We have tried to sell our critters and so far, there are almost no markets in this area for anything we produce. We have to drive so far in order to sell something that we lose all profit in doing it, and we have pretty much decided that trying to sell something from this farm is just a "dream." We are going to raise what we can eat, and on something like these steers, if there is something we can't use and someone else can (like the butcher can sell it), let him have at it. It would just go to waste here and that's not good either. My husband right now is packaging up today's 8 dozen eggs (that were going to be a good seller for us in this area too, according to LOTS of people in the area). I think we have sold probably 40 dozen in the whole 3 years we have been here. We have sold 75 chickens out of 165, and probably sold (for meat) about 15 rabbits (and we have almost 200).

We are fast going broke, so lots of stuff is going to freezer camp. I guess that's why I don't care if the butcher does keep some stuff, we can't use it and I won't have room in my freezer for it before long.

Thanks for listening and for helping me with information everyone! I do appreciate it.
 

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last fall here in new york i got 35 bucks for the hide, i butchered my own then split the carcass with a long blade in my sawzall . the meat locker charged 10 dollars for the cooler then 28 cents to cut and 28 cents to wrap a pound. so keep in mind their not doing you a favor taking the hide off your hands.....mink
 

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I've heard of folks having the heart, tongue and perhaps the liver ground up with the burger. You will get lots and lots of burger.

I suspect you can tell the processor how you want it wrapped, such as X number of steaks or X number of pounds of burger to the package. Somewhat determined by size of family.
 

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mink said:
last fall here in new york i got 35 bucks for the hide, i butchered my own then split the carcass with a long blade in my sawzall . the meat locker charged 10 dollars for the cooler then 28 cents to cut and 28 cents to wrap a pound. so keep in mind their not doing you a favor taking the hide off your hands.....mink
Yes, but this depends on if there are any hide buyers in your area. There are none here that I have found so it would go to waste.
 

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Dutch Highlands Farm
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For me it is very important that the slaughter guy does a clean kill. Both for the meat quality and to make especially sure that the animal does not suffer. After all, I've known the beast since day one. I've been very lucky in all the people I've had do the job have been very, very good. One shot and a straight drop, clean bleed out.
I have my beef hung for 28 days as wastage is not a real issue for me. Makes for beautiful, tender beef.
 
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