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I know Jersey are bred more for their milk and fat content, but are they suitable for beef processing. Reason why I ask is the last 2 or 3 times I have gone to the pig sale someone has run some calves through as well. 2 times Jersy sucker calves have come through and only sold for about $50 each. Holstein sucker calves have come though also but they went around $150 dollars each and I know several people around who raise holstiens for beef processing. If Jerseys are just as good for beef processing I might try to buy the next one that comes through for myself.
 

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r.h. in okla. said:
If Jerseys are just as good for beef processing I might try to buy the next one that comes through for myself.
Jerseys make fine beef.

The reason they don't bring much is their fat is yellow instead of white. Just make sure they are cut or you cut them, the bulls are crazy mean.
 

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In France beef with yellow fat is sold at a premium to that with white. The yellow is related to the same orange in carrots as I recall. You can turn of Jersey's fat white by feedlot feeding (no forages).

Ken W. in WC TN
 

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Jersey rate of gain is not as good as most breeds, but I happen to think it is the best meat we have ever raised. It is finer grained, tender and tasty. Most homesteaders, unless they have a really large family, would do better with a nicely finished jersey as opposed to those huge holsteins.
 

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We always do a couple Jersey's each year, the meat is very good. Take heed though, make sure they're cut! Last year hubby banded ours while he was home and somehow managed to miss a testicle on each calf... which I didn't notice until much, much later, when they started giving me grief. We had a terrible time trying to round them up when it was time to go to the butcher, heart in throat the entire time. Thank god for the dogs!
 

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Yep, Jersey is good eating and like stated their rate of gain is slower so they get heavily discounted at the sale barn. In some areas the dairies will just give away bull calves.
 

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we have brangus, have raised two jersey/angus mix for meat for our own freezer-$25 from a dairy farmer down the road. They finish out nicer and quicker than the holstein. You may do better contacting the seller directly. May sell cheaper direct-saves him consignment fees and trucking on the sale. Also, we never buy from the sale barn. Fellow farmer bought three feeders at sale, brought home some wild strain of pneumonia and lost 70 feeders he already had at home. Yes, his at home were vaccinated, the vet was stumped, and he was out his whole year's salary. be careful.
 

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We raised two Jersey steers one year.....I will NEVER do it again. It was the WORST, nastiest tasty, gamey, rank meat we have ever had.

Now, I have had people tell me that we must have "fed them wrong" but we butchered a hereford at the same time, with the same feed that was absolutely wonderful and to die for, so I don't buy that.

The meat tasted like really strong bad venison. It stunk while cooked, and the yellow fat was particularly bad.

I have had other people tell me they had the same problems with it, and others tell me it was the best meat they ever had.....I guess you take your chances.

My husband would kill me if I ever expected him to try and eat another.

Tracy
 
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Well I guess I could take my chances on how well the meat will taste. If not good I could always grind it up for burger. Which is what we mostly eat anyway. And we are use to that gamey taste since we usually harvest 2 to 4 deer every year.
 

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Well, we fill the freezer with deer and elk every year too, but I have never had vension that tasted like that meat.

I just jokingly asked my dh if I should pick up another jersey calf and he snarled at me, lol.

Who knows, you might just end up with the best meat ever? According to some folks, they get good stuff!

I'm off in search of those angus/holstein crosses again this year.

Tracy
 

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Most people I have heard that have eaten jersey, swear it is good.

Were those bad tasting calves cut? I'm just wondering, if they were left intact, perhaps that is why they were nasty.

Jena
 

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One technique I have heard used in France is to actually push the testicles up into the abdomen and then banding off the sac. Basically it produces an infertile bull. They believe they gain like a bull, but look like a steer. Am also told an experienced order buyer can spot them as soon as them come into the sales ring. One of the benefits of both cutting and doing it yourself.

Ken S. in WC TN
 

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Jena said:
Most people I have heard that have eaten jersey, swear it is good.

Were those bad tasting calves cut? I'm just wondering, if they were left intact, perhaps that is why they were nasty.

Jena
Jena
Some of the best beef I ever had was one I butchered that was intact but he came out of a pen of prime fat cattle! I bought him to make cheap hamburger but when I saw him on the rail I quickly went to plan B :) I have never been brave enough to try it again :eek:
Mr. Wanda
Mike
 

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No Jena, they were steers ... I pulled them out myself and fried them :)

I have heard from a few other people who got nasty tasting Jerseys like ours, and other folks swear by them. I'll pick up the crossbred angus x holsteins or full Holsteins myself.

Tracy
 

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Usually, in ultra lean animals, like Jersey's, if they're grass fattened with little or no grain finish, they tend to have a gamey taste. I find the same thing with the longhorns and it doesn't seem as noticeable in beef breeds. I think it's because of the small amount of fat, thus the grass flavor seems to transfer to the meat.

Mike, my butcher tells me that if you remove the bone from a bull or cow post calving, you can avoid any off taste because the hormones are involved in the marrow. I was pretty skeptical the first couple times we've done it but it does work and as long as the bucher will work quick, you shouldn't have any odd taste.
 

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WR way back when before all of the implants there were a few bull feeders. Bulls that would make good steers do great in the lot.The main problem they had was not taste it was to many dark cutters.The meat can be very dark and will not bloom to the red that we all expect.WHEN THIS HAPPENS IT HAS TO BE GROUND TO HIDE THE COLOR. it is caused by mixing cattle into the group preslaughter and stress! They could greatly reduce the problem by going directly from truck to kill floor, but that was to much trouble!The ones fed now are of the ooops variety that were not noticed in the pen until it was to late :)
Mr. Wanda
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As I have noted before I was able to visit a 5,000 head capacity feedlot in Croatia. They are almost all intact bulls. They said if the bulls go on the rail before 18 months old, they do fine. Bulls were in indoor pens about about 20. Lots of room to move about. Slotted floors. Fed corn silage put up dry, spent brewers malt (beer) and a bit of salt. If they had some extra hay it might be thrown into the mix. Cattle were very calm. They said if they had to pull a bull out for any reason, he did not go back to the same pen. He would go into a incoming pen to avoid fighting/stress. In Croatia at least only a licensed vet could medicate cattle. Absolutely no growth hormones. I didn't see any breed which stood out as being more numerous than any other.

Ken S. in WC TN
 

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recent articles in The Stockman/Grass Farmer suggest that GENETICS are the single most important factor in the beef eating experience. There can be great tasting Jerseys and not so great tasting Jerseys (or any other breed). Has the industrial model narrowed our thinking perhaps so that we expect every animal to be the same?
A New Zealand study in the 1990's found that another important variable in the beef eating experience was method of COOKING...for example, long and slow versus fast and hot.
And I recall a Canadian consumer survey which found that consumer's number one complaint with supermarket beef was INCONSISTENCY. One week a roast was tender, the next week a roast was tough...consumers in that survey felt they had a 50/50 chance of buying tender beef at the supermarket.

Just throwing out some food for thought here...
 

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There may be better ones out there, but it would be hard to go wrong with a purebred Angus bull, made into a steer at weaning, pasture raised and then grain fattened.
 
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