A Balanced diet for animals too

Following on from the entry about how fat is good for us I thought it worthwhile pointing out that it isn’t just us that need good nutrition but also the livestock we farm for our meat.

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One of the reasons for starting this blog was to provide some daylight for consumers to arm themselves with the facts about what they were buying so they could see if they were getting value for the extra money they spend on “premium” products.

As I have said before, “Organic” isn’t always all it’s cracked up to be and the post on grass fed beef illustrates why that is. Organic meat is just as likely (if not more so) to be finished on corn/cereals and therefore deficient in essential nutrition. By far the biggest impact on the nutritional value of meat is whether or not it’s grass fed, not whether it’s got Organic certification.

As far as I’m concerned if you pay for a premium product then the bare minimum should be adequate nutrition. I don’t expect to pay extra for making me ill. Then I expect taste, texture and a commitment to look after the environment the meat was produced in. Is this too much to ask?

That is why grazing on natural pastures produces the highest quality meat you can buy. We graze our stock on wildflower meadows, reed beds and natural pastures. Other people farm salt marshes or heather covered hillsides and all the meat from these sites will give you a different taste experience. The key to this is the variety of grass and herb species they eat. Would you prefer beef or lamb fed on heather and wild herbs or fed on industrial scale mono-cultures of grass/clover varieties?

In natural swards, some of the herbs even contain medicinal qualities for the animals, reducing the need to intervene with chemicals. They have a higher proportion of essential fatty acids than meat from intensive grass pastures and if you have ever had heather grazed beef or salt marsh lamb then you know all about the difference in flavour already.

MDAL.

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