If you’re not familiar with whole animal butchery and why it’s become such a phenomenon among chefs and food aficionados, you’re not alone. Only a handful of years ago, beef cuts other than ribeye, filet, and NY strip were unknown to most. People didn’t know where just about any of their food was coming from, the food chain supply was never in question, and quality was only measured by the USDA’s ranking system. Nowadays, people are taking into account factors like sustainability, sourcing, and healthy and ethical growing practices, in addition to great flavor. With that in mind, Farmhouse has not only met the bar, but raised it, developing direct relationships with Texas ranchers to be able to source, fabricate, and process high-quality, locally raised whole animals exclusively for our customers.
What does that mean, you might ask? Well, let’s start at the source. Meet Cole Bolton. He’s not your average rancher. In fact, he’s a banker by day. But when he’s not crunching numbers at his desk, Cole and his family raise cattle in open pasture in Austin, Texas under the name K & C Cattle Co. Their cattle are 100% pasture raised with no antibiotics or growth hormones. K & C proudly touts that their cattle are “bred and fed” on their ranch, only ever leaving when it’s time to process at Walhalla Valley in La Grange, Texas – a low-stress 65 mile distance, which keeps the cattle calm and ensures a healthy journey.
This is where we step in. Farmhouse Delivery works directly with Cole, buying whole animals – not just the individual top-seller cuts, which is what many chain and specialty grocers do. Participating in whole-animal purchasing has a beneficial symbiotic effect for all involved, including the rancher, the planet, and you, the consumer. Let’s break it down:
The rancher benefits from the simplicity and efficiency of the purchase – he or she gets to sell the whole animal to the buyer, instead of having to handle the processing of the animal, managing the sale of multiple separate items, and being left with less-popular cuts with nowhere to sell them. More specific to Farmhouse Delivery’s program, we also have a weekly commitment with our rancher, ensuring that K & C Cattle Co. can depend on consistent sales, enabling them to grow their local business with confidence.
A whole animal program reduces a massive amount of waste. As we stated earlier, larger grocery retailers only buy certain cuts they know to be popular, leaving dozens of pounds of meat left to waste. Farmhouse Delivery uses the whole animal, offering a variety of cuts – both popular and less familiar – and creating custom sausages and ground beef from any extras. With our rancher operating in Austin, moving product requires minimal mileage, reducing the carbon footprint way below industry standards. And of course, we only source from ranchers who use thoughtful, sustainable practices, who work to regenerate the soil and keep their cattle healthy and happy. In turn, mother earth stays happy as well.
You fabulous Farmhouse customers get to reap loads of benefits – we designed it that way! First, our direct relationship with the processor means that we get to dictate exactly what cuts we want from each whole animal we bring in. That means, if you’re looking for an extra-thick cut of ribeye, or are wanting to smoke a special rack of ribs, you can contact our Meat Specialist and send in your request! It’s like having a personal boutique butcher right at your fingertips. Because of our hands-on approach to butchery, we also offer precise traceability on every single piece of meat we deliver. Ever noticed the ‘Lot Number’ and ‘Processing Date’ on our labels? Each one is specific to the exact cow it came from, giving us full transparency into when and where the cow was raised and processed.
Then, of course, there’s the savings. When we buy whole animal, we get a special rate, reducing the price per pound – those savings are passed on directly to our customer, giving you the lowest possible price for the very best meat you can find. And of course, there’s flavor. Our beef is raised with precision – their food and environment are meticulously considered to ensure the best flavor and highest quality. Once you taste it, we feel sure that the flavor will speak for itself.
So next time you slice into that char-grilled steak cooked to perfection, or bite into a thick, juicy burger and think to yourself holy cow that’s good!, we encourage you to do the following: 1. Pat yourself on the back – you did a damn fine job. 2. Remind yourself that this delicious piece of meat you’re loving on came to you from one of the most thoughtfully, intentionally, sustainably constructed meat programs in Texas – and you’re a part of it.