The Irish Aubrac Cattle Breed Society has announced a new initiative with Valhalla Meats, for the processing and sale of 100% certified Aubrac beef.
This beef will come from pedigree-registered and genotyped Aubrac cattle. Each animal will be certified by the society, and will be processed and marketed by Valhalla Meats, Co. Longford.
Society chairman, James Donnellan said, "We are delighted with this new initiative, in conjunction with Valhalla Meats, to get this premium quality beef out to new consumers.”
“Up until now, Aubrac beef was only available in a limited number of butcher shops, like award-winning craft butchers EWS (Donegal Town), and Tom Walsh Butchers (Skibbereen), but this will make our unique product a lot more available in the marketplace.”
“Aubrac beef is very lean, which suits the health-conscious consumer, but it also has the light grain of marbling, so it maintains the juiciness and flavour."
"So, if you are a beef lover, and haven't already tried it, you will love Aubrac beef", he concluded.
Why Aubrac beef
Speaking to That’s Farming, Paul Davis of Valhalla Meats LTD, a sister company of Goat Ireland, said: “Our family-run start-up meat processing enterprise is delighted to join forces with the Irish Aubrac Cattle Society to form this fruitful partnership.”
“Valhalla Meats LTD researched various breeds with a view to developing brands and decided to go with Aubrac, as the breed has so much to offer.”
“We want to do quite a heavy mince trade due to a demand for leaner mince from athletes and body-builders, so the breed ticked all the boxes.”
Davis said the meat from the French breed of cattle, which first arrived on Irish soil in 1992, is not only marbled, but it is also tender and has a world-class flavour. It has a good meat to bone ratio with very little waste.
“One of our projects is this 100% certified Aubrac beef box scheme. Suitable cattle are sourced through the society from breeder members and animals are slaughtered with meat sold in beef boxes.”
Each beef box contains a varied selection of cuts, both premium and household, with nationwide delivery.
“Boxes are 5kgs, 10kgs, 15kgs and 20kg in size; but other options are available including a 100kg deep-freeze box, which I would deliver personally to a customer’s home.”
“Customers can purchase a half-carcass, so there is no limit in terms of size essentially.”
Davis explained that a 10kg box, for example, can contain two or three smaller roasts, kilos of diced meat and a mixture of some steaks, ribs, or mince.
“The mystery adds to the surprise and can be your inspiration to be more inventive over the stove or the BBQ.” Davis added.
Dairy and organic farming
“In addition to this, we have partnered with Edward Payne, a dairy farmer in Co. Roscommon. He AI’s some of his cows to Aubrac sires and I take back the calves and rear them.”
“This year, we have put Aubrac straws into seventy cows. Whatever does not make the grade for rosé veal at 11-months, will be slaughtered under the young bull category and sold as conventional beef.”
“Other dairy farmers have come forward and expressed a strong interest in linking up in a similar way. There will be a scheme for Aubrac-dairy-bred beef, with an organic Aubrac beef scheme to launch in due course.” Davis concluded.