In today’s day and age it’s easy to blindly accept where our food comes from since it’s often prepared and packaged for us in neat plastic containers. But if you’re a true Burger fanatic (or someone who takes pride in learning about what they eat), discovering where your Burgers come from is hugely important.
While you might already know about different cuts of beef (chuck, sirloin, brisket), do you know about different breeds of cattle? There are over 800 breeds of cattle recognized the world over that serve different interests in the food market. Today, we take a look at three of these breeds that are used to make some of the most delicious Burgers around.
Originating in Scotland, this breed of cattle is the most popular for Burgers in the United States. When Angus were first brought to the United States in the late 1800s, they were bred with Texas longhorn cattle to produce the distinct hornless Black Angus we know today. Angus cattle is so prevalent nowadays that they account for more ground beef than the next seven breeds combined. Angus are known for having a large muscle content that are highly marbled.
The popularity of Angus in America is so great that in 1978 Certified Angus Beef® brand came onto the scene. The brand endeavors to certify cuts of Angus beef that meet the highest standards in marbling, sizing, muscle size, and more.
Another British breed, Hereford originated in Herefordshire, England. Their predisposition to longevity and ability to withstand harsh winters has made them a highly sought after breed. They are muscular, moderate to long in length of side, adequate in length of leg, large in size, trim, and smooth. They are also well developed in the regions of valuable cuts: the back, loin, and hind quarters or round.
Hereford cattle has become so prevalent in the U.S. that a governing body known as the American Hereford Association was established with a mission to provide the leadership to record, protect, promote and facilitate the production and consumption of Hereford beef.
Literally translated as Japanese Cattle, Wagyu includes four breeds originating in Japan. Popularized in Australia, Canada, and the United States, Wagyu is beloved for its genetic predisposition for intense marbling and high percentages of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. In the U.S., Wagyu is usually crossbred with Angus cattle resulting in what’s been called “American Style Kobe Beef.”
Similar to the American Hereford Association, the American Wagyu Association was established to promote and uphold the standards for Wagyu beef.