Five Standards of Excellence
- #1 - Top Choice Quality
- #2 - Black Angus Cattle
- #3 - All Natural Beef
- #4 - Pasture Raised in the Midwest
- #5 - Humanely Treated
#1 – Top Choice Quality
The most important factor in determining the quality of beef is the USDA marbling grade. Did you know that there are different levels of Choice beef available? We buy only the highest end of Choice graded steers for our LAB product line, not inferior levels of Choice that possess very little marbling that are available elsewhere.
We believe this “Top Choice” level of quality combines rich beef flavoring and a high degree of marbling without the excess fat that Prime graded beef can sometimes display. Our 50+ years of experience have shown us that this is level is where we can offer our customers a product they want at a good value. Once you taste Leahy’s Angus Beef, you’ll taste the difference that Top Choice Quality provides.
#2 – Black Angus Cattle
The second most important factor in determining the quality of beef is ensuring only high quality beef cattle breeds are selected. For Leahy’s Angus Beef only use Black Angus Cattle. While there are many good breeds of beef cattle, the Angus ranchers of the Midwest have gone above and beyond in offering a consistently superior level of quality in beef that we feel we can depend for our customers.
What makes Angus cattle a good fit for beef production? Angus cattle are among the best marbling animals – that means they easily develop tiny bits of intramuscular fat that melt when you cook a steak or roast. These small bits of marbling add marvelous flavor to the beef that you will love when you try Leahy’s Angus Beef.
#3 – All Natural Beef
Beef simply tastes better when it is All Natural. Leahy’s Angus Beef has no artificial ingredients or colors and is minimally processed. We never add anything to our beef (except maybe a little Steak and Roast Rub when we’re cooking it!) and only select beef that meets the standards for all natural before it comes into our store.
Leahy’s Angus Beef is antibiotic and hormone free when it is in our case and on your dinner plate. Strict guidelines and testing from both the USDA and FDA ensure that no traces of antibiotics or hormones are in the meat, so you do not need to worry about consuming antibiotics or hormones in Leahy’s Angus Beef. Additionally, the cattle we select for Leahy’s Angus Beef eat a vegetarian diet, not animal byproducts.
#4 – Pasture Raised in the Midwest
You want to know where your beef comes from and what it eats, and we’re happy to tell you. Our cattle spend about 75% of their lives grazing on grasses and other forage plants in open pastures. After that, the animals used for beef production are moved to a separate area where diets are supplemented with grains such as wheat, barley, and corn for about four to six months. They still have plenty of room to move about freely in this area. We feel this balanced diet results in the best tasting beef (not too stringy, not too fatty).
For the number of cattle we source for Leahy’s Angus Beef, we cannot buy all of our animals from ranchers in our immediate vicinity, but we purchase all of our animals from operations in the Midwest. Most of our animals come from Iowa where there are larger beef herds that meet our quality standards. The furthest away we source our animals from is Nebraska.
We believe buying as locally as possible and buying animals that are pasture raised and grain finished is the most environmentally responsible thing to do. Buying from the Midwest cuts down on transportation emissions, and cattle that are raised solely on grasses increase production energy usage by about 250% and take an additional 6 acres per animal to raise. If America’s beef herd was all raised in this manner, we’d need an additional area about the size of Montana to raise them!
#5 – Humanely Treated
The beef industry is committed to humanely treating animals. It is simply the right thing to do. In addition to being the right thing to do, humanely handled animals taste better as there are less bad tasting stress hormones in the meat. Lake Geneva Country Meats and all of our suppliers are constantly inspected by the USDA to ensure humane handling practices are followed during the harvesting process.
We believe that the Midwestern beef ranchers are also committed to humanely treating their animals. 98% of America’s beef herd comes from family farms and almost 80% of herds are under 50 animals in size. The people raising our beef are family farmers who are dedicated to their animals and treat them with the utmost of care and respect.