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Assistance required! Why are our briskets/ribs so small!?

 
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infernooo



Joined: 19 Jan 2009
Posts: 16
Location: Sydney, NSW

PostPosted: Sun Jul 19 09 5:56 pm    Post subject: Assistance required! Why are our briskets/ribs so small!? Reply with quote

Hi Folks,

I have a small favour to ask... as you may or may not know, barbecuing (in the low and slow sense) is almost completely unheard of here in OZ land (Australia). As such, many of the cuts you guys use either have completely different names or those cuts are used for other products (e.g. pet mince) or are simply not available as different parts of the cut are attached to other cuts (e.g. part of the brisket may be used in rib roasts, part may be used in flank steak etc), thus proving extremely difficult to find even after 3 years of searching.

I am most concerned with brisket and pork ribs.

Let me say firstly that I have found a source for full size briskets (15-20lb), BUT they are wholesale, export grade wagyu and cost US$20/kg = US$10 / lb, so a 20lb packer costs me USS200 !

The closest non-export non-wagyu I have found is a whole packer kosher brisket, but unfortunately these weigh about 3kg TOTAL (6lb) and is even more expensive - US$20/lb ! So for a measly 6lb, I am paying $120. OBviously I go with the wagyus when I simply have to have brisket as the kosher ones are too small and prohibitively expensive.

I have found packers elsewhere, but they are TINY, most around the 2kg (5lb) mark.

As for pork, our spare ribs are tiny (think of the imported danish ribs that give you guys nightmares) and we don't break them into the different types either (e.g. baby back and spare ribs) because they are so small - 450g (1lb) if we are LUCKY for a "large" rack.

So from what I can tell, we must be slaughtering our animals at a much younger age or not raising them to be as heavy or using different breeds.

So here is my small favour that I am asking... so that I Can work more closely with some butchers and have more information to give them, could I please ask the following?

The next time you are purchasing a big (15-20lb) whole packer brisket, please try and find out:
1.) The approximate size of the cows that the briskets come off - i.e. the steers weight
2.) The approximate age of the cows that the briskets come off

Also, the next time you are purchasing some pork ribs (be they baby backs or spare ribs), could you please ask:
1.) The approximate size of the pigs that the briskets come off - i.e. the steers weight
2.) The approximate age of the pigs that the briskets come off
3.) If they are male or female

If as many people could find out (so I can get a good average from different areas/suppliers), I would REALLY appreciate it.

Thanks!
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k.a.m.
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Joined: 12 Dec 2007
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Location: Southeast Texas.

PostPosted: Sun Jul 19 09 8:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

infernooo, unless you are buying from an experienced butcher most local stores have very little idea about the weight of an animal before slaughter. There is a slaughter house close by and I will try to get some answers for you next week. I am not sure if they process there or not. Here are some links that might get you in the right direction though.

http://beef.unl.edu/FAQ/200702240.shtml

http://www.askthemeatman.com/yield_on_hog.htm
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roxy
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Joined: 29 May 2005
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Location: Wasaga beach, Ontario

PostPosted: Mon Jul 20 09 12:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In Ontario Canada the hogs are marketed from 125 to 325 lbs so we can get some huge racks of ribs from them piggies.

Almost all the beef from here is marketed over 1250 lbs with very few hitting the markets under that weight. Most Brisket packers I have seen are between 12 and 16 lbs.

I have not been able to find any information about the age of meats marketed.
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daddywoofdawg
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Joined: 22 Jul 2008
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Location: Starkweather,ND

PostPosted: Mon Jul 20 09 12:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My two bro inlaws raise beef and there is a hog farm near here;they sell to auction beef in the 800-900 lb range so there problally killed at 1000-1100lbs.and are about 2-3yrs old black angus or herefords.Pigs go to processing at about 6 months and weight 130+ so i'm told.I hear roo is tastey.LOL!
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infernooo



Joined: 19 Jan 2009
Posts: 16
Location: Sydney, NSW

PostPosted: Mon Jul 20 09 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

k.a.m. wrote:
infernooo, unless you are buying from an experienced butcher most local stores have very little idea about the weight of an animal before slaughter. There is a slaughter house close by and I will try to get some answers for you next week. I am not sure if they process there or not. Here are some links that might get you in the right direction though.

http://beef.unl.edu/FAQ/200702240.shtml

http://www.askthemeatman.com/yield_on_hog.htm


Thanks k.a.m I would really appreciate that Smile

daddywoofdawg and roxy: Thanks for the information!


I spoke to a butcher today (a couple in fact), and I can only shake my head...

They said that the carcasses they are getting are around 180kg (400lb), and he showed me the brisket he had cut from it for me... it was a pathetic mini version of the usual US packer I see you guys cooking. I showed him some photos of the 15 pounders that you guys regularly smoke and he said if I wanted something that big, it would have to come off a 400kg (880 lb carcass) animal, and I should "go out west to a crappy butcher" to find that "Crappy quality" meat as the larger cows are "much worse quality" (the western suburbs in my state/country are considered "less affluent", hence the cheap shots at their meat quality from the butcher).
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roxy
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Joined: 29 May 2005
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Location: Wasaga beach, Ontario

PostPosted: Mon Jul 20 09 2:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

infernooo wrote:
k.a.m. wrote:
infernooo, unless you are buying from an experienced butcher most local stores have very little idea about the weight of an animal before slaughter. There is a slaughter house close by and I will try to get some answers for you next week. I am not sure if they process there or not. Here are some links that might get you in the right direction though.

http://beef.unl.edu/FAQ/200702240.shtml

http://www.askthemeatman.com/yield_on_hog.htm


Thanks k.a.m I would really appreciate that Smile

daddywoofdawg and roxy: Thanks for the information!


I spoke to a butcher today (a couple in fact), and I can only shake my head...

They said that the carcasses they are getting are around 180kg (400lb), and he showed me the brisket he had cut from it for me... it was a pathetic mini version of the usual US packer I see you guys cooking. I showed him some photos of the 15 pounders that you guys regularly smoke and he said if I wanted something that big, it would have to come off a 400kg (880 lb carcass) animal, and I should "go out west to a crappy butcher" to find that "Crappy quality" meat as the larger cows are "much worse quality" (the western suburbs in my state/country are considered "less affluent", hence the cheap shots at their meat quality from the butcher).

400 lb.. thats a freakin calf.. You got to find some one who raises beef to get what your looking for. I am sure its out there, you got to search to find it.
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infernooo



Joined: 19 Jan 2009
Posts: 16
Location: Sydney, NSW

PostPosted: Wed Jul 22 09 3:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Roxy, it is tiny isn't it? Sad
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daddywoofdawg
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Joined: 22 Jul 2008
Posts: 3892
Location: Starkweather,ND

PostPosted: Thu Jul 23 09 1:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Try some ROO!LOL sounds like there about the same size.lol
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Kevan
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Joined: 04 Oct 2008
Posts: 357
Location: Md

PostPosted: Thu Jul 23 09 5:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a few beef critters for slaughter every year. 2 year olds 1200-1400 lbs. My slaughterhouse has told me to bring them in when they are two. I believe if they are three there is an additional inspection that must be done.
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k.a.m.
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Joined: 12 Dec 2007
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Location: Southeast Texas.

PostPosted: Thu Jul 23 09 6:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

infernooo, sorry the processing plant no longer cuts there own meat. I believe as roxy said you need to find some one that is processing larger animals. I would not want to dirty my knives for a calf at 400lbs.
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ethernectar
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Joined: 26 May 2009
Posts: 59

PostPosted: Thu Jul 23 09 10:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Look around for an 'organic' rancher. Here in California almost all of our beef, pork, and chicken comes from larger commercial ranchers who bulk-process their meat. (The days of talking to the actual butcher are rare.) However, my folks buy a half-side of beef from a local organic rancher every other year, and they always get great service and great cuts - however they want them.
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infernooo



Joined: 19 Jan 2009
Posts: 16
Location: Sydney, NSW

PostPosted: Fri Jul 24 09 3:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ethernectar: Have tried that, unfortunately the "organic" meat is of similar size Sad thanks for the idea though!
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