Salad bar beef is the term we coined many years ago to express the protocols of our grass-finished beef. We don’t use the term grass-fed because according to the industrial beef cattle proponents, if a beef animal eats one blade of grass in its life, it’s grass fed. That makes a mockery of the term, of course, but it’s why we’ve developed the salad bar beef phrase.
Beef animals are herbivores. That means they have a unique fermentation system, with 4 stomachs, to metabolize grass, weeds, and clovers. Monogastrics like humans and pigs don’t ferment our food and therefore can’t get the nutrition out of forages efficiently. In natural systems, herbivores don’t eat grain and certainly don’t eat dead chickens and discarded Ho-Ho cakes.
Mimicking wild herds, we move them daily to new paddocks in a mob stocking herbivorous solar conversion lignified carbon sequestration fertilization process. That’s a mouthful, but it captures the symbiosis and synergy that bison and native prairie enjoyed for millennia before modern times killed the bison and plowed the prairies into corn and soybeans.
Using high-tech electric fencing and polyethylene water pipe, we can move cattle from spot to spot with the same precision as a zero-turn mower on a golf course. The patchwork created on the landscape ensures that something is always blossoming for the pollinators and that field birds always have someplace to find cover and raise babies.
This intensive management encourages explosive species diversity in the pasture sward, which is the number one requirement for the most nutrient dense beef.