It’s important to know where your food comes from. And when you want to fill your freezer with farm-fresh grass fed beef in Michigan, you might find yourself asking, “How do I buy half a cow in Michigan?”
If your meat-eating family has ever been on a budget, doubtless you’ve asked yourself “how much does a cow cost?” Does it actually save money to buy a half or a quarter of a cow and stow the cow cuts away in an extra freezer, using them periodically throughout the year?
That’s where we come in.
Grass Fed Beef in Michigan
Here at McLaughlin Farm in Jackson, MI, we’ve done the hard work of producing organic, grass fed and grass finished Highland beef. You just have to place an order and you’ll be enjoying delicious beef all winter long!
We sell our grass fed beef in bundles (as well as at the local Farmers’ Market). While we begin our beef sales in late March or early April, the majority of our spring beef production is reserved for the farmers’ market.
That means most of our beef bundles – including those headed to customers buying half a cow – will be delivered in the fall. Just in time to stock up for winter!
How Much Meat Does a Grass Fed Highland Beef Cow Produce?
At McLaughlin Farm, we aim to produce steers that have a live weight of 1100 pounds. This is a reasonable size for Highland cattle and takes roughly 30 months to accomplish.
A Highland steer that weighs roughly 1100 pounds (live weight) will produce approximately 540-600 pounds of hanging weight (measured at the time of slaughter). The net processed weight is generally about 80% of the hanging weight, but how the side is processed has a big impact on the final result.
Note: because McLaughlin Farm dry ages all of its beef for 14-21 days, there is some shrinkage by the time the side is processed.
What Kind of Meat Will I Get if I Buy Half a Cow?
At McLaughlin Farm, we sell our grass fed beef in bundles, not halves or quarters. We believe that bundles provide transparent pricing, and eliminate having to define hanging weight and explain why the net weight is less. The bundles also provide more flexibility, although there is more work involved in putting the bundles together.
The bundles are priced based on the cuts included in the bundle, their exact weight, and the farm-market price of that cut. The bundles are then discounted. The greater the value of the bundle the greater the discount. This pricing method also allows for substitutions when certain cuts are unavailable, or for the addition of cuts (subject to availability), such as additional ground beef.
Our usual cutting order includes the following steaks:
- Rib Steak,
- and Round Steak.
The roasts generally include:
- and Rolled-Rump.
Unwanted roasts can be ground if desired.
Buying Half a Cow: Typical Cuts and Quantities
The “Large Assorted ” bundle includes the largest selection of cuts and is similar in the types of cuts and total weight of a quarter. The “Medium” and “Small” assorted bundles also have an assortment of cuts similar to a quarter, including steaks, roasts, ground beef.
Braising bundles consist primarily of roasts, stew meat, and ground beef.
Steak bundles include a variety of steak. Ground beef can be added.
The description of the bundles represents the target weights of each cut. All cuts varying weight, which can result in a variation in the total bundle weight of +/-10%. All cuts have their exact weight shown on their label. In addition, substitutions of comparable cuts will be made if a listed cut is not available. The number of cuts may vary also depending on the weights of available cuts in our inventory. The price range of each bundle is the price after the discount is applied.
Our sausages or ground beef patties can be added to any bundle, depending on availability. The sausages are made with McLaughlin Farm Ground Beef. They are frozen fresh and require cooking. The sausages do not have any MSG or fillers. One or two varieties have small amounts of sugar. Exact ingredients are available upon request (they are shown on the label). The varieties include Sweet Italian, Hot Italian, and Bratwurst. The sausages are usually available in links, with 8 links per package. Occasionally sausage is available in 1 lb tubes. Sausage is made periodically, rotating the flavors, thus what is available at any given time varies.
Place an Order: How to Buy Grass Fed Beef in Michigan
While we don’t offer the opportunity to “buy half a cow”, we have multiple beef bundle options that can be combined to equate to buying half a cow, and we’re taking orders now!
Bundles can be reserved in advance, and it is best to do so early in the year. A deposit is required in order to make such a reservation. Deposits are non-refundable if the buyer does not complete the purchase. Any balance is due when you receive your beef.
When your meat is ready, we’ll let you know, and the balance will be due upon delivery.
Do you have additional questions about buying beef bundles? Or would you like to place an order? Fill out the form below and we’ll be sure to send you the information you need!