Why is Piedmontese Beef so much leaner? The answer is in the myostatin gene. This gene gives the Piedmontese breed of cattle the "muscle bound" appearance for which they are known. It also reduces the cholesterol content of Piedmontese Beef. Research done by the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center (MARC) in Clay Center, Nebraska, showed the myostatin gene causes this, and their paper "Beef Leaness Gene Pinpointed" was published in the June 1999 issue of Agricultural Research magazine.
per 3.5oz servingCaloriesFat Calories Total FatSaturated FatCholesterolProtein
Composite average of 10 Better Beef cuts. Source: Warren Analytical Laboratory 1997. Comparison source: USDA Handbook ff8.
Igenity DNA profile testing for Tenderness
Recent advances in understanding cattle genetics now allow ranchers to use DNA profiles to maximize both the management of their animals and the characteristics of the beef they produce. This is not unnatural "genetic engineering" but simply providing a means to look at the genetic potential that an animal already has for producing meat with desirable characteristics. One such trait is tenderness. Certain breeds of cattle are known to produce beef that is rated consistently as more tender by industry standards. The top 4 breeds are Piedmontese, Pinzgauers, Red Polls and South Devons. Of these 4 breeds of cattle, we at Tamarack Farms have chosen the 2 that produce beef that is leaner (less cholesterol) than the others. In this way we can assure our beef provides the most tender cuts of meat while helping you achieve a more healthy, lower cholesterol diet.
Beyond the general breed characteristics, individual animals can be tested on a 10 point scale for the tenderness trait. Our foundation herd bull, Tanner, has a rating of 9 out of 10 compared to an average rating of 5.32 for all cattle. By selective breeding of individuals with high tenderness ratings we will continue to build a herd which will produce the "best of the best" when it comes to tender, healthy beef.