Angus beef is supposed to be superior to regular beef – in this article, I look at the reasons why this should be and whether or not there is any truth behind this assumption. What is the difference between Angus beef and regular beef?
The Aberdeen Angus breed of cattle was brought to the USA from Aberdeen in Scotland. They are a small black cow that is very hardy. They are known for producing Angus beef that has plenty of fat marbling through the beef making the end result more flavorsome and tender.
The Certified Angus Beef Program
In 1978 The Certified Angus Beef program was started. The idea behind this program was to provide beef consumers with assurances on the quality standards of beef with the Certified Angus stamp of approval. If we think back to the 1970’s the standard of beef was unpredictable and could be of really poor quality. Consumers frequently voiced their dissatisfaction about the quality of beef available in the marketplace. The Angus certification stamp was hailed as a great improvement.
The American Angus Association is the world’s largest registry of beef cattle. The Certified Angus Beef is a division of the American Angus Association, and this is run as a non-profit making section of the Association.
All in all, there are around 30,000 Angus Beef breeders who are part of the association. All the producers are expected to raise their cattle to produce high-quality beef, for sale to the general public the catering industry and for export to over 47 countries around the world. This brand of Certified Angus beef is now one of the oldest and most successful brands in the meat business.
Amazingly the branding and the Certification program has been a great success with an astonishing 1.8 million pounds of Angus beef being sold daily.
In comparison to the USDA designations of Prime, Choice and Select, the Angus Certified is supposed to be superior to these. There are 10 separate quality standards that have to be met to earn the premium name of Angus beef.
Is Angus Beef Superior to Regular Beef?
When it comes to the differences between Angus beef and regular beef some people maintain there is no difference, at all in the taste others absolutely disagree. The best advice to the consumer is to buy both Angus and regular and make your own mind up.
Apart from the breed of cattle, the other influences on the final taste of the meat are ways in which the meat is treated after slaughter. That is the amount of time the meat is hung and the way the meat is stored. These two aspects of meat treatment have probably will have more to do with the quality of the final product than anything else.
Also, that way the animal has been looked after before slaughter can make a big difference to the healthiness of the beef. For example, it has been found in a study that Grass-fed beef has higher omega 3 content in comparison to a corn or cereal fed beef, this affected the health of the consumers. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20807460
Other influences to the taste of your steak are the way you cook and season your steaks just before eating. Certainly, if you look around you may be able to find regular beef that is of the same quality as Angus beef, but with the Angus Association seal of approval, you are guaranteed certain quality standards.
Can you taste the difference?