Everett Griner talks about Beefalo or Buffalo, meat consumption is growing in today’s Agri View.
I still haven’t seen any Buffalo beef in markets in my area, but I had a feature news story recently about the growing market for Beefalo. Mostly from the states that produce Buffalo. And there are several of them. Nutritionists say that the meat is safer and healthier than cow meat. I just read that India is now a major beef exporter. Not cow beef, but beef from water buffalo. India has more of these animals than anybody. That’s not all. These animals are India’s primary source for milk. They are bred for dairy purposes. They look like cows. They are slightly larger than the average cow. But they pose no challenge to the U.S. beef export. You see, it is an entirely different consumer market. Well, Beefalo or Buffalo I’m in no hurry, but I would give it a try.
That’s Agri View for today. I’m Everett Griner.
One of our most enduring American images is that of the great American buffalo, or species Bison bison. These huge, shaggy animals once roamed from Canada to Mexico, grazing the Great Plains and mountain areas of our country. Bison were the center of life for the Plains tribes of Native Americans who found in them nearly all the food, clothing, and shelter they needed. Hunted for their furs in the 1600’s and later for their tongues, bones, and meat, it was estimated by 1893 that there were only slightly more than 300 bison left, from numbers estimated at one time to be over 60 million. The following information is about this species which is making a comeback and growing rapidly in numbers.
What is bison?
The National Bison Association encourages the name bison to differentiate the American buffalo from the Asian Water buffalo and African Cape buffalo. The American buffalo is not a true buffalo. Its scientific name is bison and it belongs to the bovine family along with domestic cattle. The bison bull is the largest animal indigenous to North America. A bull can stand taller than 6 feet at the hump and weigh more than a ton. They are strong and aggressive, and can jump as well as deer, outmaneuver horses, and break through fences that would imprison other livestock.
” Beefalo” are 3/8 bison and 5/8 domestic cattle. (The natural result of a bison-domestic bovine cross breeding is a sterile offspring. It has taken years of research to develop this breed.) The advantages of this cross are fertility and easy calving. Beefalo gain weight well on inexpensive, high-roughage feed and are very hardy.
Video from: American Beefalo Association
The American Beefalo Association presents this basic information video about Beefalo cattle and the many benefits of raising and eating Beefalo.