Our Beef

It’s in the breeding, pure and simple

The Angus breed, prized for its marbling which produces exceptionally tender and flavorful meat, originates from the counties of Angus and Aberdeen in Scotland. The first four Angus bulls arrived in American in 1873 most likely from the herd of George Brown of Westertown, Fochabers, Scotland. Angus cattle first appeared in California in the 1880’s.

At Sonoma Natural Beef, we take great pride in the quality of our cattle. The herd is comprised of some of the best Angus that is available in the entire country; 100% are registered Angus, all hand-picked for their genetics that ensures the highest marbling for the most tender meat and flavorful cuts. It is a closed herd which means that every animal in our herd is out of our cows and bulls, and each one is individually tracked throughout its lifespan.

Our beef

Why Grass-fed beef?

Better Flavor – How often have you looked forward to a steak but you take the first bite…and instead of the rich, beefy flavor you imagined, it’s like chewing beef-flavored protein substitute. Until you try Sonoma Natural Beef. Time and time again, we hear our customers say, “That’s what beef is supposed to taste like.”

But don’t take our word about the difference. The online website, Slate conducted a “taste-off” between varieties of steak cuts from corn to grass-fed. The hands-down winner: grass-fed beef. According to the article, every taster…instantly proclaimed the grass-fed steak the winner, commending it for its “beautiful,” and “extra juicy” flavor that “bursts out on every bite.”

According to an article on Huffpost Taste posted on 3/21/2014, “Grass-fed beef makes for a significantly better tasting burger.” The online website The Food Revolution quotes a San Francisco Chronicle columnist, a former vegetarian who now eats meat, but only “grass-fed and as organic and sustainable as possible, reverentially and deeply gratefully,….”

Enhanced Health – Scientific research conducted by the University of California (Berkeley) and CSU Chico found that 100% grass-fed and finished beef has more beta-carotene, vitamin E, Omega-3 fatty acids and conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) than industrially raised beef. CLA is associated with lower rates of cancer, reducing the onset of diabetes and slowing the accumulation of body fat. Steak and ground beef from grass-fed cattle can be considered “lean” or “extra lean.” Grass-fed cattle can be labeled “lower in total fat” than steak from conventionally raised cattle.

Higher Quality – We believe that no other ranch in Northern California produces a higher-quality, more sustainably raised product than we do at Sonoma Natural Beef. All our animals are raised humanely, organically, and never fed artificial feeds or ruminant byproducts.

Feel good about what you eat – The practice of “finishing” beef in feedlots so that they can be butchered at a much younger age, takes enormous amounts of corn, soy and other foods that could feed hungry people instead of cattle. Additionally, because cattle are ruminants which allow them to slowly convert cellulose to protein and fats, this unnaturally rapid growth is dangerous for the animals. “It can actually kill a steer if not done gradually and if the animal is not continually fed antibiotics,” according to The Food Revolution Network. “This leads directly and inexorably to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.”

Better for the environment – Raising corn to feed cattle requires vast quantities of fertilizer which is dependent on oil. Author Michael Pollan says, “We have succeeded in industrializing the beef calf, transforming what was once a solar-powered ruminant into the very last thing we need: another fossil-fuel machine.” The environmental impact of grass-fed beef is as nature intended: grazing on what grows naturally and leaving behind nutrients to encourage the next cycle of native grasses.

Our Beef

Greener Pastures: How grass-fed beef and milk contribute to healthy eating (2006) by Kate Clancy, senior scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), PhD, Nutritional Science, UC Berkley.

In this study, Dr. Clancy states: “Meat from pasture-raised cattle, for example, contains less total fat than meat from conventionally raised animals, and both meat and milk from pasture-raised animals contain higher levels of certain fats that appear to provide health benefits. These nutrition differences arise from the chemical differences between forage and grains, and the complex ways in which ruminant animals such as cattle process these feeds.”