Grass Fed Moo promotes humane, better-tasting beef

CHARLOTTE – In 2005, when Eileen Blackburn gave birth to twins, she wanted the very best for her babies. So she started researching and buying healthy and mostly organic foods.
When it came to meat, she found that it was hard to find and the prices were outrageous.
So in 2008, she got together with some friends and bought a grass-fed cow that was butchered, packaged and divided. Other friends heard of this and asked if she could do it for them.
By 2009, Grass Fed Moo was born.
Eileen Blackburn and her husband, Christopher Blackburn, own and operate the company together.
“He’s really my employee,” Eileen Blackburn said with a grin. “I pay him in ribeyes.”
All of the beef at Grass Fed Moo is from grass-fed, pasture cows. This means that the cows are allowed to roam to several different pastures each with different grass including clover and fescue.
This way, the cows are eating what nature intended so the meat tastes better. The grass is not sprayed with any pesticide or herbicide, and the animals are not injected with hormones or antibiotics.
The concept for ordering beef or pork is simple. Customers go online and fill out the order form. Once the order is placed, it is anywhere from 3 to 5 weeks before the beef is ready.
In the early spring to late fall, the beef is ready roughly three weeks from the day the order is placed. In the winter months, it may take longer, so that the cows can fatten up.
A cow is bought by it’s “hanging weight” per pound. Hanging weight means the weight of the cow once it is slaughtered and hanging in the freezer; this includes bones and fat.
So a cow in the pasture weighs about 1,200 pounds, but that cow’s hanging weight is 700 pounds; that is what Grass Fed Moo purchases. Then the butcher processes the cow and packages it for sale.
Customers receive a package stamped with the USDA label and the item name.
Eileen Blackburn is a certified meat handler through the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, so she is qualified to oversee the distribution of the meat.
From an average 1/4 cow order the customer will receive: steaks – 3/4-inch thick; four sirloins; three ribeyes; six (two per pack) T-bones (strips and filets); three London broils; three 3-pound chuck roasts; three 3-pound shoulder roasts; two three-pound sirloin tip roast; 40 (1 pound each) lean ground beef packages and four (1.5 lb each) of lean boneless stew meat.
Customers can buy as little as 1/16 of a cow or as much as a full cow. A la carte items such as ground beef, steaks and roasts are also available.
The quality of meat is very important to the Blackburns.
“When you go to the grocery store and buy a package of ground beef, it can contain meat from 100 different cows,” Eileen Blackburn said. “With our ground beef, you know it’s from one animal. That is something I want to be sure of when feeding my family.”
Grass Fed Moo also sells farm fresh eggs by the dozen and free range chicken.
The chicken can be a whole roaster, boneless breasts, legs, ground, tenders and more. All options are available on the order form online. All of the chicken are free range and hormone and antibiotic free.
The company is also working with a local farmer to put produce on the order form and have it available for sale when people pick up meat and eggs.
Grass Fed Moo aims to keep the business personal and the prices as low as possible.
“My vision is really to help people get good quality meat at a decent price,” Eileen Blackburn said.

Grass Fed Moo
Mountain Island area

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