We’re moving a little bit further south for the next installment of our Native Breed cattle: The Hereford.
The Hereford originates in the West Midlands, and is yet another breed that has evolved to deal with the chilly and rainy climate of the UK.
They’re distinctive in their colours, and are a staple across the British countryside – they can vary in colour although the most common are brown with distinctive white faces.
Although originating in Britain, the Hereford has been exported around the world for well over 100 years, since the late 1800s. They were first sent to the United States, although have since spread all of the world, surviving in extreme heat and cold. They’re an adaptable breed, with a relatively long life and long breeding life, which has made them one of the most popular around the world.
The Hereford breed produces some of the finest quality beef, rivalling that of the Aberdeen Angus. It is slightly lower cost than its rival, but many argue that the texture and marbling produces some of the best beef available.
The Hereford is fast growing, producing tender beef (some argue, more tender than its Angus counterpart, although with a lower grade of marbling). Certain cuts on the Hereford are very developed (such as the brisket), more so than in other species. Due to its long breeding life and other factors relating to its maintenance, cuts from Hereford cows are slightly lower in cost – excellent for the consumer.
Much of the beef that is found in UK supermarkets by local breeds comes from Hereford cows (although this will depend of course on retailer/butcher).
At John Gilmour Butchers we’re proud to stock Hereford cuts as a part of our mission to continue using local, Native breeds to the UK.