Melissa Wahl provided participants at the February 4, 2015 Meat Processing and Marketing for Optimal Sales workshop a set of carcass meat cuts for beef, pork, sheep and goats. Many of today’s consumer’s have no idea where many of the retail cuts of meat come from on the animal or how to cook them. These cutting charts provide a side view of the animal and have the retail cuts of meat drawn in so consumers know where a certain cut of meat comes from on the animal. Sadly, the only education many of today’s cooks have may have come from their family cooking habits, watching a cooking show on television or possibly they may have engaged the meat cutter at the grocery store for advice. A successfully prepared meat entrée is dependent upon the proper cooking technique. Tender cuts of meat take less time to prepare and are much easier to finish with a tasty, tender finished product. The less tender cuts of meat are ones that come from the areas of the animal that got the most physical use which developed more muscle and are tougher. These less tender cuts require cooking slower at a lower temperature, for a longer amount of time to produce a tender, delicious product that is enjoyable to eat.

A custom cutting card was included for participants to use in the discussion with their processor. When ordering an entire animal for home use the customer needs to select how they want the meat cut up and what size packages will work best for their family. Melissa Wahl discussed how she works with her customers to educate them as to what all comes from the whole animal and how they might plan to fix it to best suit their family’s taste and needs. The cutting card is filled out by the consumer or producer and given to the locker as a guide for turning a whole side of meat into useable cuts for home cooking. Buying meat directly from the locker is different than going to the grocery store and deciding “what is for supper?” That whole animal is cut into pieces, wrapped in white freezer paper, frozen, and labeled. The consumer will pick up the several boxes of frozen meat and store them in their home freezer. They need to know what the name on the package tells them and how to cook that particular cut of meat. This cutting card is the one that Brad Bieckmann uses at the Clay Center Locker as a guideline when packaging the meat to best suit the family that is taking it home.

Meat Charts and Cutting Card
Melissa Wahl
February 2015
Download Charts PDF 4.2 MB

Melissa Wahl raise beef and pork in North Central Kansas with her husband. She direct markets their meat and excels at assisting consumers to select appropriate cuts and providing them with cooking information. The majority of their animals are sold in quarters, halves or whole. Growers can assist consumers to understand how the animal is turned into various cuts and products. Consumers often need help knowing what to ask for and how to get meat products that fit the family needs and cooking abilities. Her presentation will help you to improve your ability to increase sales while retaining strong customer satisfaction levels.

Read more about the Amazing Grazing’s Meat Processing and Marketing for Optimal Sales workshop here.

Amazing Grazing II Partners with Kansas Farmers Union are: Kansas Graziers Association, Kansas NRCS, Kansas Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education, Kansas Center for Sustainable Agriculture and Alternative Crops, Kansas State Research and Extension, Farm Credit, and Kansas Grazing Land Coalition, with funding from North Central Extension Risk Management Education Center and USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.