We've reached another moment of accomplishment at the farm. We raised our first grass-fed steer and had him processed. We picked up 516 pounds of beef from the butcher today. Two of those quarters, about 250 pounds, were sold to friends. At $2.00 a pound, that covered the processing costs and some of the feed we used in the last six weeks. Not totally self-sustaining, but not bad for a first effort. We also have 250 pounds of beef in our freezer for our own use. I imagine the retail cost of what's in our freezer would run close to $1200. It's exciting to realize that except for the occasional seafood, bacon and sausage, we are now providing all our own meat.
We haven't dealt with the reality of eating our cow yet. I don't know what that first meal will be like but I'm hoping that we can take a page from Native Americans and give thanks for the life that was given so that we might eat. I expect that the peace of mind I feel when serving and eating our own chickens will be duplicated as we enjoy a cow that we know was well cared for and healthy.
We are already debating buying another milk steer verses investing in a Dexter cow to milk and produce calves. With a goal of self-sufficiency, the next project is always beginning.