Wagyu Beef: Why It Is So Expensive
High-grade Wagyu beef is sought after all over the world for its rich marbling and buttery taste. Wagyu beef is one of the most expensive meats in the market that can sell for as much as $200 per pound, and Wagyu Cattle Breeds can be worth as much as $30,000.
What Is Wagyu Beef?
The term wagyu means ‘Japanese cow’. The Wagyu cattle breeds meat contains more intramuscular fat cells, with the fat distributed more evenly throughout their muscle than others. The superior taste and ultra-tender consistency of Wagyu beef make for an unrivalled gourmet eating experience. The signature marbling of Wagyu beef results in creamy, exquisite meat that’s nothing short of culinary heaven.
But Why is Wagyu Beef So Expensive?
The Japanese cows are raised by the breeder until 10 months old and then sold to a fattening farm. There they are fed a mix of fibre and high energy concentrate made from rice, wheat, and hay until the animal is 50% fat. The feed is expensive, which contributes to the price. Wagyu is graded on how much meat can be yielded from the cow and the quantity of marbling, only wagyu A3 – A5 can be sold.
There are more than 300 varieties of wagyu, but the best known and most expensive is Wagyu beef which is butchered exclusively from virgin female cows, steers, or castrated bulls.
There are also a lot of tariffs and quotas on this Japanese import. Other countries are now cross-breeding wagyu with their domestic breeds, which means in the future there could be a lot more Wagyu meat around and the cost could come down.
Wagyu is at its best when prepared simply. Go easy on the seasoning and limit yourself to a bit of salt and pepper rather than overwhelming the flavour of the meat with sauces and marinades. Experts believe that the best temperature at which to enjoy wagyu is medium-rare. It’s vital to let the meat rest for as much as ten minutes after cooking so that the fibres can relax and it can reabsorb the cooking juices that would otherwise end up lost on your plate instead of in your mouth.
Wagyu beef is now available to all consumers at high-quality butchers like Tariq Halal. They offer high-quality halal meat with various cuts and grades of halal Wagyu Beef available for in-store purchase and online delivery across London.