Beef born from "mottainai" Going overseas March 3 at 22:10

Beef produced by livestock companies in Shimane Prefecture is now greatly increasing its exports overseas. Boosting the expansion of exports is an initiative that the company is pursuing independently. What is the initiative? (Matsue Broadcasting Station Announcer Takumi Sawada)

Delicious beef born from "mottainai"

We visited the livestock company "Jufeng Farm" in Yunnan City.

The company, Shuhei Ishitobi, was founded six years ago.

The cows that Mr. Ishitobi raises are a little different from the cows we usually eat.

A "calving cow" is a cow that has literally experienced childbirth.

In general, it is said that the meat quality of multiparous cattle is hard due to repeated births, and it is not suitable for cooking.

In many cases, it is used for minced meat, processed meat, and even pet food, but Ishitobi's farm specializes in raising these cattle.

I started this initiative because of an experience I had as a child.

Mr. Ishitobi often ate the meat of the heifer cattle, such as from a nearby farm.

Although he was worried about the firmness, he liked the taste of the thick meat.

Therefore, in 2017, I started a livestock company specializing in calving cattle in order to let people know more about the original taste of calving beef.

. Shuhei Ishitobi, President of a livestock company, said, "It was a shame to see it as something of low value just because it is a mother beef, but since heifer beef is indispensable for Wagyu beef production, I am most happy to be able to increase its potential value at the end and make it into table meat (meat on the table)."

Export started in the wake of the Corona disaster

Currently, the company directly raises about 1000,2020 cows.

Nearly half of this is exported overseas.

The impetus for overseas expansion was the Corona disaster.

Mr. Ishitobi wanted to raise the heifers deliciously, so he went through trial and error in terms of food and breeding environment.

Since the purchase price of heifer cattle is relatively low, it is said that the cost of raising them can be incurred.

After hard work, we finished it to the point where it was delicious enough to ship, and we were steadily expanding our business, but the spread of the new corona infection hit us hard.

Due to the closure of restaurants and refraining from going out, the demand for eating out dropped significantly, and the price of beef also plummeted.

While seeking new business partners, we tried it out to the Kyoto market, and it caught the eye of a local wholesale company that handles exports.

Then, in the fall of 15, it was decided to start exporting together.

In fact, it is especially popular in Europe because you can enjoy the taste of non-greasy lean beef, so the export destination is currently expanding to <> countries around the world, mainly in Europe, including France, the United Kingdom, and Switzerland.

What is another key to overseas popularity?

There are other reasons why Ishitobi's cows are valued overseas.

The keyword is "SDGs".

We are actively working on climate change countermeasures set forth in the SDGs.

One of them is "food".

Mr. Ishitobi's company uses food with linseed oil, a type of cooking oil.

It is said that giving linseed oil to cows can be expected to have the effect of reducing the methane gas contained in cow burps, which causes global warming.

In addition, noodles and pomace that should have been discarded locally are mixed into the feed to reduce food loss.

Another initiative we are focusing on is "Animal Wellfare" = "Animal Welfare".

When you think of a cowshed, you have the image of that peculiar smell.

However, if you smell it in the barn here, it hardly smells.

In addition to frequently cleaning the barn, coffee beans are mixed into the cows' beds to eliminate odors.

The cows are also raised in spacious spaces.

Two cows are placed in pairs, and the paired cows are combined in consideration of compatibility such as pedigree and personality.

It is said that by relieving stress in cows, the quality of meat also improves.

The absence of antibiotics in the breeding process is also one of the major commitments.

Italian buyers who specialize in Japan Wagyu beef also appreciate these efforts.

Italian buyer
: "This beef is very different from other beef, from the taste to the way it is raised, and I think this farm has a very interesting technology when it comes to 'cow welfare.'"

According to the buyer, many European chefs and consumers ask what environment the cows were raised in and use them as a basis for their purchase decisions, and this trend has become particularly strong in the last decade or so.

. Shuhei Ishitobi, President of a livestock company: "In Europe, animal welfare and SDGs are commonplace, or rather, livestock products exist in an environment where they are commonplace, so they taste delicious and we have received a very good evaluation from the fact that there are initiatives to do so."

Making the livestock industry sustainable

Mr. Ishitobi's motto is "sustainable" = "sustainable".

Recent changes in the environment surrounding the livestock industry have further supported our efforts.

One of them is the soaring feed prices due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Ishitobi also thought about what would happen if food became unavailable in the future, and last year he started growing grass and corn as food using abandoned farmland with local farmers.

The livestock industry in Japan is facing various issues such as a lack of successors.

Mr. Ishitobi believes that it will be necessary in the future to create a sustainable livestock industry that can be used overseas.

. Shuhei Ishitobi, President of a livestock company, said, "It will be difficult to continue the livestock industry unless we incorporate SDGs initiatives, and I hope that fattening of dairy beef can be an opportunity to spread it to the world while letting people overseas know the taste of Japan Wagyu beef."

Matsue Broadcasting Station Announcement Takumi

Sawada joined Nagano
Broadcasting Station in 2016, and from 2019
to April to Nagoya Broadcasting Station