HOW MUCH MEAT SHOULD I EXPECT TO GET BACK?

It is not uncommon for the buyer of a live animal to say, “The dressing percentage of my 1,450-pound steer was 60 percent but I only got 478.5 pounds of meat — where is the rest of the meat?”

For a 1,450-pound animal with a carcass weight of 870 pounds, the dressing percentage is approximately 55 percent and calculated as follows:

(870 x .55%) = 478.5 lbs in your freezer.


The calculation of dressing percentage is based on the hot carcass weight. The hot carcass weight includes bone, excess fat and moisture loss that will not be packed and wrapped for home consumption. The hot carcass weight is not the amount of meat that the consumer will put in his or her freezer. We can help you to determine about how much meat you should get back when you drop your animal off or call with your cut orders.  

 

SOME DETERMINING FACTORS that affect how much MEAT you GET BACK.

1) Fatness – Leaner animals will have higher carcass cutting yields than fatter animals. Excess fat does make your HANGING WEIGHT heavier, however, when it comes time to process the carcass all the excess fat gets trimmed off and thrown away.

2) More muscular animals will have higher carcass cutting yields

than less muscular animals.

3) BONE-IN vs BONELESS- This is a concept that eludes so many people and it can get complex, however, we will try and keep it simple. BONE-IN CUTS will have MORE WEIGHT & BONELESS CUTS will have LESS WEIGHT. However, the AMOUNT of edible MEAT that you get back WILL NOT INCREASE.

4) If the meat cutter leaves more surface fat on the meat cuts, then the carcass cutting yield will be higher than if the meat cuts are closely-trimmed. This is a double-edged sword since many people do not want a lot of excess fat on the sought after cuts, however, every bit of fat you trim off decreases total weight of product the customer will receive back. I believe QUALITY over QUANTITY is the best course of action, however, if you tell us to leave more fat on the steaks then we will do as instructed.

5) The Leanness of the Ground Product – If the ground product (ground beef, ground pork, pork sausage) is made very lean, then the carcass cutting yield will be lower than if the ground product is made with more fat. For example, a typical beef carcass could have more pounds of ground beef if it is made into 70% lean ground beef than if it is made into 92% lean ground beef.

As an additional note: For those that wish to forego many different cut options and get more ground beef or the entire animal turned into ground beef, this will greatly affect your yield as well.

If you have any questions regarding how much meat you should expect to get back, please call us at 785-363-6120!