CAVE CREEK, AZ - You have a choice about the type of meat you buy and the cut, but one Valley farmer wants you to think twice about what you're feeding your family.
"I feel concerned for my own family and what they eat," said John Holbrook, who has been a farmer in Arizona for more than 40 years.
When Holbrook started out, he said he had a very traditional ranch operation.
And since WWII, he said the goal has been to process beef faster and cheaper by using corn and grains.
"You also have hormone injections in order to spur the growth," he said.
But two years ago, when he realized what that was doing to the human body and the cattle, he changed his entire business model at his family-run ranch in Cave Creek.
"We started out very moderately," he said, talking about his company, JH Grass Fed Beef.
Now, Holbrook said he raises the cattle naturally, meaning without hormones, antibiotics or grains.
He said it's not only healthier for the cattle, because they can roam freely, but he said it's a difference you can see on your dinner table.
"Probably at least 30 percent less overall fat, in a grass fed versus a grain fed," he said.
So when Holbrook looks to the future, he wants to know he's not only leaving behind a healthy business for his son, but he's also creating something his granddaughter would be proud to eat.
"That's a great deal of satisfaction to me," said Holbrook.
Out of all the beef sold in the United States, grass fed beef makes up a very small portion, just two to three percent.
The price difference is a couple of dollars per pound.
After seeing the meat through the entire process, Holbrook sells his cuts of beef at farmers markets across the Valley.
Holbrook added that there are no real government standards for grass fed beef like there is for USDA beef. And he says that true grass fed beef should be only grass fed and not fed grains at any time. You can find more information on grass fed/finished at www.eatwild.com and stores in the Valley where you can purchase grass fed beef.
You can find him Saturday mornings at the Farmers market located near State Route 51 and Cactus Road.
You can also find JH Grass Fed Beef at Luci's Healthy Marketplace and seasonally at farmers markets in Carefree, Glendale and Scottsdale.
Copyright 2010 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
Did You Hear?
Did a woman capture photographic evidence of a UFO earlier this month?
Memorial Day weekend wouldn’t be the same without the backyard grill. The staple of backyard cooking isn’t just for meat either.
Actress Amanda Bynes was charged with reckless endangerment after police say she heaved a marijuana bong out of an apartment window in New York City.
More Northern Arizona News
Coconino County sheriff’s deputies arrested a hitch hiker Thursday suspected of starting small fire.