Spring Beef FAQ

What is Spring Beef? In the UK, what we refer to as “Spring Beef” is called “Rose Veal”.  UK farmers looking for a more humane way of producing veal developed Rose Veal, as the production of traditional milk veal was banned in the UK. In general, Spring Beef is meat that comes from a calf around 10 – 12 months old.

How is Veal raised? Veal, the light color, low flavor, very tender meat is produced from calves under 8 months old that have been on a diet restricted to milk and little to no fiber and iron. Veal, traditionally, has been the product of dairies that separate their calves from their mothers early so the cows can be milked. The calves are then raised on a bottle. Often, the movement of Veal calves is restricted to small pens or hutches. Veal calves are usually raised to the age of 16 – 18 weeks of age before they are processed.

How is Spring Beef raised?  Calves we raise for Spring Beef are left with their mothers and raised on pasture along with the rest of the herd. The additional fiber and iron in their diet produces red meat associated with beef.

Can I substitute Spring Beef for Veal in recipes? Yes, the only difference would be a more beefy flavor.

What is the difference between Spring Beef and SHF regular beef? The biggest difference is tenderness. The Spring Beef is much tenderer than beef from our older calves.

Why does Spring Beef cost more than regular beef? Mostly due to scarcity, Spring Beef tends to be more expensive than beef. Also, processing costs are only slightly less than processing a larger beef and the yields are lower.

Is Spring Beef inhumane? No. A calf raised for Spring Beef lives the same life as our calves raised for beef. Commercially, a beef calf can be slaughtered as young as 14 months old and still be called beef. A Spring Beef calf is only slightly younger. One advantage of raising calves for Spring Beef is that the bull calves do not have to be castrated, which can be stressful for the calf and farmer alike.

What makes Sarver Heritage Farm Spring Beef special? Our system of managing cattle and raising calves is perfectly suited to raising Spring Beef. We allow our cows and calves to wean naturally. The cows typically wean their calves around 10 months old. Sarver Heritage Farm is already producing high quality grass fed/finished beef. Sarver Heritage Farm Spring Beef has the same flavor as our regular beef (maybe slightly milder tasting). So far, it has proven to be leaner, while being less chewy. And unlike Veal/Rose Veal from dairy breeds, beef breeds provide more meat.

Is Sarver Heritage Farm Spring Beef available all year round? One reason we think of Spring Beef as “Spring Beef” is that it is only available in the spring. Due to calving schedule and age restrictions, Spring Beef from our farm is only processed from March through May.

Can I get a Side or Whole Spring Beef? Absolutely, one of the advantages of ordering a Side or Whole is you get to decide how it is cut.