“If you eat better, you feel better,” said Hendrick Leibrandt, owner of Destiny Farm. For the past three years, Destiny Farm has been raising grass-fed, hormone-free cattle.
“There was a higher demand for cleaner, healthier meat. More people were turning to locally grown, local shops, wanting to know where products came from. I had already been exposed to the market—I grew up on a cattle farm raising both the traditional South African beef breed and Angus-Brahman cross.”
At the 40-acre Granger farm, roughly 25 Angus, Hereford, and Baldy cattle are nestled amongst the landscape. Many people are beginning to explore alternative and healthier dietary options, since modern-day health problems are stemming greatly from the foods that we eat. Many consumers are beginning to seek out options to buy “clean” meat.
With any living creature, a healthy diet is an essential part of maintaining overall health. The overall health of our livestock influences the healthiness of the meat produced, and Leibrandt warns that what they consume comes back to us.
“It comes down to one thing: the body needs good cholesterol, which can be found in meat,” he explains. “Healthy products with good taste are appealing to people. We naturally raise our beef to ensure a healthy product. They are grass fed at 80 percent, and we add a little bit of grain to their diet to flavor the beef and keep it tender.”
Leibrandt explains that while grain is not bad for cattle, it is dangerous in excess. Their bodies are built to process only a certain amount of grain. Many cattle farms will feed their livestock an excessive amount of grain to ensure that meat will be marbled with fat, but too much grain becomes damaging to the animals’ bodies.
“When they are given a certain amount of grain, they are given antibiotics to protect their gut and to keep them alive. Since their bodies are no longer healthy, their system does not filter out those antibiotics, and we consume them when we consume their meat. With an animal that does not get fed that kind of diet, there is no reason to give it antibiotics.”
Steroids are often given to livestock to increase their size and, in turn, increase profits. But, just like antibiotics, those steroids will stay in their system and will be transferred to humans through the meat they consume. At Destiny Farm, there is no use of steroids, antibiotics, or genetically modified corn. Soy, which many Americans are allergic to, is avoided. The livestock is actually fed hay that is grown on the farm free of pesticides.
Destiny Farm also takes care to ensure that the cattle consume only clean, fresh water every day. They do not drink standing water, and water storage tanks are cleaned weekly. Destiny Farms sells beef in a variety of quantities, and they include parts that are difficult to find, such as ox tail, heart, tongue, and liver. The liver is edible, Leibrandt explains, because it has not been destroyed by a poor diet.
Beyond healthier meat, Leibrandt points out another very important aspect of grass-fed, naturally-raised beef: the final product is much tastier.
“When you cook with grass-fed beef, you do not have sticky, greasy residue. There is just clean, healthy meat. There is no grease to wash off. When you cook it, there won’t be that film on top of it. Stroganoff, for example, will leave that oil film on that pan. Ask yourself, if it doesn’t look yummy, why would you eat it?”
Gift certificates are available for the holiday season. For more information, contact Destiny Farm at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 330.721.7225 or 330.241.7619.