If you’re a health-conscious meat lover, you might be wondering whether Kirkland Signature Organic Ground Beef from Costco is grass-fed.
While the answer is not a straightforward yes or no, we’ve done the research to provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision.
From the percentage of lean meat to the sourcing and processing standards, we’ll break down everything you need to know about this popular beef product.
So, let’s dive in and find out if Kirkland Organic Ground Beef is truly grass-fed!
Is Kirkland Organic Ground Beef Grass Fed?
The short answer is no, Kirkland Signature Organic Ground Beef is not entirely grass-fed. While the beef is USDA Organic and raised without added hormones or antibiotics, it is not labeled as grass-fed.
During the winter months, grass grows slower, so cow feed is supplemented with silage and grains. As a result, some of the organic ground beef is not purely grass-fed. However, Costco’s organic beef is primarily grass-fed, and the company sources its organic beef from several California ranches.
Costco also relies on foreign producers from Australia and Canada to meet their organic beef demand. All the foreign beef is organic, grass-fed, and meets Costco’s strict standards for humane treatment of animals, food safety, and sustainable farming practices.
What Does Grass-Fed Mean?
Grass-fed beef is meat from cattle that have been raised on a diet of grass and forage for their entire lives. The term “grass-finished” is often used interchangeably with grass-fed, but it actually refers to cattle that have only eaten grass and forage throughout their lives. On the other hand, meat labeled as grass-fed may come from cattle that were started on a grass diet but later received supplemental grain feed or were finished on a fully grain-based diet. In fact, many “grass-fed” cows spend the last few months of their lives eating grain in feedlots to help them quickly gain weight.
It’s important to note that the USDA’s grass-fed label only refers to the animal’s diet and has nothing to do with whether or not the animal received hormones or antibiotics. If those are concerns for you, you can look for the American Grassfed Approved label, which is issued by the American Grassfed Association and requires animals to be fed a 100 percent forage diet, raised on a pasture, and never treated with hormones or antibiotics.
While grass-fed beef is often touted as being healthier than grain-fed beef, the nutritional differences aren’t significant. Grass-fed beef does have more omega-3 fatty acids than grain-fed beef, but it still has less than 5 percent of the omega-3s found in salmon. Additionally, fat content depends more on the cut of meat than feeding practices. Overall, if you’re looking for purely grass-fed beef, it’s important to read labels carefully and look for additional certifications beyond just “grass-fed.”
Understanding Kirkland Signature Organic Ground Beef
Kirkland Signature Organic Ground Beef is a high-quality and flavorful option for those looking for organic beef. It is 85% lean and 15% fat, which is a healthy ratio of lean to fat. The beef comes in a 1.34 lb pack, which is perfect for families who need more than 1 lb but less than 2 lbs of beef for their meals. The individual packs are perforated, making it easy to divide them between the fridge and freezer.
One serving size of Kirkland organic ground beef is 4 oz (112 g), and there are about 16 servings per container. Each serving contains 240 calories, with 150 calories coming from fat. It’s important to note that the container pertains to the whole three package link, so each Kirkland organic ground beef “pouch” has about four servings.
It’s worth noting that Costco Business Delivery can only accept orders for this item from retailers holding a Costco Business membership with a valid tobacco resale license on file. Tobacco products cannot be returned to Costco Business Delivery or any Costco warehouse.
While Kirkland Signature Organic Ground Beef is not entirely grass-fed, it is primarily grass-fed and sourced from several California ranches. During the winter months when grass grows slower, cow feed is supplemented with silage and grains. Additionally, Costco sources organic grass-fed beef from foreign producers in Australia and Canada who meet their strict standards for humane treatment of animals, food safety, and sustainable farming practices.
The Percentage Of Lean Meat In Kirkland Organic Ground Beef
Kirkland Signature Organic Ground Beef is an 85/15 blend, meaning it contains 85% lean meat and 15% fat. This ratio is considered a healthy balance of lean to fat and is ideal for a variety of beef-based meals, such as tacos, hamburgers, and bolognese sauce.
Compared to most grocery stores, which typically offer ground beef ranging from 73% to 95% lean, Costco’s ground beef offerings are within the 80% to 93% lean range. This makes Kirkland Signature Organic Ground Beef a great choice for those looking for a healthier option without sacrificing flavor or texture.
The individual packs of ground beef are also easy to divide at home, with perforations for easy separation between fridge and freezer portions. This makes meal planning and preparation more convenient for families.
Sourcing Standards For Kirkland Organic Ground Beef
Costco takes sourcing its Kirkland Signature Organic Ground Beef seriously, and the company has strict standards for its suppliers. The majority of the beef comes from San Joaquin Valley farmers in California, who are required to meet Costco’s third-party auditing standards. These standards include humane treatment of animals, food safety, and sustainable farming practices.
Costco also sources organic beef from several California ranches, and all of the beef must be free of antibiotics or added hormones. The animals must be slaughtered and processed at USDA-inspected facilities that comply with the American Meat Institute’s recommended animal handling guidelines. Additionally, Costco requires all of its beef to undergo testing for harmful bacteria and pathogens, including E.coli 0157:H7.
To meet the demand for organic beef, Costco also sources from foreign producers in Australia and Canada. All of the foreign beef is organic, grass-fed, and meets Costco’s strict standards for humane treatment of animals, food safety, and sustainable farming practices.
While not all of Costco’s organic ground beef is entirely grass-fed, the company ensures that its suppliers adhere to high standards for animal welfare and sustainable farming practices. Customers can trust that they are purchasing high-quality organic beef that meets rigorous standards for safety and quality.
Processing Standards For Kirkland Organic Ground Beef
When it comes to processing standards for Kirkland Organic Ground Beef, Costco has strict requirements that all suppliers must meet. The meat is USDA graded and certified, and all suppliers must adhere to Costco’s third-party auditing standards. These standards include humane treatment of animals, food safety, and sustainable farming practices.
In addition, all of Costco’s beef must be free of antibiotics or added hormones. The animals must also be slaughtered and processed at USDA-inspected facilities that comply with the American Meat Institute’s recommended animal handling guidelines. This ensures that the beef is of high quality and safe for consumption.
Costco also requires their beef to undergo testing for harmful bacteria and pathogens, including E.coli 0157:H7. This testing is done to ensure that the beef is safe for consumers to eat.
The Kirkland Organic Ground Beef serving size is 4 oz (112 g), with about 16 servings per container. Each pouch contains about 4 servings. The beef is 85% lean and 15% fat, with a total weight of 4 lbs.