Why is Wagyu beef soft and fatty?

Why is Wagyu beef soft and fatty? Japan

Sashi is a characteristic of Wagyu beef

Have you ever heard of the term “sashi”? It is a common name for the sparsely scattered fatty parts of meat, such as marbled meat. You may have notice that only beef, especially Wagyu beef, has beautifully marbled “sashi,” although there are many other meats that are used for food.

In fact, the very name “marbled meat” itself is synonymous with high quality Wagyu beef, so that sashi, or marbled fat, is considered to be the exclusive property of Wagyu beef. However, chicken does not have marbling, and even pork does not have such beautiful sashi.

Even if it is the same beef, Wagyu and non-Wagyu beef have completely different sashi, and no matter what kind of beef it is, its sashi will never be as beautiful as Wagyu’s. So why is it that only Wagyu has sashi? In addition, why is it that only Wagyu has such beautiful sashi?

Meat quality is determined by pedigree

One possible reason is the pedigree of the Wagyu. Over its long history, the Wagyu breed has been improved by crossbreeding various types of cattle in order to improve its meat quality. As a result of this breeding process, there are finally four types of Wagyu in Japan, and among these four types of Wagyu, the Kuroge Wagyu was the one that developed especially good meat quality.

In particular, almost all of the Wagyu cattle in Japan today are descended from the Tajiri-go breed, a breed of cattle that was quite beefy and had good sashi. Furthermore, almost all Kuroge Wagyu cattle can be considered genetically predisposed to fatty and sinewy physical characteristics. Therefore, it is no exaggeration to say that the reason for the beautiful sashi in Kuroge Wagyu is determined by its pedigree.

Breeding methods are distinctive

However, pedigree is not the only factor that contributes to the beautiful sashi in Kuroge Wagyu. This is because even the same Kuroge Wagyu cattle will have different sashi if they are raised in different environments. Therefore, it is safe to say that the way the cattle are raised and the environment have a great influence on the sashi of Wagyu black cattle.

Sashi appears on the meat when the fat content spreads throughout the cow’s body. This can only be achieved by creating a suitable environment in which the cattle are well fattened and by feeding them feed of sufficient nutritional value. Therefore, one of the secrets of the black Wagyu sashi is the effort and skill of the cattle farmer who raises the cattle.

Compared to other meats, it is also easier to add fat

Cattle muscle fiber is more easily mixed with fat than the muscle fiber of other livestock used for meat.

In most livestock, muscle is composed only of muscle fibers, but in cattle, especially black cattle, contracted fat cells exist between muscle fibers, and when cattle store enough nutrition in their bodies, fat is stored in these cells, which gradually grows in size. When the fat cells between the muscle fibers receive enough fat, they are transformed into beautiful sirloin.

The secrets of beautiful sashi are pedigree, breeding, and meat quality

As mentioned above, we have learned that the secret of beautiful sashi only in Kuroge Wagyu beef can be attributed to three main reasons namely: good pedigree, ingenuity in breeding methods, and the fundamental ease with which fat can be added to the increase the meat quality. Only the Kuroge Wagyu meets these three conditions for sufficient sashi, and no other livestock does.

Therefore, the meat quality of Kuroge Wagyu is considered of higher quality than that of other livestock or other breeds of beef, and is highly valued both domestically and internationally.