The Droimeann Cattle Society, in association with a Longford-based meat processor, has announced the launch of its new beef box scheme, That’s Farming can reveal.
This partnership with Valhalla Meats, as recently featured by us here, is the first step in allowing the rare Irish native breed to become a more sustainable venture.
The key objective for the society starting off was to promote the preservation of the Droimeann breed, to maintain a viable population of pedigree animals to preserve the genetic structure and breeding of the animal.
Droimeann Cattle Society chairperson, Tom Keane, told That’s Farming: “The problem we have is the herd is currently small, and too many of the purebred bulls are closely related to our purebred cows.”
“The process we have in place is aimed at avoiding a genetic bottleneck, but we are not too far away in terms of adding a bull that is unrelated to our females, and from there we can grow, and manage to avoid long-term issues.”
Growing the brand
With the success of their breeding programme growing, Tom and the society recognised the necessity to promote the commercial attributes of the Droimeann breed.
The approach from Valhalla Meats gave the society their first avenue to explore this aspect of the business.
“To run a co-operative society like ours, to audit accounts and other things, it costs money and genetic testing is going to cost thousands more.”
“So, with that, we have tried to monetise the breed, and this is a trial with Valhalla Meats, to test the market and see is there a market for the product, and what that market is?”
“We want to reward the people who put in the hard work involved with Droimeann animals. If you bring these animals to the mart, you are never going to get a fair price for them. If they are not your common commercial breeds, you are not going to get any better than a Friesian price.”
Beef box scheme
Meat boxes are available to be purchased via Valhalla Meats’ website, and are available in 5, 10, 15, and 20KG sizes.
All Droimeann beef comes from genetically tested and grass-fed cattle from the Droimeann Cattle Society herd-book allowing for complete traceability from farm to fork.
The meat, which is currently on sale, comes from the Mount Pleasant herd, where cattle are fed along the Shannon estuary.
The future for the Droimeann will be focused on growing the herd and establishing the genetic framework which will allow for great breeding outcomes.