is Boxed Beef?
Years ago, meat packers used to sell
beef by the whole carcass called "hanging beef" (now called cattle pack). Over the years, customers wanted to be able to buy
certain parts of the beef carcass without buying the whole thing. To make things simple, the meat packers divided the
carcass into 8 sections: Rib, Loin, Chuck,
Sirloin, Round, Shank, Brisket, Plate, and Flank. These
are also known as the “Primals”.
Once meat is cut into these large
pieces (primals), it can be further cut into smaller, more usable pieces called
Subprimals. Many of the items that
foodservice distributors buy are subprimal cuts.
An example of this would be a
The primal is the Loin, and within the
Loin contains the subprimal, which in this case is the tenderloin. A distributor who wants to sell tenderloins to his
restaurant customers doesn’t want the whole loin (primal), but rather just the
tenderloin (subprimal). The meat packers will
extract the tenderloin from the whole loin and vacuum package it. They will put 5 individually vacuum packaged
tenderloins in a box, creating “Boxed Beef”!