Ag Week 2019 | Meet Kollasch Family Farms
Healthy crops grow healthy livestock.
On our farm we raise cattle from start to finish. Currently, we are calving about half of all of our finished cattle. Our goal is to grow our herd to provide all of our beef directly from our farm. We are focused on raising our beef naturally beginning with the mother cow. Their diet changes throughout the pregnancy as well as during the time she is feeding the calf. The calf stays with its mother until they are ready to be weaned. During weaning we implement QuietWean. QuietWean is a two stage weaning nose flap that allows the calf to remain with its mother in the pasture versus abruptly removing the calf causing stress on both the mother and calf. The flaps let the calves continue to graze while blocking their ability to get milk. The flaps stay in for around 5 days and at the time they are removed they cows are moved off the mother. There is minimal stress and easy transition to feed for the calves. Lowering stress during weaning lowers the amount of sick calves and increases gain allowing us to keep our herd healthy and avoid the use of antibiotics. As they move through their life-cycle, the cattle remain in open spaces. We are looking forward to moving this year’s new calves and cows to a bigger pasture this spring. They are always fed non-gmo feed and never receive hormones at any point in their life.
You may have noticed that our cattle don’t look like other cattle you’ve seen while driving down the road. We proudly raise Pinzgauers, identified by the wide red or black stripe down their side and red or black face. Pinzgauers were first introduced into the United States in the 1974 from Canada, originating from Austria. The Pinzgauer breed has been included in studies performed at the USDA Meat Animal Research Centerfor many years . These studies have shown that Pinzgauers produce meat that is among the most tender of any beef breed and that routinely exceeds other breeds in juiciness and flavour. Because of the enzyme makeup of these animals, the meat retains its tenderness without the use of artificial chemical processes. The inbred docility of the Pinzgauer also decreases the likelihood that carcasses will be dark cutters.
As reported in the Journal of Animal Science in 1994, research showed that Pinzgauers had the highest score (5.16) for marbling among the European Continental breeds. This same report showed that Pinzgauer beef was the most tender at 4.47kg of eight other breeds tested including Angus, Hereford, Limousin and Charolais. On sensory panel scores, Pinzgauer scored highest in flavor of all breeds tested and among the highest in juiciness.
Pinzgauer beef provides the best of both worlds...tender, juicy, flavorful beef without a lot of fat or waste. (American Pinzgauer Association, 2016)
We choose to raise Pinzgauer cattle for their breed purity and their success as mothers. They are not only excellent beef cattle but also excel as milk producers. Pinzgauer calves are typically weaned at a higher weight than comparison cattle due to the high milk production of the mother. We have had a cow supply twins with an adequate milk supply who were weaned at the same weight as single birth calves.
On our farm we take the extra step in caring for our cattle, do the extra research and implement what we have learned from other natural cattle producers to bring you the best beef.