What does it mean to "process" cattle a feedlot? Maybe that word reads negatively to some. But the reality is, in a feedlot, all cattle are processed and it's a good thing!
When cattle arrive at a feedlot from a rancher's pasture they are first evaluated for their health and physical well-being. Any animals deemed sick or weak are immediately isolated and the remaining animals within that same trailer are also not introduced to other animals immediately. Instead, the cattle are brought through a cattle chute, and every animal is given an ID - this is where processing begins. It gives feedlots and their veterinary staff a chance to evaluate each animal's health up close. It also creates another step in traceability. All IDs are recorded and entered electronically - so no matter where that animal goes from here, it's tracked and monitored by more than one person. A whole team is devoted to making sure the beef on your plate has been monitored for safety and quality each step, which starts with processing each animal.
Sometimes we use words that can sound ominous, but the reality isn’t so scary. Safety and quality are important. Making sure animals are healthy and well-cared for and keeping other animals safe and healthy is just part of the story of the steak on the plate.
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