Meat

Reporter: Gavin Alder

Australians are eating less red meat now than we have in history. Some may be cutting back because of health concerns, others may be put off by the steeply rising prices at the supermarkets. If it's price that puts you off red meat, now is the time to think again. Beef and lamb prices should be plummeting and to prove it one wholesaler is throwing open his doors to sell meat to the public at ridiculous prices.

"There is no reason Australians should be paying high prices for high quality meat. So much of our meat is sold through supermarkets and the supermarkets aren't selling great quality meat so Australians are missing out. Especially now, the global economic meltdown means the price of meat should be on the way down" says Andrew McDonald.

"No better time whatsoever and in particular because for that exact reason we have a situation where there's a reduction of people eating in hotels, restaurants, fine dining restaurants and that very good high quality is actually getting cheaper at the moment" adds Andrew.

Andrew McDonald has made a business out of supplying high grade meat to hotels and restaurants. Fewer diners means less demand.

Plus key overseas markets Japan, the US and Korea are cancelling orders so tonnes of our best quality beef and lamb are looking for somewhere to go.

Andrew is grabbing all he can to sell direct to the public. 'I'm not sure if I'm shaking things up. I am simply giving my consumers meat that isn't normally available in Australia."

Like wagyu beef - a hit in Japan for those who can afford it.

"This would sell for close to $400 a kilo in Japan. I've got 2000 kilos left off from an overseas order $29.99 this weekend" says Andrew.

It is a carnivore's playground. Meat Andrew claims is way better than supermarket quality at half the cost, sometimes less.

'We sell them whole for $100 a lamb or $55 a half so we'll cut it, pack it, do the lot for ya."

He's throwing open the doors to his warehouse at Yatala south of Brisbane to the public every weekend, starting tomorrow. It's not just the lambs that are hooked.

Sixth generation sheep farmers James and Hugh Bowman have found selling direct to the public beats dealing with the middlemen.

"Things were pretty tough in the country and we thought how better can we market our product and we decided to go straight to the consumer."

They breed them, they deliver them, the end user pays less than half price.

The internet has made it possible. NSW company Springhill Beef saw it's business multiply tenfold in a couple of years and now supplies beef direct from the farm to customers across the country.

Robbie Shaw's farm is in Esk north west of Brisbane. Her internet business Boutique Meats is just a mouse click away.

"My beef is raised bred in the country goes through my little accredited feed lot, it goes through a local abattoir and butcher shop. It's all cut the way you want it. It's all delivered to you" says Robbie.

And in every city wholesale butchers are sourcing top quality meat to sell to the public at a fraction of supermarket prices.

Places like Pendle Ham and Bacon in the western outskirts of Sydney and the Big Butcher at Thomastown in Melbourne, you'll find a list of other meat wholesalers who sell to the public on our website.

"You never have to pay supermarket prices for meat again" says Andrew.

WEBSITE INFO FOR MEAT OUTLETS

Classic Meats

Unit 5-7, 2 Powell Street, Osborne Fark

08 9242 2623

http://www.classicmeats.com.au

Mondo Butchers Wholesale

Unit 5, 41 King Edward Rd, Osborne Park (behind Craft Decor)

08 9446 4778

www.mondo.net.au

Avon Valley Beef

35 Truganina Road, Malaga

08 9248 4440

www.avonvalleybeef.com.au