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About Kobe Beef

Kobe beef

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Kobe beef (神戸ビーフ Kōbe Bīfu?) refers to beef from the black Tajima-ushi breed of Wagyu cattle, raised according to strict tradition in Hyōgo Prefecture, Japan. Kobe beef is renowned for its flavour, tenderness, and fatty well-marbled texture. Kobe beef can be prepared as steak, sukiyaki, shabu shabu, sashimi, teppanyaki and more.

Kobe beef is also called "Kobe-niku" (神戸肉, lit. Kobe meat), "Kobe-gyū" (神戸牛, lit Kobe cow) or "Kobe-ushi" (神戸牛, lit Kobe cow) in Japanese.


The Wagyu cattle that produce the highly prized meat were introduced into Japan in the second century as work animals, used in rice cultivation. The mountainous topography of the islands of Japan resulted in small regions of isolated breeding, yielding herds that developed and maintained qualities in their meat that differ significantly from all other breeds of cattle. Resulting herd isolation and the distinctive feeding techniques put in place because of the limited land availability have lead to distinguishing features that make the meat both superior in marbling and in the ratios of unsaturated versus saturated fats.

Original Kobe beef

Kobe beef in Japan is registered trademark by Kobe beef distribution promotion conference. It must fulfill all the conditions as follows:

  • Tajima cattle born in Hyōgo Prefecture
  • Fed by farm in Hyōgo Prefecture
  • Bullock or Virgin cow, meant to purify the beef
  • Processed at slaughterhouse in Kobe, Nishinomiya, Sanda, Kakogawa and Himeji in Hyōgo Prefecture.
  • Marbling ratio called BMS is level 6 and above.
  • Meat Quality Score is A or B
  • Gross weight of beef is 470 kg or below.

In accordance with popular belief, the cattle are fed a beer a day, and they are massaged with sake daily and brushed for setting fur, and fed on grain fodder. When the cattle are ready for slaughter, they are slaughtered in a humane and painless customary way in order to keep the meat tender and at its highest flavor. A Kobe beef distribution promotion conference plans to make a pamphlet in foreign languages detailing Kobe beef due to the ambiguation of what actually constitutes Kobe beef, and the fact many tourists who visit Japan receive incorrect information.

Video Tutorial - How-To BBQ Kobe Beef


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