Mitchell Bros. and other like minded ranchers are aimed at improving environmentally friendly and profitable usage of the 'fifth quarter’.
To put it simply the fifth quarter (QUNITO QUARTO in Italian ) is the remaining pieces of an animal carcass which are not being used for meat production. This included the organs, hide, intestines, feet, the head, horns, hooves, bones, fats and anything left once all the good meat is taken away. Many of these remnants of cattle processing hold great flavour, nutrition, strength, and possibilities! Our beautiful customers from all over the world recognize the value of these offals and make great use off them. We could learn something from them!
At Mitchell Bros., we are currently selling broth bones, liver, tongue, kidney, heart, and oxtail. Our favourite product however is tallow. Kira and I have experimented with soap, creams, and candles. Though not ready for sale quite yet, our first trials have produced fantastic results.
Tallow is closest to human sebum so is readily absorbed into our skin making it an excellent moisturizer for everyone from babies to people experiencing skin disorders.
What is Tallow?
Tallow is rendered Suet. Suet is the fat that surrounds the organs of a cow or deer, typically the kidneys. Once heated, suet will liquefy into gold colored oil that separates from the tissues originally intertwined throughout the suet (such as muscle and ligaments). At this liquid state, the fat is then strained through a filter to remove impurities. Once cooled, tallow becomes hard. Tallow is shelf-stable for up to 1 year and can last for many years if frozen immediately after rendering.
Tallow is used for cooking, skincare and industrial applications.
Grass fed tallow in particular is full of antioxidants, vitamins such as A, D and K, anti-microbial palmitoleic acid, and the anti-inflammatory essential fatty acid called CLA - Conjugated Linoleic Acid - which has been linked to cancer prevention, fat loss and improved brain function.
Benefits of Beef Tallow Applied to Skin:
Rich in anti-aging antioxidants
Rich in vitamins A, D, E and K that nourish the skin directly
Easily absorbable as beef tallow closely resembles the human
skin cell structure
Tightens and maintains integrity of skin cells
Promotes skin cell regeneration
TALLOW IS BIOLOGICALLY COMPATIBLE TO OUR SKIN'S SEBUM
Tallow is remarkably similar to our own skin's oil and has a history of use that spans the test of time.
Historically, tallow was a major ingredient in healing salves, bar soaps and creams for a variety of reasons. Many used tallow to prevent dry, cracked skin and to repair broken skin tissue and yet others just loved the way it made their skin look and feel.
Tallow provides key elements we need to maintain healthy, sturdy, cell integrity. Ever wonder why our elders appeared to have such soft, supple skin later in life?
Well, consider this. Our skin is biologically compatible with tallow in that they both contain 50-55% saturated fats (which are actually a good thing contrary to popular discussion) which help maintain skin cell integrity and tone.
In addition, both Tallow and Sebum (oil found naturally in our human skin) consist primarily of triglycerides which allow for easy absorption of nutrients.
There was a time when offal and skins had limited or no value and in fact were costing money to dispose of; those days are long gone. As the nose to tail revolution continues to gain momentum, less waste will occur and wonderful side products will emerge.
More than just meat comes from an animal. Offal amounts to about a fourth of the weight of the carcass. Hides, pelts and skins for leather and sheepskin rugs; pericardium, blood and tripe for pharmaceutical applications; and ox-tails, hearts, and kidneys for traditional dishes like steak and kidney pie, liver and oxtail stew.