As Windsor Meats specializes in local and med free products we have been carrying Frugie Beef for the last few months. Dwayne Lowdermilk is the owner of Frugie Beef based in Fort Langley. Frugie beef is raised on fruits and vegetables without use hormones, antibiotics or growth steroids. We interviewed Dwayne to provide you with some insight on his cattle.
Where does the name Frugie come from?
Frugie beef was chosen from a number of names we thought of relating to Fruit and Vegetables So FRU is for fruit and GIE (G) is for veggies. it was also to make simple for branding and trademark purposes. Along the lines of Kobe beef with no fat or marbling. Frugie beef is just meat.
How did you get started growing Frugie Beef?
It all started as a kid watching my father pick up trims and vegetables stores would throw away that customers wouldn’t buy (may have had a bruise spot or been on table for too long) At 52, after a life in many areas of hockey I wanted a new passion. Then one day in 2011 we looked through a book my mom had made for each of us 4 kids that was all about our lives growing up around animals. So through tears and joy we found our new passion back to my youth raising “Healthy Happy Cattle.”
What is the benefit of feeding the animals fruit and vegetables over grain or other feed?
There are a number of benefits not just to the animals but to environment and customers wanting healthy meat choices.
#1 is our beef has little to no fat so you get all meat and clients tell us they eat less as its all meat pieces. To add to this our beef are grain free so allergen suffers seem to be able to eat our beef as it is free from glutens also with each one of the cattle in our feeding system they average 70 to 100lbs per day of fruits and vegetables with grazing and hay supplements. This provides our beef daily natural sources of vitamins nutrients and minerals which in turn transforms into our meat which is high in Heme iron good for anemia and higher levels of CLA or conjugated linoleic acid
#2 How ECO friendly our company is. In 1.5 years we have removed 500 tons of food waste from land fills. Plus cardboard and plastics estimating in the 4 ton and higher levels all recycled.
What kinds of fruit and vegetables do you feed the animals?
Our feed process can only enhance the flavor of our meat. What’s fed into every animal per month adds up to a total weight of 2100 lbs or 941 Kg of fresh fruits and vegetables. Numerous types, varieties and kinds only described as one item IE. You can see the complete list at the end of this interview.*
Where is your farm located?
We again are very unique in that we have no personnel farmland we use other lands by providing a tax break purpose as well as maintenance and care of lands. So we have a number of locations in the Fraser Valley from Fort Langley to Aldergrove and South Langley.
Are your animals free run?
“Healthy Happy Cattle” Yes each farm is established to have grazing and feed areas for constant movement and ability to roam plus shelter. Each farm has a unique part in our system for our cattle. One farm has our younger cattle which are grazing and hay fed only with once a week fruit and vegetable feeding. Another is purely grazing and hay till moved to appropriate farm for development of age and care while being put into our full feeding system. We only raise cattle from our own calves or from farms we know produce grass fed only animals with No Hormone, No Anti-biotic or No Steroid use.
What is the size of your herd?
We try to maintain 21 cattle in our system and rotations so that we can at the least provide Stores and clients 3 cattle a month to a max of 7 if we needed to as we grow we have more land available to expand but not until we reach the market niche.
Are there any special cooking methods required for Frugie beef?
Yes we are finding numerous clients have found the best is to sear the meat all around then low heat till desired doneness. Also clients have said with all the taste and flavor juices in our meat is only in need of a salt and pepper sprinkling at best and plain is good to. Because our cattle get so much moisture from the fruits and vegetables our meat maintains lots of the moisture. To add to that example of moisture is our feeding system for final stages our cattle rarely drink water because they get so much out of the fruits and vegetables.