Marbled beef created by rice plants ”Sendai Beef Producer  Shu Otomo”

Marbled beef created by rice plants
”Sendai Beef Producer Shu Otomo”

”Sendai beef”, representative of Sendai

Sendai is famous for beef tongue dishes. They are delicious, living up to the popularity. We also definitely recommend ”Sendai beef”. It has an excellently balanced flavor with just the right amount of fat, and it is really delicious.
It is not called ”Sendai beef” just because it is raised in Sendai or in Miyagi. It can only be called Sendai beef if ranking A5 or B5, the top meat quality grades. Anything ranked below that is called ”Sendai black wagyu”. According to Shu Otomo, the Sendai beef farmer, of all black ”wagyu” produced in Miyagi Prefecture, only 30 percent is qualified as ”Sendai beef”. Only the meat which passed the strict examination are shipped as ”Sendai beef”.

Miyagi’s specialty ”rice straw” is the key

When no machines or tractors were used for farming, working cattle were used for rice plant farming in Miyagi. Miyagi was and still is a major rice growing district, so there was a great demand for working cattle. Now the cattle are kept as beef cattle, and that has a lot to do with rice plant farming. 
Growing rice plants means there is a good supply of ”rice straws” after the rice is harvested. Miyagi ships rice straws all over Japan to be used for feed and straw weaving. These straws are the key to the marbling in the Sendai beef Otomo produces. He said he cannot get good marbling when using ordinary hay. The secret of delicious beef lies here.

The desire to continue because people say it’s delicious

At the time of the interview, a cow was about to be shipped. When Nakata saw the cow, he commented, ”It’s smaller than I imagined.”
”That’s right. We grow mainly female cattle. I think cow meat is more tender and tasty.” said Otomo.
The cattle are shipped live, so the farmers rarely get to eat the cattle they have grown. It’s only when he talks to the customers that he finds out how the meat tasted. The feedback and opinions he gets stimulates his desire to strive for more.
”Cattle farming is not a lucrative business. And it’s very hard work. So, it’s difficult for someone new to come in to the business. I want to persevere. It’s a great pleasure for me to hear someone say it was delicious. That’s all I need to keep me going.”


Sendai beef producer Shu Otomo
Osaki-shi, Miyagi