Purdue Extension and the Indiana Beef Council have developed a website – www.knowyourbeef.org – to help consumers store, select and cook meat safely.
"Know Your Beef" offers tips on how to prepare beef, including the importance of refrigerating meat at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit and how to measure internal temperature while meat is cooking.
"Although the U.S. meat industry is the safest in the world, it is still up to the consumer to properly handle and prepare meat to avoid illness," said Jolena Waddell, co-developer of the website and assistant professor in the Department of Animal Sciences. "'Know Your Beef' includes simple safety tips to help keep your family healthy while enjoying a great product."
"Know Your Beef" also has pages describing the differences between various cuts of beef and how they are made. Readers can view the differences between flatiron, ribeye, T-bone and porterhouse steak in pictures, read descriptions of each and watch videos of chefs explaining how to cook each cut of beef.
Many of the videos feature Waddell. "I heard the frustration of many processors in particular, when customers would ask for several quality cuts of meat to be ground," she said.
"Today's consumer knows steaks and burgers, but their experience with other cuts of beef is becoming limited. We want to increase the awareness and appreciation of beef so that the producers and consumers get the best experience for their money."
The website offers multiple search functions. Consumers can search by the name of a cut, such as T-bone, or by area of the animal, such as short loin.
While the site is designed to be helpful for consumers, Waddell said meat science students, butchers and scientists also can use the information it provides.
Check out one of the resources below, a video showing how a beef carcass is broken down into its component retail cuts.