Who We Are & Why Belted
Galloways Are Our Breed
Why We Chose Belties!
We choose to raise Belties because of all the positive attributes these animals bring to the farm and the table.
Belted Galloway cattle are known as an "Heirloom" or "Heritage" breed because they are one of the oldest known breeds on record. The Vikings likely brought them to Scotland where they adapted to the very harsh climate & environment, becoming sturdy & efficient grazing animals perfectly adapted to grass foraging. They are now considered to have one of the best grass to meat conversion ratios, consuming about 30% less than most other beef breeds. That's good for us as we have limited acreage.
Belties also tend to have gentle & calm dispositions. Most Belted Galloway breeders can walk right into the pasture & give their cattle a welcome scratch. This is a bit unusual in the beef business. Even the bulls tend to be low key. This gentle disposition makes the Beltie a good choice for small herd ranchers like us.
The cows are known for easy calving & have strong maternal instincts with longevity on their side, often calving into their late teens. They are one of the few cattle breeds that are naturally hornless! This is a very beneficial & money saving characteristic referred to as "polled". We love that we don't have to dehorn.
In addition, Beltie meat is really really tasty, tender, and lean. Yes... even lean grass pastured beef can be tender and delicious! The thick layer of back fat that modern cattle breeds put down for protection from the winter cold is not necessary on the Beltie due to its beautiful heavy double winter coat. That same coat that they developed in Scotland now protects them from our Wisconsin winters. Our cattle always have access to a shelter or barn, however; in the winter they usually only choose to use it on bitterly cold and windy days.
Did we forget to mention that they look amazing!? The Belted Galloway is gorgeous and excellent at drawing attention. Whether it's at the county fair, a major exhibition, or out in the pasture, people enjoy taking the time to stop to admire them and snap a picture.
Belties are smaller framed than many of the beef breeds and we like that. The smaller frame means they are easier to handle and also that when selling beef quarters, our customers don't have to over fill their freezer making their beef purchase more affordable. Because they are a bit smaller, they are not commonly used for large scale commercial production operations. There may be breeds that finish faster, but remember that as a "Heritage" breed, Belted Galloways are extremely adaptable and perfectly made for a diet of grass forage. The result is an extremely high quality meat which is naturally lower in fat, while still retaining its tenderness and flavor. Beltie meat gives people an option for a healthier meat source.
Mary's Organic Farm, E3346 Kessinich Rd., Plain, WI 53577, email@example.com (757)660-9291