Grass fed NZ beef a hit at music festival

Grass-fed New Zealand beef struck a chord with the crowds at one of Japan’s largest dance and music festivals, Super Yosakoi, held in Tokyo on the weekend of 25 and 26 August.

Beef + Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ Ltd) was at the festival for the second year in a row, as part of its programme of activities to boost a taste for grass-fed New Zealand beef among Japanese consumers.

Organisers estimate that around 800,000 visitors took part in this year’s festival. Over the course of the two days, nearly 700 kilograms of grass-fed beef was served off the B+LNZ stand, which equated to more than 4,000 servings. To enable people to appreciate its true flavour, the beef was cooked simply in oil and seasoned only with salt and pepper.

A wide range of foodstuffs was on offer, but there was little doubt New Zealand beef was the most popular with festival-goers. While sampling on the Saturday was steady throughout the day, on the Sunday, a queue formed as soon as the first plate of piping hot beef was served at 10am and did not ease until the grills were turned off at 5.30pm.

The overwhelming on-the-spot response from people eating the beef was how juicy, tender and tasty it was, says B+LNZ market manager for Japan John Hundleby, adding that many were trying grass-fed beef for the first time and were not certain what to expect.

“However, once they put the beef in their mouths and tasted it, their delighted expressions conveyed very clearly their reaction.”

Others remembered sampling the beef at the festival in 2011 and actively sought out the B+LNZ stand again this year so they could enjoy the beef’s taste one more time.

Commenting on Beef + Lamb New Zealand’s participation in the festival, Hundleby said: “As was the case in 2011, Super Yosakoi provided us with an opportunity to put delicious, healthy and nutritious New Zealand grass-fed beef directly in front of consumers not only from Tokyo but from surrounding cities and prefectures. The highly positive response was gratifying, as was their interest in finding out more about the beef. In particular, the healthiness, nutritional merits and safety of the grass-fed beef seemed to strike a chord.”

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