It’s always nice to treat yourself to a special meal at your travel destination. In Takamatsu, one of the highlights for foodies is fine dining with Olive-fed Wagyu Beef. Olives are a local specialty of Kagawa, and after olive oil is pressed, the cattle are raised on the olive pulp that is left over. Let’s take a look at the premium olive-fed beef that won the Honor Award at the National Wagyu Fair.

Mr. Ishii has been involved in raising Wagyu/Sanuki cattle for 50 years. He was confident about the quality of the meat, but the market price was not as good as that of “brand-name” cattle such as Kobe Beef. With the number of livestock farmers decreasing, Mr. Ishii decided that he had to create a “brand-name” cattle unique to Kagawa Prefecture. Around the same time, the value of oleic acid was added to the evaluation standard at the National Wagyu Beef Fair, which is held every five years. Oleic acid improves the tenderness and umami flavor of meat and is abundant in olives, a specialty of Kagawa Prefecture. After the olives are pressed for olive oil, the fruit still has a lot of nutrients left in it. Mr. Ishii came up with the idea of feeding the Sanuki cattle feed mixed with olive pulp after pressing oil.



小豆島へ。Olive Line








Olive beef | LOVE Sanuki-san

Olive beef, a new brand of Sanuki beef

Sanuki beef boasting one of the highest quality in Japan, with only Kagawa taste. “Olive beef” was born from such thoughts. Olives from Shodoshima, Kagawa Prefecture, which has a history of more than 100 years, and Sanuki beef, bred for a long time in the warm climate of Setouchi. Premium Kuroge Wagyu beef only in Kagawa Prefecture, where two histories and brands are fused. It is a Sanuki beef that has been raised after olives are harvested. The characteristics of olive cows are rich, refreshing, soft and healthy. Kagawa’s taste is gentle on women and children.

The secret of deliciousness

The secret of the taste of olive beef is oleic acid and antioxidants, which are abundant in olives. Oleic acid enhances umami, antioxidant ingredients make it healthy and thorough commitment to quality creates more softness. The characteristics of olive beef can be maximized by using it not only for regular meat dishes but also for roast beef and salads.

Until the birth of olive cows

Before the birth of the olive cow, there were many high walls, and the producers were struggling. One of the major challenges at the conceptual stage was how to give the fruit after olive oiling. At first, I tried to give the fruit after olive oil squeezing as it was, but I did not eat the cow and evaded everything with my tongue. After that, through trial and error, I thought that the olive astringency might be the cause. Taking a hint from dried persimmons and making a sun-dried one on a trial basis, we found that the olive sugar produced a caramel-like scent, which cattle liked to eat, and that they could be used as cattle feed. Discovery. In this way, even with a single feed, various difficulties and ingenuity overlapped, and a high-quality olive cow was born.

The Seto Inland Sea and Shodoshima Island, catching the attention of people around the world.
The history of “Olive-fed Wagyu Beef” started here

Olive-fed Wagyu Beef (OFW) was first introduced to the Japanese market
in 2011 and quickly earned a well-deserved reputation for excellence.
Most notably OFW took home a special prize for fat quality at the 2017 Wagyu Olympics.
OFW was featured on Eater’s The Meat Show with meat expert ※Nick Solares.
Solares noted that, “While finishing cattle with olive lees is unique to Kagawa,
the success of the process means that you shouldn’t be surprised to see it widely adopted in the future.”

Olive-fed Wagyu Beef

Over 1000 Years of Cattle Raising
The bucolic island of Shodoshima in the tranquil Seto Inland Sea East of Osaka has been home to raising cattle for over 1300 years. Raising Wagyu cattle for meat production began in 1882. In the early 20th century, Shodoshima welcomed a second industry to its shores and now produces 99% of Japan’s olives and award-winning olive oil. Although it may seem that beef and olives have little in common, a local cattle rancher named Masaki Ishii felt differently.

Happy, Healthy Cows
After years of observing the leftovers resulting from olive oil production going to waste, Ishii hit on the idea of feeding this nutritionally rich material to his herd. Initially, the animals wanted no part of the bitter substance but after many trials and errors, Ishii hit upon a complex, time-consuming process of drying and roasting the pressed olives. This caramelized the natural sugars resulting in a sweetness the finicky bovines were happy to eat. The effort that goes into this process fits perfectly with the Japanese ethos of mottainai , to waste nothing.

It soon became evident that the cattle fed this mixture were producing superior beef. Not only was the meat rich, buttery, and supremely marbled, the high oleic content makes both the animals and the resulting beef very healthy.

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