Natura-Beef is the trademark for Swiss beef from suckler cow herds.
Natura-Beef is geared to the natural rhythm of the suckler cow herd like no other label: the suckler cow rears her calf in the herd. She suckles it and tends to it. At around ten months, the calf is grown and already rather independent. As it drinks less milk, it eats a lot of grass or hay. Once it reaches this age, the calf is slaughtered and its meat is sold as Natura-Beef. In the meantime, the cow has become pregnant again, as the herd is accompanied by a bull – the father of the calves. Now the cow has about two months’ time to rest before giving birth to the next calf.
Suckler cows and their calves need to be in the pasture from spring to autumn. In the winter, they can roam outside daily in the exercise area. They are kept in the herd and must be able to move freely. On Natura-Beef farms, no cattle are kept tethered.
Natura-Beef is “meat out of grass”. Part of the farms feed cattle solely with grass, hay and grass silage, while another part supplements fodder with a bit of maize silage or grain. Feeding with soybeans, palm fat, growth-enhancing additives or animal protein or fats as well as genetically modified fodder is prohibited. For Natura-Beef, participation in the government programme “Grassland-based milk and meat production” is compulsory.
The good husbandry conditions are beneficial for animal health. On Natura-Beef farms, suckler cows are nine years old on average, with a rising trend. According to a 2017 study, the vast majority of suckler cows and calves are never treated with antibiotics throughout their entire life.
Suckler cows, calves and bull live together in the suckler cow herd. (Photos: Mutterkuh Schweiz)
There is also Natura-Beef-Bio, which must meet requirements for Natura-Beef production and Bio-Knospe “Bio Bud”) certification.
The independent, accredited inspection agency “beef control” and the STS inspection service of the Swiss Animal Protection Association use unannounced checks to verify whether farms comply with the strict requirements. Every animal is entered in the BeefNet database, thereby ensuring continuous traceability.
Only meat breeds and crosses with meat breeds are authorised for Natura-Beef. The strict production standards and selected genetics ensure outstanding product quality. Natura-Beef is tender, easy-to-prepare beef. The butchers with whom we work call it beef with guaranteed success and taste.
The label Natura-Beef is a private brand and belongs to the Swiss Suckling Cow Association
Here is a list of direct marketers, sorted by postcode:
The following butcher shops are licensed to sell Natura-Beef: