Welcome to the 66th Matsusaka Beef Cattle Competition

The Day of Reckoning: Finding Japan's Top Matsusaka Cow

Japan has several well-known beef cattle “brands”, at the pinnacle of which stand the cattle raised in Matsusaka. Of these, Japanese Black heifers sourced from the Tajima and Awaji regions of Hyogo Prefecture and fattened for 900 days or more are in a class of their own, and are known as “premium Matsusaka beef cattle”. Every November the Matsusaka Beef Cattle Competition (Matsusaka Nikugyu Kyoshinkai) is held. In 2015 a total of 50 of these majestic animals took part in the event, and following two hours of painstaking judging, the 686-kg Momomiya, a 1,007-day resident of a Matsusaka feedlot farm, was crowned the 66th queen of the Matsusaka cows.

Text: JQR editorial department Photos: Satoru Naito

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Under the crowd’s watchful eyes, cattle move from standby tent to judging area as their numbers are called, each one a magnificent beast raised with the utmost care by a beef-fattening farmer.

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