Speaking after winning the World’s Best Steak producer accolade last week, JN Meat International export manager Steffen Nagel said there was no doubt that it expected export rates to rise in Finland.
JN Meat International dominated the competition, being crowned the overall winner for its Ayrshire Sirloin Steak, which was raised in Finland, as well as taking home the Best Grass-Fed, the Best Rib-Eye and Best Sirloin steak awards.
“Last year, we were lucky enough to win Gold, Silver and Bronze medals at the World Steak Challenge; that meant a big jump for us in our export sales. This year, we will not hide that we have won the Overall Winner’s medal,” said Nagel.
Nagel added that, following the company’s success, he expected Finland to be put on the map as a beef-producing nation, which has been often scrutinised by producers from other countries.
“Everybody laughed at us and thought: ‘Finland and beef?’ The taste in this beef is very peculiar in a positive sense. There’s a theory that comes from Finland, when the cattle is [being fed on grass] in summertime, the quality of the grass and the water in the ground gives it a certain taste, which therefore enhances the flavour of the meat,” Nagel explained.
“We have had a big success in north Italy (especially Rome) and Spain with Finnish beef. It’s very scarce – there’s not much volume and a limited quantity from Finland – but the limited quantity that is available is very high quality.
“When we started this theory, everybody laughed at us and thought Finland was not a beef nation. But, I promise you, things have turned around.”