Wagyu today is confusing. There are many choices, good or bad. Here is a piece of article written by Mr. Koji Itatsu, expatriate sent by Gifu Prefecture Government at that time living in NY City. “From 1997 through 1998 128 wagyu cows were imported to America, along with 13,000 wagyu sperms in test tubes, to begin a large scale of breeding of American Wagyu.” Today American Wagyu is branded as “Washugyu”. The quality – marbling and flavor – is good so it has been satisfying Wagyu craving market here in America. Wagyu was also introduced to Australia in 1991 and crossed with Angus, Murray Grey, Shorthorn and Holstein cattle. The quality of Australian wagyu is highly regarded today. No matter how the quality of American and Australian Wagyu improved, the Japanese Wagyu is still superior in flavor, texture and marbling quality. The problem of Japanese Wagyu is that the price is also superior and under today’s strong yen environment, it is not competitive for overseas sale. In Japan the truth is that very expensive, high quality Wagyu is out of reach for ordinary consumers.
I will blog next the Wagyu Ranking System. This decide how much you are going to pay for Wagyu!