The UF Meat Market is chopping prices on fresh flesh.
The market, located in the Animal Sciences building behind the UF veterinary school, is open on Fridays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
At the market, you’ll find a variety of cuts from locally raised beef and pork with the occasional chicken eggs or lamb.
In general, the meat is about $2 per pound cheaper than the grocery store, so pork chops that may cost $4.30 are sold at the UF market for $2.60.
Byron Davis, the manger of the market who has been working there since 1997, said that the animals are used in five or six different classes in the animal science program before they are butchered. The classes range from raising the animals to meat processing.
The animals are also used for two different meat-judging teams and one livestock-judging team in inter-collegiate competitions.
Davis said the market gets about 85 to 100 customers on an average Friday. Fifty to 60 percent of those customers are students.
Due to a no-competition clause because of its not-for-profit status at UF, the only way people hear about the market is by word-of-mouth.
UF meat is locally raised, butchered, produced and processed.
“I’d say it’s fresher,” Davis said. “The pork in the case today was walking around less than a week ago.”
The beef you buy at the UF meat market also has a unique flavor because they dry-age all cuts for a minimum of 10 days.
“Nobody dry-ages whole carcasses anymore. They might dry-age cuts, and even then it’s only going to be at your high-end, white-tablecloth restaurants,” Davis said. “There, a steak is going to cost you $50 to $60, and we do it here for nothing.”
As for how this meat-man eats his steaks: “Minimum seasoning, just salt and course ground pepper,” Davis said. “Hot charcoal grill, medium to medium rare. I want to taste the meat, not what I put on it.”