Certified Piedmontese Beef: On a Journey to Become a Household Name by Fueling America with the Healthiest Beef Choice
You’re driving down North 84th Street in Lincoln, you look over and see a beautiful new building complex with Certified Piedmontese displayed on the side, and you ask yourself, “What is Certified Piedmontese?” More than just a prestigious breed of cattle, Certified Piedmontese Beef represents years of passion and ingenuity that has resulted in a product unlike any other.
Before establishing the strong Nebraska roots it has today, the Piedmontese breed came over from Italy, landed in Canada, and then made its way through Montana and into the Midwest where it was purchased by Tom Peed in 2009, joining the growing empire of ventures that make up Sandhills Global. Tom Peed’s son Shane Peed is part-owner and general manager of Certified Piedmontese. On its own, Piedmontese beef has gained notoriety for its superior genetic makeup compared to conventional cattle, but the Peeds took the operation to the next level with their commitment to responsible handling and environmental stewardship. Shane continues to take the industry by storm with his entrepreneurial spirit, backed by a dedicated production team and—the real superstars—the ranchers.
According to Director of Business Development Billy Swain, the greatest challenge Certified Piedmontese has faced is simply educating people what Certified Piedmontese beef is and breaking the misconception that fat equals flavor.
What makes the Certified Piedmontese beef program unique and a step above the rest is the attention to detail that’s put into every aspect of the process, from birth to harvest. Certified Piedmontese cattle are raised with integrity on family ranches throughout Nebraska. They are never given antibiotics, steroids, or hormones. Progressive ranching protocols are in place to guarantee the beef meets their high standards of quality. Certified Piedmontese is the only beef producer that tests for inactive myostatin, which means the final product has more muscle and less fat, resulting in a healthier beef option without sacrificing flavor or tenderness. Additional measures include EID (Electronic Identification) tagging technology, database tracking initiatives, voluntary third-party audits, and DNA testing to confirm heritage (they are able to trace the sire/father of every single calf).
Over the years, people have become more aware of what they are putting in their bodies, so Certified Piedmontese’s source-verified, ranch-to-fork beef program puts consumers at ease. “Natural and organic” is no longer a trend, it’s a way of life.
A Look Inside the New, State-of-the-Art Headquarters
Building a major Certified Piedmontese campus was a long time coming. It was clear to see the need for one location to house all operations…and then some. In addition to a large cold-storage facility, grind house, and shipping warehouse, the new headquarters also has a separate building for its administrative offices that features a retail store and private dining/event space. The retail store will be open to the public seven days a week, showcasing Certified Piedmontese products that are available for purchase. Not only can people take home premium cuts, but also cheeses, vegetables, and other high-quality ingredients that can’t be found anywhere else in Lincoln. The upstairs restaurant is accessible by reservation and invitation only. The venue can fit 60-70 people, when operating at full capacity. Certified Piedmontese has a talented chef on staff who has ample experience working with area farmers and producers. He will have reign over a well-equipped kitchen that was designed with an open concept to give guests an intimate look at the culinary process. The menu will extend past Piedmontese beefs into a specialty tasting menu offering big-city dining options. Everything will be made in-house, including fresh pastas and vegetables grown in a substantial on-site garden.
A primary motivation behind the expansion was to be able to house inventory under a company-owned roof instead of relying on a third party. This allows Certified Piedmontese to provide the most reliable and efficient service to their customers. With such strict operating guidelines, proximity that cultivates more streamlined communication is key.
There are many benefits to being headquartered in Lincoln with operations that span across Nebraska. All of Certified Piedmontese’s land is irrigated with fresh water from the Ogallala Aquifer, and their ranchers and farmers are stewards of both the cattle and the region’s natural resources for supplemental feed. From a shipping standpoint, Lincoln is a perfect central location for delivering goods across the country. Plus, various local retailers and restaurants sell Certified Piedmontese beef, making their connection to the area even stronger.