When discussing LFTB, it helps to have a general understanding of the slaughter process as a whole. Slaughter operations may be conceptually regarded as disassembly lines. As cattle move through the production area, they are cut into products like steaks, roasts, and trimmings. Unbeknownst to many consumers, however, the sustainability of cattle production in the United States is dependent upon the harvest of the animal in its entirety. In addition to beef products, cattle are used for an assortment of products, including soap, animal feed, pet food, fuel, candy, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals.
As muscle cuts, like steaks, move down the production line, they are trimmed of extraneous fat. This process gives steaks the lean appearance consumers are accustomed to. Attached to those trimmings are small bits of muscle (or lean) tissue that for a long time were not economically feasible to separate from the fat. The manual process is comparable to extracting the lean bits from bacon strips by hand, leaving the fat behind. In the beef industry, those lean bits, when all is said and done, are the equivalent of 1.5 million cattle each year.
Eldon Roth and BPI developed a system that could separate the lean from the fat simply and effectively. This stroke of genius revolutionized the beef industry as we know it. To be clear, LFTB is beef—nothing more, nothing less.