"Kagoshima Kuroushi" is beef from the Japanese Black breed of cattle that spend the longest part of their feeding period in Kagoshima Prefecture and that are finished in Kagoshima Prefecture.
In addition to its finely textured and tender flesh, the characteristics of the beef are the delicate yet firm umami flavor of both the meat and the fat, and the melt-in-your-mouth texture of the marbling or webs of fat that have a low melting temperature due to the large amount of unsaturated fatty acids woven through them with good balance.
At Japan's 11th National Competitive Exhibition of Wagyu (1) held in September 2017, "Kagoshima Kuroushi" won the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Prizes in four of the nine categories in which they were entered (three stud-bull categories and one beef-cattle category). In the beef-cattle category, its beef was awarded the Best Dressed-Carcass Prize.
The breed of cattle that can be designated as "Kagoshima Kuroushi" is Japanese Black (heifers and steers).
A further condition for being designated "Kagoshima Kuroushi" is that the cattle must spend the longest part of their feeding period in Kagoshima Prefecture and also be finished in Kagoshima Prefecture.
In Kagoshima Prefecture, cattle were originally raised as draft animals. When agricultural machinery such as tractors became widely adopted during the 1950s, a change was made from rearing draft cattle to rearing beef cattle.
In Kagoshima Prefecture, stud bulls were managed by people working in both prefectural agencies and private enterprises, and steps were taken to develop excellent stud bulls suitable for high meat production and to increase the number of excellent cows.
In 1985, the Prefectural Stud Bull Association was established to consider measures that could be implemented to improve the quality of the prefecture's beef cattle and to establish "Kagoshima Kuroushi" as a brand, in collaboration with the Prefecture.
1995 saw the establishment of the "Kagoshima Prefecture Beef Cattle Promotion Association" (hereafter, the Promotion Association), comprising all the agencies and groups in the prefecture concerned with the beef cattle industry.
In 1997, the Promotion Association produced a manual for cattle breeders in the prefecture. As well, it promoted techniques for producing the calves desired by cattle fatteners. In 1998, it went on to produce reference documents for cattle fatteners about the basic feed management, growth physiology, vitamin control, disease and feed ingredients. As these techniques and materials were popularized and then became established, improvements were seen in the quality of "Kagoshima Kuroushi".
The number of Japanese Black-breed cattle fed in Kagoshima Prefecture has ranked number one in the country, not just for the number of breeding cow, but also for fattening cattle from 1995 when the Promotion Association was established until the present (2017, when "Kagoshima Kuroushi" has been registered as the Geographical Indication [GI]).
Previously "Kagoshima Beef" and various other terms have been used to name beef produced in Kagoshima Prefecture, but now the brand has been unified under the name, "Kagoshima Kuroushi".
Japan's National Competitive Exhibition of Wagyu: A competitive exhi