I’m going to explore the side effects of cheap biltong and the difference between supermarket vs artisan biltong. When I first arrived in the UK from Cape Town back in ‘99, no one I came across had really heard of biltong. Fast forward 20+ years and you can now pick it up from any supermarket across the country.
There is a clear difference between UK and authentic South African biltong, a lot of biltong made in the UK is either too bland, salty or sweet like beef jerky. That said there are some UK biltong producers that we love, like Smallys Biltong
Why is biltong so expensive?
The simple reason is that in the process of drying meat to make biltong you loose around half the weight of the meat. This means that from a 1kg beef join costing £12, you will get 500 grams of biltong at a base cost of around £24.
Naturally, you can get the cost of the meat down depending on your animal welfare ethics and your choice of prime or budget cuts of meat. Mass-produced biltong can be very unethical and unenjoyable.
Supermarket vs artisan biltong
The first thing I want to say is that not all supermarket biltong is cheap and bad quality and the purpose of this blog is not to name and shame. I just want to help highlight the difference between supermarket vs artisan biltong quality and price.
In most of the supermarket biltong I’ve tried, it has either tasted too bland, too salty or too dry and the back of the pack usually has a long list of nasty extra unnatural ingredients. The ironic thing is that that supermarket biltong is not cheap either, some are the same price as our lekker bru biltong.
Is cheap biltong worth it?
You can buy biltong for as little as £3.5/100g, but like anything you get what you pay for. If you want cheap biltong, why not try to make your own DIY biltong from our very own recipe? The side effects of cheap biltong is regretting you didn’t pay a little bit more for something 100 times better.
Something as special as biltong deserves to be enjoyed with all the best ingredients. That is why we only use organic devon red ruby beef and only natural gluten-free ingredients. The love and respect that goes into the care of our meat and biltong making process is directly transferred into an explosion of flavour with every mouthful.
In closing. When it come to supermarket vs artisan biltong, the one thing you can always count on is that the artisan approach is more about passion and quality over profit.