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May 16, 2012 05:42 AM

Walmart steak,not that I would but has anyone tried? [Moved from General Chowhounding board]

I saw a Walmart commercial for the first time the other day advertising steak that they sell in the store? I'm not a Walmart shopper but has anyone tried steak from Walmart?

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  1. It's Select beef...I avoid it. ~~ Never tried it.

    15 Replies
    1. re: Uncle Bob

      According to the commercials now, they are carrying choice. Seems like a change from the past.

      Not sure if it is all their steaks or not, since I don't get my meat from Walmart .

      I know I would be quite put off if I hired a babysitter and took the time to go out for steaks to be fed Walmart steak, like they did in the commercial. The price of the meal is only a small part of the equation to me.

      1. re: PenskeFan

        News to me....Next time I'm in one...I'll look see...........

        1. re: PenskeFan

          if it doesn't say USDA CHOICE it's not really choice. It would just be walmarts "choice" product.

          1. re: Jbond1007

            Is that true? There are pretty stringent labeling requirements for meat, which I've looked at but haven't definitively been able to say one way or the other, but from what I was able to piece together it looks to me that if you use the word choice on a retail package of meat that isn't USDA choice grade you are out of compliance.

            If you have definitive evidence to the contrary, I'd appreciate knowing where to find it.

            1. re: johnb

              I think the new way is they don't have to put the grade on at all, but not that they can make up their own grades.

              1. re: johnb


                That url is insane and I hope it works, but the eventual quote is:

                "The grade symbol and wording are no longer copyrighted; however, according to the Truth in Labeling Law, it is illegal to mislead or misrepresent the shield or wording."

                I can't find the other place where I found this discussed, but essentially you can use words like prime, choice, etc, just not to claim that the USDA says so. "Larry's Certified Choice" would be ok but probably not inside the USDA shield.

                1. re: ennuisans

                  Someone posted this the other day from the Washington Post

                  1. re: coll

                    Yeah I don't know for sure but it seems that if you use the USDA shield or make mention of the product being USDA graded you then have to declare the actual grade itself.

                    1. re: Tom34

                      No they don't.They can't declare a fraudulent grade but can declare any marketing gimmick they desire short of fraud.
                      Some states may step in with regulations regarding the issue,similar to open declarations on fish.

                      1. re: lcool

                        There was an article attached to a Chow post 10/13/14 that indicated the Giant Supermarket chain got into trouble with the USDA for doing just that...... Labeling beef as "USDA Graded" and not listing the actual grade.

                        1. re: Tom34

                          Not quite the complete story regarding Giant Food.I live in the heart of their small territory.

                          They stepped on the federal line with USDA graded in instead of USDA inspected or grade with info(border line,maybe even grey if they fight or ignore it),and used a big,bold in your face sticker.In so doing they crossed over three lines in Maryland where some of the regulations are more stringent.(there are several transparency,labeling etc issues pending).

                          Maryland was able to dump this one on the Fed and did so quickly.According to my sister in law the labels were still on in Virginia this AM,with a "we're gonna soon" response,same in Delaware.I won't know in Maryland until later today.

                          I shop Giant ?twice a month for non perishable on sale only and target the meat and fish cases for questionable sanitation and other violations.I always find several and never leave without a documented violation purchase.

                          1. re: lcool

                            Yeah I don't know all the particulars with the Giant story, just what was in the article. Big difference between mandated USDA Inspected and voluntary USDA Graded and Giant's beef executives knew it. They also know that on average there is a good dollar or more spread between Select & choice when bidding on beef.

                        2. re: lcool

                          This is straight from the UDSA rules and regulations:

                          Maintaining Grade Identity and Certified Schedule Program (CSP) Identity:

                          "As long as an officially graded product is marketed using grade references, the grade identity of the product must be accurately maintained. Each link in the market infrastructure must take appropriate measures to ensure that grading terms used on labels are accurate, and that grade and other certified marketing claims can be substantiated using routine audit methods."

                          My interpretation of this along with what happened in the recent Giant beef labeling matter is that if you use a label claiming "USDA Graded" , the grade must be declared.

                          1. re: Tom34

                            That part is true, ie if it says anywhere on the label that the meat is USDA graded then it must state the grade that was assigned. Interestingly, this even precludes a downgrade -- for example, if a package contained prime beef, it would be a violation to label it as choice (presumably a theoretical point since I have no idea why anyone would ever do that). There is an exception for "prime rib" where it doesn't have to be prime grade, due to the common use of that term to identify that cut rather than say anything about the quality of the meat.

                            But I'm still not sure what happens if the label makes no mention of USDA or has the shield and so on. If I affix a label that contains no reference to USDA at all, and says the meat is johnb's choice wonderful juicy great beef, am I breaking the law or not? I know I won't get in trouble for the "wonderful, juicy......" part, but can I use the word "choice" if the contents are not actually choice grade, graded by USDA?

                            Another variation on the question would be the following: if the meat was USDA inspected but not graded, and is labeled "inspected," then what words about quality could I use on the label? I guess it ought to be noted that nearly all beef for sale is USDA inspected (only exception is if it never crossed a state line). However inspection and grade are of course different things, and I'm not clear whether to begin with meat has to mention it was inspected on the label.

                            1. re: johnb

                              I don't know for sure but I think if you make "no" reference to the USDA grading program you can call it what ever you like.

                              On another note I stopped in a Bottom Dollar the other day for a loaf of bread and saw individually cryovaced Select Grade steaks and the label said something like "up to 12% solution added". I knew they were doing this with chicken and pork but that was the first time I saw it with high value "cuts" of beef. Maybe I am just sheltered.

          2. I've used it as steak and it was okay flavour wise but not very tender. I will buy their steak and grind or cube and use for other things.


            1 Reply
            1. re: Davwud

              My local Walmart has select grade in the center of the beef case and choice grades of beef placed at the end of the case. Compared to other stores, I think Walmart is higher priced on the Choice beef. I wait for other supermarkets to put beef on sale.

            2. I've purchased some lovely flavorful tender steak cuts from Walmart. Also great lamb chops (both loin & rib), & country-style pork ribs. Perfectly tender wonderful meat at terrific prices. Don't diss it until you've tried it.

              1. I just think it's really cheesy that they opted to go for the old Folgers trick: "We replaced the coffee in a top restaurant with...".

                16 Replies
                1. re: pdxgastro

                  Have never seen the commercial. But as I said, have been buying their meat for many years now & have never been disappointed. If you don't shop at Walmart for your own ethical reasons, that's fine, but it doesn't have any bearing whatsoever as to the quality of their meat.

                    1. re: pdxgastro

                      Thanks! I did just catch part of it last night on tv. Granted, they're taking license along with everyone else who does those "switcharoo" commercials. But really, they're one of dozens of companies that have done that. And frankly, Walmart is one company I don't take issue with for doing it, since so many folks automatically equate "Walmart" with "low quality". As far as their meat offerings go - that just ain't true.

                      In fact, last night I made a lovely meal of homemade turkey meatballs using a package of Walmart's own brand of ground turkey - clearly marked "organic, fed a 100% vegetarian diet, no hormones or antibiotics, & certifed humanely raised. And it only cost $3.50. What more would someone really want? (Oh, & it was delicious - no extraneous fat, no sinew, etc., etc.)

                      And like I said before - their other meat products are equally excellent.

                      1. re: Bacardi1

                        Just so ya know, a vegetarian diet actually isn't good for birds. They're omnivores and need some animal protein for maximum health.

                        1. re: c oliver

                          Some birds are omnivores, some are carnivores and some are "vegetarian". I only know after rescuing a few different species and finding out the hard way. I was feeding a baby robin bread and whatnot, turns out it's meat only. No wonder he was pooping it all out, good thing I didn't kill him!

                          1. re: coll

                            Robins are known for eating earthworms. However, we have robins coming and eating the grape jelly we put out for the Baltimore orioles. Early last spring we had a foot of snow in April and there were a lot of robins around. I put out blueberries (from the freezer) and they ate them.

                            1. re: John E.

                              Good to know! Not that that I'm picking up any more baby birds off the ground ever again, that was hard work. We used to feed him filet mignon mostly, that seemed to do the trick. My husband would take him to work so he could be fed every two hours, as recommended to us.

                              But if he was starving, I could see him eating anything. That was some hungry little bird we had.

                              1. re: coll

                                We were always taught that the momma robin was probably nearby and would take care of her little one, if it's already feathered out that is. If a crow or some other bird raided the nest before the baby robins have feathers, then they need some help because the parents would have then abandoned the nest.

                                I once raised a pigeon from a baby with barely pin feathers to a pet as an adult, the pigeon that is. I was 14 and I really had fun with that bird. Of course, I felt a little guilty because I had shot the baby pigeon's mother. (There was a 'pigeon shoot' in town where wild pigeons are shot early on a Sunday morning to attempt to control the population. This wasn't one of those pigeon shoots where they are released purposely just to shoot.)

                                Anyway, I saw the nest on the roof of the building we were on, and rescued the little guy. I fed him corn and gave him water with an eye dropper. When he got big enough, I taught him to fly (I threw him up in the air and he flapped his wings. He softly fell to the grass a few times before he got the hang of it.

                                That bird hung around all summer. He stood on my dad's head and shoulders while he was working in the garden. My mother's friends would not go into our backyard because 'Bird' would land on anyone who walked back there. (What a clever dad thought I should name him Walter, but I had an uncle named Walter.)

                                In October, I began to think about building him a box to stay warm in during the winter. (I'm in Minnesota.) His perch was just outside my bedroom window under a patio roof.

                                I never got the chance to build that little pigeon house. The mailman ran over him and squished him flat.

                                1. re: John E.

                                  What the heck kind of an ending is that?! I want my emotional investment back.

                                  1. re: Rilke

                                    That's not fiction. I don't know if I have the imagination to come up with a story like that. My oldest brother found him and buried him before I got home.

                                    1. re: John E.

                                      I know. You are a good storyteller though.

                                  2. re: John E.

                                    Yeah unfortunately my robin didn't any feathers to speak of either. And he was just laying on the lawn, with the nest a hundred feet above, and lots of cats in the neighborhood. The mother did come by and looked at us and him, and hopefully was satisfied with the new arrangement. He did grow up and learned to fly on his own and all that jazz. Pretty amazing experience! And yeah, that sitting on strangers' heads was weird, the lady behind us cancelled all her plans one day because she thought God had sent her some kind of sign.

                                    Now the baby squirrel that my husband brought home from the beach, that little guy begged to come home with him. Ran right up his sleeve and snuggled in there the second day he saw him. Obviously his mama met a fate similar to your pigeons. He ate a MUCH more varied diet. What a little piggy.

                        2. re: pdxgastro

                          I would be kind of pissed if they came to my table and told me that, lol. Especially if I was paying like $50 for an $8 Walmart steak...

                          1. re: Atomic76

                            If he came to my table and said, "We replaced the steak with steak from Walmart," I would say, "Nice of you to buy me dinner," and walk out. If I'm paying for a restaurant meal, that is what I expect, not a Walmart bait and switch promotion. The only decent explanation is that the people were treated to a free meal. Otherwise, the restaurant would lose credibility.

                            1. re: RainyDayInOregon

                              I would expect that the people in the ads knew when they went there that they were taking part in some sort of test marketing, were getting a free meal, and signed releases agreeing to be filmed.
                              It was also probably done when the restaurant was closed for regular business.

                        3. I don't buy that type of good from the WalMarchy.
                          But the commercial caught my attention.

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: iL Divo

                            bought some great lamb from there last week. They are also now doing a hormone free kinder to chickens chicken whole and cut. have not tried their steaks.

                            1. re: smartie

                              All chicken raised in the US is hormone free. That crap is pure marketing.

                            2. re: iL Divo

                              I understand that "WalMarchy" is a pejorative term, but I don't know why. I'm not attempting to be a smart-alec like I usually am, I just don't get it. Is the some pop culture reference that I'm mssing?

                              1. re: John E.

                                A variation of "Wal-marche," a name designed to make the WalMart shopping experience sound more upscale than it really is. See "Tar-jay" for Target.