Everyone in the beef industry is familiar with Wagyu beef because it is both incredibly delicious and expensive. You can expect to pay $250 per pound, yes, only per pound, on average for genuine Japanese Wagyu. But what if you have American Wagyu on your hands? It’s less expensive, but it’s still expensive because it’s still one of the best beefs available right now.
Aside from the steak’s actual cost, where you purchased it will also affect how much it costs because the restaurant or store will add fees on top of the steak’s cost.
How much does Kobe beef cost per pound?
The estimated cost can start at $90 per pound and increase from there depending on where and what kind you buy. A genuine Japanese Kobe will almost always cost twice as much as an American Kobe.
Even if it coined the phrase, not all beef is created equal.
In Japan, it’s not too uncommon to see beef as high as $300 per pound, but if you were to find it at a local grocery store with a lower grade score on a mass scale, as we explain later on in this guide, then it could be as little as $30 to $40 per pound. At this rate, again, it will be mass produced and will come from cattle inside the United States, not Japan. For instance, a four pack of six-ounce Kobe Beef filets retails for $208 at Sam’s Club.
For instance, American Wagyu beef with a score of eight to nine or higher is frequently sold for between $100 and $150 per pound.
Costco, for example, at the time of this writing, offered three Wagyu options at its local locations. An 11-pound Japanese Wagyu New York Strip Loin Roast, for example, retailed for $1,099 or $100 per pound, while a 13-pound Japanese Wagyu Boneless Ribeye Roast retails for a bit less at $92 per pound.
This CNN Money article, for instance, claimed Kobe beef as one of the world’s priciest foods, with prices starting at $150. In this same article, one butcher was interviewed and he claimed the costs at his butcher shop can start at $110 for a Japanese variety and half of that if it were for the American Kobe.
If you were to purchase it at a local steakhouse, keep in mind that it can only be available at select restaurants in the country. If you were to find it, however, most dishes, at least from what we researched, were about $375 per plate. The Japan Guide Book says it’s not too uncommon to see a plate retailing for $500 at some dining places.
Four types of cattle can produce wagyu beef: Japanese Brown, Japanese Black, Japanese Shorthorn, or Japanese Poll Wagyu cattle will consume sake or beer in addition to their normal diet, which when combined with the cow’s genetic makeup results in beef that is known to be buttery, tender, and beautifully marbled. Kobe beef has a higher concentration of monounsaturated fats and more omega-3 fatty acids.
With the beef you’re used to buying the grocery store, you’re probably familiar with the phrases USDA Prime, Choice and Select — the top three qualities the USDA uses to grade the quality of the beef. The USDA grading is based on the density of the marbling between the 12th and the 13th beef rib; however, the Wagyu’s beef will be determined by a 12-point marbling scale. Using certain marbling scores, the USDA prime, if Wagyu beef were to receive this rating, would have a score in the five to six range, according to Lobels.com. The most prized beef, and costliest, would rank as a 12, meaning the marbling would be so dense that the muscle to marbling could reach a nine to one ratio. In order to achieve this high ratio, wagy must have at least 25 percent marbled fat.
What are the extra costs?
If you were to buy from a butcher online, you might have to pay additional fees for expediting.
Tips to know:
This infographic on Fine Dining Lovers states that out of 1.3 billion cattle in the world, only 3,000 are certified as Kobe each year.
All Wagyu beef is Kobe beef, but not all Kobe beef is Wagyu. The cattle must be raised in Japan’s Hyogo Prefecture and the production must adhere to local standards for it to be referred to as Kobe. Japan’s beef production is comparable to France’s wine production. There are numerous regions where beef can be produced, and each one can produce a unique “kind” of beef.
Why Wagyu Beef Is So Expensive | So Expensive
How much does Kobe beef sell for?
A Kobe burger costs about $50, and a genuine cut of Kobe beef costs about $200. What is it about Kobe beef that makes it such a delicacy? For lovers of fine beef, its unmatched flavor, texture, and tenderness make it a special indulgence.
How much is 1 lb of wagyu steak?
Price per pound for wagyu can reach $200, while the rarest steak, the olive wagyu, costs between $120 and $300 per pound. The price of American Wagyu beef ranges from $10 to $15 per pound, depending on where you purchase it.
Why is Kobe beef so expensive?
The creamiest, most decadent, and most flavorful fat streaks a steak can have can be found in Kobe beef, which is thought to be the most heavily marbled beef in the world. Kobe beef is the most expensive beef in the world as a result of this as well as the strict regulations the region uses for its cattle.
How much does Kobe beef cost per oz?
Kobe generally costs $20 to $50 per ounce, depending on the restaurant or retailer. A 2-ounce cut of the delicacy from a reputable online retailer will probably cost you $100 (or a little more).