Four decades in the business, and Peter McInerney knows quality livestock when he sees it.
The Jamberoo butcher bought the champion steer at the Albion Park show, carved it up and won the champion carcass prize in mid January.
He entered two carcasses, and took out the runner’s up ribbon in the same category.
“There’s an art to it, you have to know what you’re looking at it,” Peter said.
“It’s a bit of a reward, to win at the show.”
Taking pride in his work, he is the only butcher in the Illawarra who still goes to the saleyards to hand-pick his meat.
“I sell good quality meat, and I select all my own meat, still buy my own cattle every week,” he said.
“Not many butchers know how to buy cattle.
“Everything gets cut fresh, sliced straight off the block when you come in.”
Mr McInerney is most renowned for his sausages – he has sold them across the country, and internationally in Hong Kong and Bangladesh.
Competition with Woolworths has killed many small town butcheries, and it is a challenge that confronts the Jamberoo Butchery every day.
“I do get quite a few locals who support me, but it would be good if a lot more people in the town supported the shops in town,” he said.
“I don’t just rely on people from Jamberoo to keep me in business, I get people from Shellharbour, Wollongong and even Sydney coming in here.”