HE butchers may or may not be pleased to hear that attempts are in course of being made to bring into consumption, besides Australian; meat, also frozen joints, and steaks preserved in a liquid of which the nature has not as yet been disclosed. There is some doubt whether this latter food will go down with those inconsiderately called the poorer classes, who refuse the meat which comes from Australia. Referring to the parts and pieces of beef, mutton, and pork, fresh- killed, to which only they will vouchsafe to abase their appetites, the Times observes:—
“The prejudice to be overcome before the mass of our population will take to any description of meat beyond these, can be seen in the fact that Australian; tinned cooked meat, which is far more economical than the lowest-priced butcher's meat, besides being more nutritious, is not yet sold in the poorer neighbourhoods to the extent it is among the middle and higher classes.”
No doubt. The very paupers in the workhouses turn the nose of scorn up at Australian Meat, which they, whilst they were earning a truly good living, never tried. But what are called poor neighborhoods contain many, comparatively rich people, highly-paid artificers, inhabiting low-rented houses, being cheaply clad, and subject to next to no taxation but that of their gin. These prosperous people can, in fact, afford to eat butcher's meat much better than the great majority of the higher and middle classes, who pay all manner of taxes, have ostentation to support in respect of abode, attire, and other externals, and are fain to eat the cheapest meat they can at their own tables, seeing that none but the best the butcher sends is put up with in the kitchen. The contempt of the Striking Classes for Australian meat is one more gratifying proof of their progressional elevation, whereof the ascending scale is visibly measured by the rise of beef and of oysters. Don't mention Australian meat most to those who are accustomed to rump-steaks and oyster-sauce. Not a word to them, especially just now, about any fare-roast beef; and turkey, preliminary to plum-pudding and mince-pie, Australian meat to those who are accustomed to rump-steaks an description of animal food of lower .# than g old English fare — roast beef and turkey, preliminary to plum-pudding and mince-pie. Washing down all those good things with abundance of “fizz,” the sons of toil, and especially the jolly colliers, will generally, let us hope, thoroughly enjoy their Christmas.
“Christmas and Australian Beef-Eaters.” Punch, or the London charivari (27 December 1873): 261. HathiTrust online version of a copy n the University of California Library. Web. 15 March 2022.