I think the terminology needs to be cleared up a bit. Prime
refers to the quality grade of the animal being butchered. If the half or quarter of the cow is graded Prime..or Choice...or Select.. or Commercial
, the price of the pieces (Cuts) of that large critter will be adjusted for whatever the packing house decides is the current price for that GRADE
refer to the names of the pieces of that grade of beef taken from the half or quarter of the butchered critter. Example- The Chuck (Chuck Roast or Chuck Steak, Ground Chuck and Stew Meat and other cuts including the Shoulder Clod) Technically these could be any of the Grade of beef, but usually this "Cut"
comes from a Choice or Select Grade when used in retail meat cutting.
The difficulty arises when the terms are intermixed and cause confusion...Like when a Standing Rib Roast is called "Prime Rib". It may be Prime Grade, but most Rib Roasts sold in retail groceries are not
Prime Grade beef. They more often are "Choice Grade."
Another term often mis-used is Rib-Eye when the cut labeled that way is a Rib Steak. The Rib-Eye Steak is just the center core of the Standing Rib Roast cut into steaks. It does not have the long tail, the rib-bone, or the fatty cap that you find on the Rib Steak. It is just the "Eye" of the Rib Steak. Accordingly, when cut correctly, the Rib-Eye can and should be priced higher than the regular Rib Steak, because the Rib Steak has a lot of lower quality fatty meat and bone. However the retailer these days has educated the public to think that the cheaper cut is really the 'top-of-the-line' cut. The same attention needs to be focused on KOBE
and KOBE-STYLE BEEF
Advice. Do your homework on the grades and cuts of meat before you spend a lot of money on something that is actually a "Mis-Label"