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Pioneering Ethical Meat Butcher Jered Standing Dies at 44

On February 22, Standing, the 44-year-old owner of one L.A.’s most popular butcher shops, Standing’s Butchery, died, according to the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner.

1:52 PM PST on February 26, 2024

    Screenshot via Jered Standing Instagram

    Melrose butcher Jered Standing’s philosophy on selling meat went against the grain. 

    As fattier cuts of beef like Wagyu gained popularity over the years, Standing chose to source 100 percent grass-fed and grass-finished beef, generally a much leaner type of beef compared to the ultra marbled Wagyu breed that seems to be everywhere now. And all his pork and poultry were “raised on pasture” within the state of California.

    “Standing’s won’t work,” Standing wrote on Instagram, one year after he opened Standing’s Butchery on Melrose Avenue in 2017. “Nobody cares about that sustainable shit,” he recalled someone telling him. “Someone here in LA. And you know what. It bothered me. I’m really sensitive. Full of self-doubt. And I’ll admit it. I don’t always take criticism very well.”

    On February 22, Standing, the 44-year-old owner of one L.A.’s most popular butcher shops, Standing’s Butchery, died, according to the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner.

    Over the weekend, customers, journalists, and fellow butchers from as far as the UK expressed their condolences on social media.

    “Devastated to read of your loss,” Donald Butchers in Scotland wrote on Instagram. “The world has lost a truly inspirational man who flipped an industry on its head with his passion, drive and determination in his own beliefs of how things should be.”

    “My heart is completely broken,” KCRW’s Evan Kleinman wrote on IG. “May his memory be a blessing.

    Standing died by suicide at an undisclosed “residence,” according to the medical examiner’s website. The cause of death was listed as “hanging.”

    A former vegetarian turned butcher, Standing opened his first butcher shop on Melrose in 2017. In the following years he became known for highlighting lesser-known and underappreciated cuts of local meat and built a reputation for his transparency and strong values when it came to sustainability and picking what he stocked his case with.

    Standing was a “whole animal” butcher, meaning almost nothing went to waste. Trimmings and fat were used for burgers and sausages. And dog treats were made from organ meat.

    In 2021, Standing’s Butchery announced plans to expand to Venice. After a long delay, possibly due to the pandemic, Toddrickallen reported that Standing’s filed for an application with the Department of Alcohol Beverage Control, last year.

    L.A. TACO reached out to Standing’s Butchery on Instagram for a statement but did not hear back.

    If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis, consider seeking help through the Los Angeles County Department of Health.

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