LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Meat cutters from around the region came to Little Rock to see who has the best cuts.

The Arkansas Skatium in Little Rock became the battleground for 15 Texas Roadhouse meat cutters during the Qualifier Meat Cutting Challenge (QMCC) on Wednesday.

During the qualifier, each participant was given 30-40 pounds of beef, consisting of one sirloin, one filet and one ribeye to cut. The meat cutters were judged on quality, yield and speed during the cut-off. The winner is the cutter who yielded the most steaks with highest quality cut in the least amount of time.

The QMCC is the regional qualifier for the semi-finals and finals of the National Meat Cutting Challenge held in March. The challenge was created in 2001 to recognize the daily efforts of Texas Roadhouse meat cutters. The winner of the finals will be crowned Meat Cutter of the Year and receive a grand prize of $25,000.

Each meat cutter is responsible for hand-cutting every steak served at their local Texas Roadhouse. In an average year, they cut about $1 million worth of meat and spend seven to eight hours a day cutting meat in a 35-degree walk-in cooler.

Texas Roadhouse Product Coach Garrett Bartlett spoke on the dedication and skill of the meat cutters. “It’s really an art,” said Bartlett. “We host this annual competition to celebrate our professional meat cutters. We love our people, and our meat-cutting program is one way we show appreciation and reward their hard work and dedication.”