Till 1870s animals were shipped live from America to Europe and then slaughtered when they arrived there.
Live animals took a lot of ship space and many in voyage, fell ill, lost weight or became unfit to eat.
Meat was hence an expensive luxury beyond the reach of the European poor.
Then came the new technology, namely refrigerated ships, which enabled the transport of perishable foods like meat over long distances.
Now animals were slaughtered for food at the starting point in America, Australia or New Zealand and then transported to Europe as frozen meat. This reduced shipping costs and lowered meat prices in Europe.