We aimed to establish colorimetric thresholds based upon the capacity for instrumental measures to predict consumer satisfaction with beef colour. A web-based survey was used to distribute standardised photographs of beef M. longissimus lumborum with known colorimetrics (L*, a*, b*, hue, chroma, ratio of reflectance at 630 nm and 580 nm, and estimated deoxymyoglobin, oxymyoglobin and metmyoglobin concentrations) for scrutiny. Consumer demographics and perceived importance of colour to beef value were also evaluated. It was found that a* provided the most simple and robust prediction of beef colour acceptability. Beef colour was considered acceptable (with 95% acceptance) when a* values were equal to or above 14.5. Demographic effects on this threshold were negligible, but consumer nationality and gender did contribute to variation in the relative importance of colour to beef value. These results provide future beef colour studies with context to interpret objective colour measures in terms of consumer acceptance and market appeal.