The "use by" date is different in the UK to the US I think. In the UK the "best before" is the advisory date however "use by" means "use by". Regardless as to whether it is a recommendation or a hard date, it is there for a reason and if you are serving it to anyone other than just yourself, then you should take notice of it.
From a safety perspective, freezing a product effectively pauses the use by date. Once you thaw it out you you have the number of days to use it that were remaining at the point of freezing. It is always important to label food carefully as it goes into the freezer. Providing you froze it before the use by date then you should not have a problem defrosting it and using it immediately.
From a taste/quality perspective, as has been mentioned before, if it has been vac packed then the quality should be fine. If it is in loose packaging then it is likely to have got "frost burn" - dehydration of the outer layers of the meat and the formation of ice crystals.
Personally I don't like to keep meat in the freezer (-22 C ,-8 F) for longer than 6 months however I know that others do. Unless you have had a sudden large glut of meat at one point, keeping it for more than 6 months suggests lack of food rotation in the freezer..
Edited by Wade1 - 8/17/14 at 2:29am