‘How to find farm fresh meat locally” has been a topic I’ve come across A LOT lately. Honestly, it’s an important one too. How? Why? Where? Lots of questions and uncertainties these days.
When all the craziness happened in 2020 and with the possible food shortages coming, William and I wanted to make sure we had all of our bases covered. Not only did we want to switch to a healthier option, but also we wanted to not have to worry about shopping at a store and seeing empty shelves. We decided we wanted to get farm fresh meat local to us, BUT how would we get it? We didn’t really know of anyone we could just ask, so I did what I do best; research!
How to locate a meat source
Farmers markets are a great place to find most things: fresh produce, handmade items, farm fresh meat, etc. Even if there isn’t someone there selling meat, they more than likely know where you can get good quality, farm fresh meat from and what direction to point you in.
There comes another question, “How do I know where and when farmers markets are?” Besides word-of-mouth suggestions, there are plenty of websites to help you locate one close to you that I have found helpful:
National Farmers Market Directory
This source was probably the most valuable for me since I didn’t make it to any farmers markets this year. Finding these websites that show you the farm fresh meat closest to you really helps give you options, that way if you need to shop around for price options, you have more to choose from in your area. Well, hopefully at least.
Online Meat Businesses
“What if I can’t find any farm fresh meat local to me even after using those links?” I have probably the best solution, online meat businesses. Yes! You CAN order farm fresh meat online and have it shipped right to you. HALLELUJAH!
I found great quality (arguably my favorite) meat business and it’s not even local to me. There are plenty of farms out there who sell online, but I am only recommending one that I have personally used.
They are my go to for chicken, turkey and beef products. They ship weekly, so it’s very convenient to “grocery shop” with them. Plus, the family who owns the business are truly great people. I highly recommend them!
Why get meat locally
Getting farm fresh meat locally has so many benefits to you:
You know where it came from and the conditions of the animal
This was important to me because you hear all the time about how animals are being treated cruelly in big factories and they don’t necessarily eat the best things while living there. That just makes me sad. I want to source meat where the animals are taken care of and eat good quality food. “If they’re taken care of, we’re taken care of” type of thing. An animal is eating a grass fed diet and /or an organic feed with their diet is a healthy animal. Therefore, the animal is healthier for you to consume. If the animal is eating non nutritious foods, you are also consuming the same things. GROSS!
It tastes better because it’s healthier
In my experience, farm fresh meat tastes better because it’s fresher and the animal eats better food. We have done a side-by-side comparison of store bought and farm meat, and you can totally tell the difference. You can see a difference in the way the meat looks, the greasiness of the meat and ESPECIALLY taste it in the flavor of the meat. Having farm fresh meat after store bought makes it hard to go back when you run out.
More cost effective
Not everyone will agree with this one, but here’s my thought process on the matter. When you buy in bulk, you will have food on hand at all times. Therefore, you’ll be less likely to “not have anything to eat” and you’ll cook at home instead of eating out. I’m not saying I’m perfect at this, but I will say this has helped me drastically with not running to a drive thru somewhere. Plus, if you look at the price of local meat vs store meat, you can save there too depending on prices. Double win!
This one has been a major factor of loving local, farm fresh meat. For the last few months, we have been getting our meat from 2 places: the dairy farm we get our milk from and online. Not only is it more convenient to get, but it’s easier to thaw in a pinch! Seriously. I have forgotten about a million times.
Tip: Get a medium size bowl, fill it with cold water and throw the meat you need to thaw in. It’s thawed in about 2 hours.
*All the people who forgot to pull out their meat in time to cook dinner said, “Amen!”*
Supports Local Farmers
This one may be the most important one of them all. We have gotten to know the people who take care of the animals that our meat comes from and are so grateful for them. These amazing people don’t get near the credit they deserve. The hours, the stress, the sacrifices, etc. are unimaginable. Even if you get food from a grocery store, farmers are taking care of you. Thank them!
What are some ways you’ve found farm fresh meat locally to you? Comment down below!
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