How to Buy Meat in 2021
This bitterly cold weather makes it hard to believe we're only 32 days away from spring! Springtime brings so much excitement and activity on the farm. It's also when we start organizing our butchering for the season.
With so many newbies joining our community, there’s been lots of questions about our process for buying a quarter beef or half hog. The purpose of this email is to answer all of your questions and fill you in on what to expect.
**Please read this entire email as it contains very important information and there are a few changes from last year.**
Here’s a breakdown of what happens when you order:
-6 Simple Steps to Buying in Bulk-
1) Decide how much and what kind of meat you would like to purchase
Nature's Pantry offers 100% Grass-fed Beef, Pastured Pork & Pastured Chicken. In addition to fresh pasture, our chickens and pigs enjoy a special non-GMO and soy-free diet made right here on our farm.
2) Reserve your meat by placing a non-refundable deposit
Beef deposit: $400 --- Pork deposit: $150 --- Chicken deposit: $10/bird
We accept cash, check, Venmo, and credit card. This deposit gets applied to your final total cost.
Our payment plan was a hit last year and we're excited to be able to offer it again. You can secure your order with a smaller downpayment and then pay monthly until the total is received.
3) You pick your butcher + butcher date
As you know by now, Covid has made everyone's life a bit hectic. I normally do not have butcher dates set yet but I knew I had to plan ahead in order to be able to continue to serve our families. Not only can you pick your butcher this year, you can pick the date that your meat will be brought in.
These are the butchers I was able to get a butcher date with for 2021.
-Wester’s Locker (Westbrook) - endorsed by Nature’s Pantry
-George’s City Meats (Nicollet)
-Schmidts Meat Market (Nicollet)
-French Lake Meats (South Haven)
**In your order confirmation email there will be a link taking you to a survey to select your butcher and butcher date. These are on a first come first serve basis.**
4) You’ll get a “cheat sheet” emailed to you
The cheat sheet covers the questions the butcher will be asking you when you call in your cutting instructions. This gives you an opportunity to figure out things like how thick you’d like your steaks or decide if you want brats or breakfast sausage made.
5) We’ll email you with the hanging weight of the animal
This is the weight given to us by the butcher after all the inedible parts are removed (head, hooves, carcass etc). This is how we determine the final price for your meat. Your deposit is then subtracted from this total amount. At this time the remaining balance is due.
6) About 2 weeks after delivery of the animal, the butcher will call you when your meat is ready to be picked up
It will be frozen so you’ll need to make sure you bring coolers to get it home. You are also in charge of paying the butcher for their hard work cutting up and packaging your meat. For easy math, you can figure about $1/pound.
There's no argument...Buying in bulk is way more affordable than buying meat by the individual cut. However, I completely understand the big upfront cost of buying a year's supply of meat isn't feasible for some families. That’s why we are so happy to offer both options for you.
Our current selection of grass-fed beef & pastured pork can be found on our website.
A few more questions...
When will the meat be ready?
We only butcher during our grazing season so your meat has the best flavor and highest nutritional value. You can expect your meat to be ready sometime between late summer & early fall.
Do I need a freezer?
Yes, you’re going to need a place to keep your meat. Best investment you'll ever make!
Here’s some approximations on what each size can hold:
-4 cubic foot freezer can hold about 175# of meat
-8 cubic foot freezer can hold about 350# of meat
-16 cubic foot freezer can hold about 700# of meat
How long does the meat last?
Beef and chicken will last for a year in the freezer. I’ve read that pork only lasts 6 months in the freezer, but I beg to differ. I make sure I have enough pork in the freezer to last a year and I’ve never had an issue with the way it tastes after 6 months.
When will you start taking orders?
If you ordered from us last year, you will be receiving an email the first week in March allowing you to secure your order for the 2021 season. You will have 1 week to place your order before it is opened up to everyone else. **historically we are completely sold out by April so please plan accordingly**
Orders will be fulfilled on a first come first serve basis. We are not able to honor verbal requests to “hold” meat. A down-payment will be required to secure your order.
Can we come and see how you raise your animals?
Of course you can! We believe wholeheartedly in food transparency and believe everyone should have the right to see how their food is raised. With the purchase of meat you will also get 2 adult and 2 child tickets to attend a farm tour for free this summer (a $40 value). Watch your inbox for an email with tour dates.
You'll need to create an account on our website to order
If you haven't done so, you'll need to create an account to place your order. If you have selected "Home Delivery" as your location, you will not be able to order in bulk. Please change it to Farm Pick up for the meantime.
Take a peak at our survey results from 2020 when asked how they would rate their satisfaction with the meat they received...
Let Nature’s Pantry take the stress out of worrying about finding food you can trust and know you'll love. We promise to raise the highest quality products for your family so you can feel good about the food you’re feeding them. Stay warm!
We’ve covered a lot of information. Thanks for sticking with me! If you're not on the list but would like to be, you can sign up here to get added.