I’m so excited to be able to offer meat shares as part of the farm for 2014. I hope that you, my customer, are just as excited as I am. I’ve had a couple of questions as to the how and why and wanted to just provide a little more details on the upcoming ‘meat shares.’
The first share I’m rolling out for 2014 are chickens. As a small farm in California, I am allowed to process up to a certain number of birds on the farm each year. I have been raising my own meat birds for about 3 years now. I think the taste of fresh, pastured raised poultry, far exceeds the taste of store-bought chicken. I often get asked, ‘how can you eat something you’ve raised?’ and my response to that is how can you eat that slimy, processed, cruelly raised piece of meat wrapped in cellophane? To me, that’s worse than knowing your food before you consume it. That’s most of the reason I now am offering meat shares– many of my customers have expressed interest in other products and I’m happy to oblige.
So, how is it going to work? Right now, I’m raising a batch of meat birds and keeping careful track of ‘inputs’ including feed, water, time, energy etc. at the end of the growing period, I’ll take the total number of pounds of chicken and divide it by the total cost. For example, if it costs me $700 to purchase, raise and process 25 chickens at 5 pounds each, the total cost per pound will be $5.60.
When I release the option to purchase meat shares, each customer will be told what the estimated cost per pound will be and a deposit will be requested. Probably around 25% of the total.
The minimum purchase will be 5 chickens, spread out over a 10 week period (1 chicken every other week). There is no max per customer, but I’m only able to offer 100 chickens per 10 week season, so I’m asking customers to get their orders in ASAP.
This expansion of what I can offer from the farm is just the first step towards establishing an avenue for people to truly eat local. I have future hope of being able to offer other meats in addition to the fresh vegetables, herbs, pasture raised chicken, milk shares, eggs and honey that will be available in 2014.