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    Four Ways To Find Your Happy (Meat) Place

    [fa icon="user"] Diana Alexander [fa icon="folder-open'] Fresh Food, Shopping, Organic, Food, USDA Organic, Meat & Veggies

    Happy Meat Twitter

     

    Happy Meat (adjective): Meat that comes from an animal that has been humanely raised in as close to its natural environment as possible without unnecessary antibiotics and hormones. Tasty and even more exciting when discovering a deal.

    As we become increasingly aware of the environmental and health issues that come with commercially raised meat, there comes a desire to purchase 'better' meat (or “Happy Meat” as casually defined above.)  If you choose to eat meat, we encourage you to find your Happy Meat source.  Although, if only a lucky few have a farmer down the road to ask the hard questions, how does one find sustainably raised meat at a reasonable price? 

    Here are our four favorite starting points on how to choose wiser to bring Happy Meat to your dinner plate:

    Let the Internet Play Matchmaker   

    You may just have a Happy Meat farmer around the corner. Finding him or her may be another issue. There are two websites that can help;

    eatwild.com and localharvest.org

    Honestly, we love them equally.  Each of them works the same way: pop in your zip code and the website will tell you where Happy Meat is available near you, whether it’s as part of a CSA share, or at a farm stand / farmers market.

     

    Ask The Universe 

    Your neighbor may have been sourcing Happy Meat locally for years and you just don’t know about it. (Those who do often keep this well-kept secret like one would protect the preferred babysitter's phone number.) Post on your favorite social media platform letting your network know what you're looking for. Seeing who replies may surprise you. A Savvy member found her meat CSA this way five years ago.  The rest is deliciously meaty history.  Another found interest from six families  which made it worth the farmer's time to deliver to the neighborhood quarterly.  There is power in numbers. Don't be afraid to ask!  

     

    Get a Special Delivery. Monthly.  

    A handful of companies are attempting to fill the void and connect local farms to local kitchens. These companies work very much in the way of a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture.)  Generally you receive a set amount of meat each month. Some business models start with a form to customize your preferences. Lots of ground beef? Sure! No lamb? Got it!

    Take a look at these two companies and how they put transparency at the forefront, asking the appropriate know your farmer questions for you and posting the answers on their website.

    Walden Local Meat Co. keeps it's operation as local as possible by serving New England as well as parts of New York and New Jersey with meat from farms as local to its customers as possible, and hand delivering shares.

    If you don’t live in Walden Local Meat Co.’s delivery area, Butcher Box is an option. Butcher Box will ship anywhere in the continental U.S. It may fall short of the “local” standard of Happy Meat, but Butcher Box has done all of the research for you to ensure that all of the other Happy Meat standards have been met by the farmer.

     

    Think Inside of the Big Box  Big Box stores and warehouse clubs are starting to answer consumer demands for Happy Meat. Many now have better options. It’s hard to know your farmer when picking up your meat in a giant store, so make sure you read labels carefully to glean as much information as possible as to how the animal was raised. Even better, see if there is contact information for the producer of the meat. Give them a call and ask your own questions! {Browse this post to explore to the differences between Certified Humane, GAP, USDA Organic options found in big box stores.} 

     

    Savvy Women's Alliance Chapters 

    Imagine walking into your library and being surrounded by ALL the local farmers, CSAs, and farmers markets in your area. You would be allowed to test and talk until you find your perfect match.  Sounds like the best in-person Farmer Tinder!  We have several chapters in Massachusetts working together to host an event much like this -a casual vendor-fair style evening!  As this event unfolds, we will place all the how-to's into our library of Gatherings for our Chapter Ambassadors.  

    Working with and supporting sister chapters is a unique aspect of the Savvy Women's Alliance and we are so proud of chapters collaborating!  

    Learn More About Savvy Chapters

     

    EXPLORE MORE

    If You Choose To Eat Meat, Eat Less 
    Four Ways To Eat Less Meat With A Family 
    Dead Zones: What We Need To Know and What We Can Do 
    Diana Alexander

    Written by Diana Alexander

    Diana is a mom of two boys, wife of a Scotsman, a lover of all things food and a passionate believer that you are what you eat (and what you eat eats,) but always makes an exception for Stove Top Stuffing and cupcakes. When she’s not watching her boys on the soccer field you can find her with her nose in a book or in the kitchen cooking up something yummy, but probably not low in calories.

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