Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Local Butcher

I'm very lucky as there are two butchers within 10 minutes drive of where I live. I buy our meat from these butchers. We are reducing the amount of meat we eat so I buy the best quality I can but in reduced amounts. The flavour is better and I really don't want to buy meat from animals that have been intensively farmed. Today I found out an interesting difference between the two local butchers. Both purchase grass fed, local beef but one buys whole sides of beef and butchers them on the premises, the other buys the beef already cut. The one who butchers their own beef is happy to give customers dog/soup bones for free, the other actually buys in bones and so charges for dog/soup bones.

Pork is another story. The pork comes from a piggery in another state. Two reasons I very rarely buy pork - intensively farmed and not local. There is a local free range, organic pig farm which makes the yummiest bacon but I can no longer purchase it locally. The place I used to buy it from no longer stocks it as it was getting too expensive in their opinion. It did cost more but you needed less as the flavour was wonderful.

Apparently, like so many trades, fully qualified butchers are becoming a rarity. The 'butchers' employed by supermarkets do little more than slice meat and package it.

I'll continue to shop locally but give preference to the butcher who purchases whole sides of beef. My dogs like their free dog bones.

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