fresh coast meats

[Update: There is a new order deadline of October 6 so you’ve got a little more time!]

You’ve heard a lot about my friend Jenn on both this blog and on my photography blog. She’s pretty awesome. Jenn’s been organizing happy organic meat pools for her friends for several years, and these meat pools have become so big that she’s decided to take a big risk. She’s started a small, happy organic meat distributorship called Fresh Coast Meats!

Do you live in Vancouver? Do you prefer your beef, pork and goat happy and organic? Then read on friends… I’ve got a treat for you!

If you are interested in purchasing a share, or if you’ve got a few more questions you can contact Jenn directly either at freshcoastmeats (at) gmail (dot) com, or through Fresh Coast Meat’s facebook page. Orders are due by September 30th October 6 (that’s the day after my 30th birthday for all ya’ll following along on my 30-before-30 journey)!


What do you get with your share?

  • Happy, locally-raised BC meat in bulk, raised using organic practices
  • Considerable savings off comparable store-bought meat (approx. $40 to $200 of savings)
  • Convenient weekend pick-up dates and times over the course of 1 month from the butcher shop at our friends at Save On Meats in downtown Vancouver (a great place to buy more meat if you run out before the next meatpool!)
  • An assortment of cuts from all parts of the animal – from high-end steaks to Sunday roasts to bones for making homestyle soup, you’ll get it all.
  • Convenient container to carry your meat home (please recycle and return if possible for next year’s share)
  • The opportunity to buy happy meat in bulk, but in reasonably sized portions suitable for city folk without deep freezers and without any of the stress of organizing your own meatpool

What will this cost me and is it really cheaper than if I bought meat at the store?

  • Beef = $350/share = 1 share = 35 lbs
    • price/lb = $10/lb
    • Store-bought happy organic beef is between $9/lb and $44/lb, depending on the cut. A typical meatpool beef share would cost you about $640 at the store for similar cuts.
  • Pork = $150/share = 1 share = 25 lbs
    • price/lb = $6/lb
    • Store-bought “happy” pork (of which there is very little commercially available) is between $4/lb and $12/lb depending on the cut. A typical meatpool share of pork would cost you about $190 at the store for similar cuts.
  • Goat = $100/share = 1 share = 17 lbs
    • price/lb = $5.88/lb

Whoa! 35 lbs is a lot of beef. Will this fit in my freezer and how long does it last?

  • An average-sized fridge freezer (i.e. the standard freezer in most tiny downtown condos) holds approximately 50-60 lbs of meat. So, yes, you can fit 1 beef share in your freezer, and probably also some pork.
  • Your meat comes wrapped in butchers’ paper and will last 6-12 months in your freezer. Your meatpool share should easily last you an entire year, assuming you eat meat at home 2-5 times a week. Want to get more meat, but don’t have the space? Consider splitting a share with a friend.

What comes in your share?

  • A meatpool lets a group of people divide up an animal equally in terms of weight and cuts. We truly use up the entire animal, and nothing goes to waste. I divide up the shares when the meat arrives; you come and pick up your box of delicious meat. It’s like a box of meat surprises! This will give you an ideal of the typical cuts that come in a share. Cuts may vary depending on the particular animal is butchered, but everyone gets roughly the same cuts. Learn more about the different cuts of meat and how to use them here.
  • Beef (35 lbs/share)
    • Ground beef – 8 lbs
    • Stew – 1 lb
    • Roasts – 4 (2-3 lbs each)
    • Steaks – 8 (1 lb each)
    • Bones – 1-2 bags (3-5 lbs each) (great for making stock)
    • Organs (optional, included in your share price) – 1-2 cuts of your choice (i.e. liver, heart, kidney, tongue)
  • Pork (25 lbs/share)
    • Roasts (loin, butt, shoulder, ham) – 2-3 (3-4 lbs each)
    • Ground pork – 1 lb
    • Chops – 3-5
    • Filet/tenderloin – 1
    • Ribs, Shank, or Hocks – 1-2
    • Ham steak – 1
    • Speck – 1 (similar to pancetta or bacon)
    • Bacon – 1
    • Bones – 1-2 bags (great for making stock)
    • Fatback (optional) (great for making lard – use in pastries or for deep-frying)
    • Organs (optional) (i.e. liver, kidney)
  • Goat (17 lbs/share)
    • Chops or stew meat – 2 packages each
    • Roast (leg, shoulder, or belly) – 2-3 (3-4 lbs/each)
    • Organs – 1 cut of your choice (liver, kidney, or heart)
    • Bones – 1 bag

Where is your meat raised?
Fresh Coast Meats sources its meats from small family ranchers with organic practices in Lac La Hache, BC. The beef comes from the Wood Family Ranch and the pork and goat come from the Summerhayes family at Helena Lake Ranch.

The Wood family has been raising beef cattle for 3 generations in the Cariboo. They raise the cattle on their ranch in Lac La Hache. Their cattle are humanely treated and spend most of their lives grazing on pastures. They are hormone free and are finished on the Wood’s own home grown alfalfa hay and barley with molasses. The feed contains no antibiotics or urea.

The Summerhayes family has been raising various ranch stock for the last 8 years at Helena Lake Ranch which is situated on 200 acres of mixed forest and meadows. The ranch is an all-natural farm with free-range, forage-raised pigs, goats, chickens, and cattle. Their animals are raised naturally in a low-stress and crate-free environment, fed organically, and handled humanely. The pigs are born on the ranch without the use of crates and stay with their mother until she naturally weans them around 12 weeks old (on most commercial farms, piglets are weaned at 6 weeks old). Fresh water and a natural grain & flax supplement is provided in addition to what the pigs naturally root and forage. The goats are on a strictly forage-based diet. When the goats are being milked, they get an additional ration of organic alfafa pellets, sunflower seeds and flax. The animals’ feed contains no antibiotics, hormones, or medications. The property is a combination of wild meadows and forest, allowing the animals to range daily foraging on a wide variety of native grasses, weeds, and plants.The Summerhayes also make goat cheese – email me for more details.

Fresh Coast Meats arranges for the animals to be humanely slaughtered in the Cariboo, as close to the animals’ home as possible, so as to limit the stress hormones in the final meat product. The meat is cut and wrapped by local butchers in the Cariboo and delivered down to the coast.

If you have any questions about how our meat is raised, please don’t hesitate to contact Jenn.

Do you sell chicken? How about veggies?
For delicious, pasture-raised chicken, please visit our friends at K&M Farms in Abbotsford.

For delicious, organic veggies, please contact Andrew Vogler at Crisp Organics in Abbotsford for details of his CSA (Community-Supported Agriculture) box or visit him at a local farmers’ market: cfvogler (at) hotmail (dot) com. [ED: You may remember my blog post about our weekly farm box!]

I’m in! How do I sign up?
Email Jenn by Sept 30 October 6th. Tell her whether you want beef, pork, and/or goat, and how many shares you want of each meat. Beef shares are 35 lbs each ($350); pork shares are 25 lbs each ($150); and goat shares are 17 lbs each ($100).

Jenn will email you 2 weeks before the meat is ready to be picked up. You’ll have a month to pick up the meat, with weekend pick-up dates at Save On Meats at 43 W. Hastings Street in Vancouver. You pay Jenn when you pick up the meat (in cash, cheque, or Interac Email Money Transfer).

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