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Ethical Meat Eating

A couple of people have asked me about where I buy my meat, particularly with respect to how the farmers treat the animals. Basically what you are looking for is generally found in small producers rather than massive commercial enterprises. You want the animals to be treated with care and respect from birth to death. The best possible life would include being untethered, able to wander and forage, access to shade when it's hot, access to shelter when it's cold, and of course a humane death.

In some respects, one of the only way to satisfy yourself that this is happening is to see the farming practices first hand. However I have found one slightly easier way than that - Feather and Bone www.featherandbone.com.au

They have been certified by Humane Choice, meaning all their products fit this standard (in fact it is actually even more exacting than I would be, becuase I have seen things like fly-strike which to me indicates practices like mulesing are actually often in the sheep's best interest): http://humanechoice.com.au/

I have made a first order and am very impressed. Italian garlic (I hate the intensity of the Chinese stuff flooding our market), Biodynamic Organic Ways Eggs (loaded with flavour) and Organic Ways Duck Breasts (lovely flavour, didn't shrink much when cooked).

I also bought some of the direct from the chef at Bistro Ortolan products, including a WONDERFUL Chicken Liver Parfait. It was $15 for 100g which fed us both easily. It was rich and unctuous! The plate above has half 100g piece. You can also buy his stocks, veal jus, cafe de Paris butters and other products.

The way it works is you sign up to their email list, they send you an email on a Monday. A minimum order is $50, and they delivered my first order on a Friday. Five orders earns you a free gift. They were reasonably prompt, and very nice to deal with when they delivered, in an insulated box, which they ask you to unpack immediately so they can take it away. You can see a full price list online here, but because these are SMALL farmers, they don't always have everything on the list, hence the weekly email: http://www.featherandbone.com.au/pdf/FandB_at_home_list_15_Sep.pdf

This week I am trying their chicken, a contentious area for ethics, so I am will very happily report back on flavour because these chooks are guaranteed to be ethically raised.



( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 1st, 2009 05:32 am (UTC)
If you manage to get the recipe off the chef for that parfait I will love you for oooh hours.
Jun. 1st, 2009 07:04 am (UTC)
$50 min order rules me out.
Jun. 1st, 2009 08:18 am (UTC)
The way I see it, I found it to look expensive initially, but when I thought about it, it didn't seem so bad. The butters for example, we sliced up the 'devon-style' butters into slices big enough for a single steak, and then zip lock bagged them and froze them. That will now take care of at least 8 meals, where no gravy or saucing will be required. Eggs need to costed out over a number of meals. If you buy and freeze meats perhaps spending $50 is not so bad, assuming you will eat them slowly over a few weeks?
Jun. 1st, 2009 11:09 am (UTC)
yeah. have signed up and will give it a go. i've got a little freezer section full of meat now but once i've got through that...
Jun. 1st, 2009 07:28 am (UTC)
If what's pictured is only half of the 100g parfait, it's well worth it. I signed up to their mailing list last night. As money is a little tight at the moment, I may have to wait until I can order from them. I am already dreaming of a Gundooee rolled roast Wagyu flank with duck fat potatoes. *drools*
Jun. 1st, 2009 08:14 am (UTC)
I know the eggs sound expensive at $10, but they were OH SO WORTH IT. The flavour when we did them as baked eggs was superb. The duck breasts were a little on the smaller side, but only cost us $12 for a double. I am trying the chook this time.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )