Thanks for spearheading this group. I just signed up today and wanted to ask you before I posted anything on the board for the whole group to see, if it would be OK to let everyone know about a meat event I'm helping to organize. The event is on a local ranch where free range pigs are raised. Two pigs will be slaughtered on site and butchered. Lunch (derived partly from said pigs) will be served and tickets may be purchased to either observe and have lunch or to participate in a butchery class that will be held after the slaughter and have lunch. The event is being put on by Slow Food Delta Diablo (which I am also a member of) and is primarily meant to be for community education but also as a fund raiser. Here's the part that I think BAMCSA -Mt. Diablo members will be interested in most. There will be a silent auction held for pork packages. Here is a link to the website for the event.
I am so excited about the meat csa and can't wait to get in on an order!
I am interested, along with a couple of friends, in joining you. We're in Walnut Creek. I'd love to have a phone conversation with you to find out more about how things work. Let me know if you are willing to do that. Laura
I just got an email from Lisa today that they are planning on doing the hogs this weekend so they are looking for a copy of our instruction sheet for Meridian. I have taken a shot at it and will email it to you if you give me your email address.
I don't have strong feelings either way. I am always up for saving a little money, on the otherhand it might be hard to split meat and make butchering decisions between four people. After you've had some time to mull it over we'll talk.
Sorry I have been slow in getting in touch with you about the hog. Are you still interested in splitting a half a hog with me? If so, below is the info that I got from Lisa at Winddancer Ranch (on Jan 20) about cost, availability, etc. I guess the next step is to let her know we want it and also to fill out the info for the butcher. I am a bit daunted by that part. As far as breed goes, I would vote that we go for the Berkshire. Anyway, let me know your thoughts.
Hi Kiran - Wonderful! We have a couple that will be ready in the next month - after the butcher day it takes 2 to 3 weeks for the cut and wrap facility to do their job cutting the meat and curing and smoking anything you want done like bacon or hams. We definitely favor the purebred Berkshire - it has more marbled meat and is full of flavor. Good marbling (thin strands of fat in the meat) keep it moist when cooked and add flavor. And since the animals are fed a natural diet it is good for you fat - not the bad sat fats. I have to pull all the research I have done together and write a paper to get the word out that healthy and good taste can go together if the animals are fed naturally.
Our Tamworth cross (on Berkshire) are also excellent - just a little less marbling than the pure Berkshire. They are definitely several steps above what you can find in even the gourmet grocery stores. We get rave reviews on both types of hogs.
Berks are $6/lb and Tam/Berk cross are $5/lb based on the hanging weight. Typical hanging weights range from 150 to 200 lbs for a whole hog. So half would be 75 to 100 lbs. Cut and wrap charges are addition - his going rate is on the form but I think its 69 cents per pound based on the hanging weight plus 69 cents a pound for any cuts you want cured and smoked. Vacuum seal is an additional $20 (whole hog) or $10 (half hog) and is worth it. We transport to and from the cut and wrap at no charge then just give you one bill that has the hog price + cut and wrap + delivery fee (if any).
What we would need to get started is just an email saying you wanted the half hog of whichever breed and then the filled out cut and wrap form (attached) - either emailed or faxed to 775-806-8914. We have a couple of weeks - so time to make decisions. Let me know if you have any questions. Also - under "number in family" put 2 so the meat is in smaller packages that are easy to divy up.
I'm a freelance reporter and I'm interested in doing a story about the meat CSA. Would you be up for a chat? If so, please contact me at email@example.com with your email and phone number. Thanks! Sierra