What Types of Meat Shares Do You Offer?
In 2023, we’re offering 4 types of Meat CSA Shares using BBF Pastured Chicken, Pastured Pork and Grassfed Beef:
> Beef, Pork & Chicken
> Beef & Chicken
> Beef Only
> Chicken Only
Sign up for a full season (June – November) and receive a delivery every 4 weeks OR choose specific months to receive a delivery.
How Many Pounds Do I Receive for Each Delivery?
Approximate weight is for EACH delivery.
Each delivery weight will be based on the value of the cuts included. Example: Beef Steaks (higher value) vs Beef Roast (lesser value)
Grassfed Beef, Pastured Pork and Chicken
Approximately 15-20 lbs per delivery
Grassfed Beef and Pastured Chicken
Approximately 18-20 lbs per delivery
Pastured Chicken Only
Approximately 18 lbs per delivery
What Meat Should I Expect in A Meat Share?
The following is an approximation of what will be included in the Meat Shares. Please keep in mind changes and substitutions will occur.
Grassfed Beef, Pork and Chicken
- June: 1 pkg. Sirloin Steak, 1 pkg Pork Chops, 1 pkg Bratwurst, 1 lb. Breakfast Sausage, Ground Beef, 2 Whole Chickens
- July: Chuck Roast, Ground Beef, 1 pkg. Pork Chops, 1 lb. Bacon, 1 lb. Italian Sausage, 2 Whole Chickens
- August: 1 pkg. Ribeyes, 1 lb. Pork Stir Fry, 1 lb Ground Pork, 1 pkg. Pork Chops, Ground Beef, 2 Whole Chickens
- September: Rolled Rump Roast, 1 pkg Pork Chops, Bacon, 1 lb. Italian Sausage, Ground Beef, 2 Whole Chickens
- October: Top Sirloin Steak, Pork Shoulder Roast, 1 lb. Breakfast Sausage, 1 lb. Italian Sausage, 2 Whole Chickens
- November: Arm Roast, 1 pkg Bratwurst, 1 pkg Pork Chops, 1 lb. Ground Pork, Ground Beef, 2 Whole Chickens
Grassfed Beef and Chicken Meat Share (NO Pork)
The number of pounds of ground beef depends on the value of the major cut of beef included each month.
- June: Sirloin Steak, Beef Stew Meat, Beef Stir Fry Strips, Ground Beef, 3 Whole Chickens
- July: Chuck Roast, Beef Short Ribs, Ground Beef, 3 Whole Chickens
- August: T-Bone Steaks, Ground Beef, 3 Whole Chickens
- September: Rolled Rump Roast, Ground Beef, 3 Whole Chickens
- October: Top Sirloin Steak, Beef Stir Fry Strips, Beef Stew Meat, Ground Beef, 3 Whole Chickens
- November: Arm Roast, Beef Soup Bone, Ground Beef, 3 Whole Chickens
Chicken Only Meat Share
Each monthly delivery you will receive approximately 4 whole chickens with each delivery. The weight of our meat chickens ranges from approximately 3.0 – 5 lbs and the number you receive depends on weight of each bird.
What Are the Approximate Sizes of Each Cut?
The chickens are whole or cut up frozen birds weighing 3.5 – 5.0 lbs. Each chicken includes the neck, liver and heart.
Grass Fed Grass Finished Beef
- Porterhouse Steak, 2 per pkg., approx. 2 lbs. total, 1” thick
- Ribeye Steak, 2 per pkg., 1-1.5 lbs. total, 1” thick
- T-Bone Steak, 2 per pkg., 1.5-2 lbs. total, 1“ thick
- Sirloin Steak, 1 per pkg., 1.5-2 lbs. total, 1“ thick
- Sirloin Tip Roast, approx. 2.5 – 3.5 lbs.
- Rolled Rump Roast, approx. 2.5 – 3.5 lbs.
- Chuck Roast, approx. 2.5 – 3.5 lbs.
- Arm Roast, approx. 2.5 – 3.5 lbs.
- Short Ribs, approx. 1.5 – 2 lb. pkg.
- Soup Bone, 1 per pkg., approx. 1/2 – 1 lb. pkg.
- Stew Meat, 1 lb. pkg.
- Ground Beef, 1 lb. pkg.
All Sausages, Bacon and Ham are created using Certified Organic processing. This means real organic ingredients and no MSG, preservatives, nitrates, nitrites, synthetic colors.
- Pork Chops, 2/pkg., approx. 1 lb.
- Pork Shoulder Roast, approx. 2.5 – 3.5 lbs.
- Spare Ribs, 2 racks, approx. 3 lb pkg.
- Bacon*, approx. 1 lb. pkg.
- Bacon Ends*, approx. 1 lb. pkg.
- Ham Roast*, approx. 3-4 lbs.
- Ham Steak*, approx. 1 lb. pkg.
- Hocks*, 1 per pkg., approx. 1 – 2 lbs.
- Bratwurst*, 8 ct, 2 lb. pkg.
- Breakfast Sausage*, 1 lb. pkg., bulk
- Italian Sausage*, 1 lb. pkg., bulk
- Italian Sausage*, links, 8 ct, 2 lb. pkg.
- Ground Pork, 1 lb. pkg.
*Certified Organic processing – NO artificial ingredients, MSG, synthetic colorants, nitrates or nitrites
How Are The Animals Raised?
We receive the chicks when they are just one or two days old. For the first 2 weeks, the tender chicks are given supplemental heat and kept sheltered to protect them until they are sturdy enough to spend their days outdoors.
After 3 weeks, the chicks no longer need extra heat and begin leaving the chicken house to roam and graze. They receive a diet of Certified Organic grain and pasture. They forage daily supplementing their diet with grass, clover, weed seeds, insects, worms – exactly how a chicken eats when given her natural environment. Chickens love to graze – they NEED to graze and forage and scratch. And, our chickens are allowed to do exactly that. They are protected from predators by an electrified fence and our beautiful watch dog, Bella.
When evening comes and the sun is setting, the chickens voluntarily go into their shelter for protection from weather and predators. Like all other animals on the farm, the broilers receive no antibiotics, growth hormones, vaccinations or any medications whatsoever during their lifetime.
The beef is 100% Grassfed and Grass Finished – no grain ever. The young beef heifers or steers come to our farm from a Certified Organic Grassfed farm here in Illinois. Using rotational grazing which maximizes the quality and quantity of the pasture, the beef calves graze 24/7.
During the winter, if forage is not available, our beef cattle are fed Certified Organic hay.
The beef is harvested when the animals are approximately 26 months of age. Once processed, the beef is dry aged for 14 days before cutting, wrapping and freezing.
Our beef is completely finished on grass. They are finished to have good fat cover which gives our beef big clean flavor.
We raise our own pigs from our Old Gloucester Spot sow and we purchase a few young piglets each year. We only purchase young pigs who have been raised clean – no vaccines, medications, antibiotics.
Our pigs are pastured and happily root and romp in the grass and mud. The hogs are excellent composters happily consuming any weeds, spent plants, and the not so perfect vegetables. Our hogs live a good life and they are free to act as pigs do – snouts to the ground, sniffing, rooting, and foraging just as they would in their natural environment. Their intense need to root is obvious when you see the ground after they give it a good going over – incredible!
Besides pasture, the pigs also receive a ration of Certified Organic grain. Just like the beef and chickens, the pigs receive no vaccinations, growth hormones, or any medications in their lifetime. The pigs are the most popular animals on farm for their friendliness and curiosity.
Why Are Pastured Meats Better?
Pastured meat is the best situation for the animal, consumer and the environment. Having our animals on pasture more closely resembles their natural environment and grazing patterns. The pasture based diet keeps the livestock healthy and stress free. Secondly, it is well documented that pastured meats are more nutritious – higher in omega 3’s, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, beta-carotene, calcium, magnesium and potassium. Pastured meats also have more complexity of flavor and better texture than meat from confinement raised livestock.
Pasturing livestock is the most environmentally friendly way of raising meat. Our perennial pastures protect our topsoil from eroding because plants are covering our pastures 365 days a year. Manure generated by our livestock returns this valuable soil building material right where it belongs – on the ground – where it enriches our soils.
If this is not proof enough, just take a look at a pastured chicken, pastured pig or grassfed beef herd. There is nothing so satisfying as watching a chicken tear into a patch of clover, a pig devouring a clump of grass or grassfed beef calves pulling up mouthfuls of spring forage. They are content and satisfied and we can’t stop watching. Now, take a look at the confinement chickens, pigs and cattle. If that sadness isn’t enough to change your mind to eat meat raised with respect for the animals, then you’re not looking hard enough.
Where and How Is The Meat Processed?
The grassfed beef and pastured pork are processed at Bittner’s Eureka Locker in Eureka, Illinois. This is a small USDA inspected meat locker. The animals make the trip to the locker in our livestock trailer and are not crowded or cramped in any way. The beef is dry aged for 14 days before cutting, wrapping, and freezing.
The pork is cut, wrapped, and frozen without aging. All meat processing is certified organic including sausage seasoning and any cured pork products like bacon and ham. Our sausages, bacon and hams contain NO MSG, no synthetic ingredients, no nitrates, no nitrites, no gluten – no bad stuff!
The chickens are processed at Central Illinois Processing in Arthur, Illinois – a USDA inspected chicken processor. The birds make the trip to Arthur in our livestock trailer. Operated by an Amish family, this processing plant does not use any bleach or other chemical to clean the chickens. The chickens are chilled, wrapped and labeled then packed into coolers with ice for the ride home to the farm where we freeze them.
Both the Eureka Locker and Central Illinois Processing are small, family owned and operated facilities. When Brian takes the animals to be processed, he works personally with the owners to assure the meat is processed to our high standards.
When the day does come to take our livestock for processing, we try to make it as stress free as possible. Stress only makes the loading, traveling and unloading situation difficult and uncomfortable so calm heads prevail.