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Changes In Local Meat Processing

September 8, 2022

Things can change with little to no notice!

So, what am I talking about! Well, the processing plant where we have our beef & pork slaughtered has been SOLD.

It is a new plant. One that received grant money from through the MS Department of Agriculture LWT program. The plant, located in Leaksville, opened December 2021 and officially changed ownership August 2022.

We started hearing rumblings in June and when I dropped off our beef in July the word was official. So far they are saying business as usual. But, I have also heard otherwise.

All I know about the new owners is that one of them is an eye doctor and the other owns a lot of hotels (sounds a bit like Monopoly). Both have cattle farms in the local area. And like many cattle farmers are looking for a profitable way to sell their beef vs. the stockyard.

Did you know that 85% of the beef in the USA is eventually owned and processed by FOUR companies - the largest of which is foreign owned? And, according to a recent article in ACRES USA by Eric Jackson, these food companies effectively operate as oligopolies with tremendous leverage on prices, quality, crop selection, and policy.

Here at Nature's Gourmet Farm we had already come to the conclusion that if a farmer is going to be in our business then he must plan to also process his animals on the farm! GULP - lol.

We had moved closer to that reality and then the mobile slaughter trailer option failed. Then, in March I received a letter from the MS Department of Agriculture stating they had some funds available through the LWT program if I needed to upgrade my plant to USDA.

That means I could build my own slaughter capability for beef, pork, and lamb... that would compliment our existing processing capability.

So, I spent a month researching designs, getting quotes, etc. to complete my application deadline. A presentation to the screening committee followed where we got a thumbs up to proceed to the full committee in July. Bottom line is the full committee voted to make us a low interest loan to build our slaughter capability.

Our contractor should get started soon after he returns from the Labor Day holiday and complete before years end.

Who will do the actual slaughter? Fortunately, I have someone with years of experience that will come to our farm 1-2 mornings per month to harvest our animals.

In the mean time, we are here to help families that are committed to healthy, regenerative food for their families.

Maybe you have been looking for premium ALL NATURAL GOODNESS of beef, pork, chicken, and eggs raised on pasture as God intended - with emphasis on Regenerative Principles and NOT conventionally raised animals (with growth hormones, drugs, chemicals, and antibiotics) - and where animals are treated humanely - then you have come to the right farm. Our delivery schedule and product availability is listed below along with order buttons that will take you to our website where you can browse over 90 product choices and place your order from the convenience of your home. It's that simple!

Lastly, Beth & I thank you for trusting us with your food dollars.

** Product Availability Update **

Chicken -Restocked Thursday, August 25th. Next harvest date is September 14th with restock the following day

Eggs - Eggs are still tight but better. Thanks for your patience and remember to check our website each Wednesday just before YOUR delivery.

Beef - Restocked Thursday August 25th. Next restock will be September 26th.

Pork - Fully Stocked 

Lamb - Next harvest date is later this fall.

Ben Simmons

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