Can't even give away Thanksgiving Beef!!

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Haggis, Nov 11, 2004.

  1. Haggis

    Haggis MacCurmudgeon

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    I tried to sell a couple of cows a few weeks back but the fellow couldn't get here to pick them up. I then figured to butcher both cows: one cow (and a 2 year old bull) for my kids, and the other cow to give to the local soup kitchen and food shelf.

    Anyway, I went by the place and told them what I wanted to do and they came up with this list of rules. No problem with the rules says I, but I need help butchering and wrapping the beast. At this point there was a heap crawfishing on their part.

    Herself carries 80 to 100 dozen eggs from our hens to give them every month all washed and in cartons, but this is the first time we have asked for any help. It looks like some of the folks that work there could spare a little time to help butcher and wrap the critter. Ahh well, I guess folks are busy and butchering is a heavy and messy job.

    It is frustrating though.
     
  2. AngieM2

    AngieM2 Big Front Porch advocate Supporter

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    Darn it - if I were near you, I'd come at least wrap to get some of that good beef. Don't know how good I'd be at cutting it up - never had opportunity to try.

    I think it's great you at least tried to share.

    AngieM2
     

  3. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    Ask a local processor to donate the processing for the give-away cow.

    I just donated two giant turkeys to a children's home. They have 27 kids, so I guess they can eat a 36 pound turkey! Gave them the 35 pounder just for kicks.

    Jena
     
  4. GREEN_ALIEN

    GREEN_ALIEN Sunny, Wet, Tornadoey SD!

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    It is a great thing you are trying to do.

    I wouldn't bother with asking a processor for help. You have asked the people that want the food for help and were denied... I guess they can't do a bit of work for thier food...
     
  5. oz in SC

    oz in SC Well-Known Member

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    Sad how charities don't seem to WANT ....well charity.

    Very nice of you to do this and the eggs is another nice thing-how many chooks do you have?

    We have been getting a bit of a glut here lately but quite a few people around here buy them.

    Good job......EVEN if you are a socialist...LOL
     
  6. DreamingBig

    DreamingBig Well-Known Member

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    Of course I don't know what was said, but I think most people would be VERY put off by being asked to help butcher an animal. Especially a cow! With their sweet bown eyes and friendly nature, the source of much-revered milk, almost a mother-substitute, cows have a special place in our society and are about the last thing any non-farm person would ever want to slaughter! :eek: Chickens, pigs, a steer maybe, but a cow is just too much to expect from most folks. If you ask them for help with something other than killing animals and they refuse, then I say the heck with 'em! :mad:
     
  7. GREEN_ALIEN

    GREEN_ALIEN Sunny, Wet, Tornadoey SD!

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    Food is food when you aint got it. All of those brown eyed, good natured, milk makers do have a name.... it is called Hamburger at the local grocer. That is after a short stint as a milk maker of course. People in general need to get a grip.. they all know where meat comes from and how it transforms from living to cut and wrapped, put off or not the facts don't change.

    GA
     
  8. BamaSuzy

    BamaSuzy Well-Known Member

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    I am not a major meat eater but I think your gesture (and the fact your wife donates eggs!) is GREAT! Why not see if there's a church (IF you know of one that can be trusted) or other such charity that might have somebody that would want to help you and then would know of worthy but needy families that could use some of the meat???? Perhaps you could do a wee bit of investigating on your own to find such a family and see if one of them wants to help.....and if they're not willing to help, too bad. They've just lost out on some great free food....Our FOP helps out families with kids, and elderly folks at Christmas....they always have a list of folks in need....perhaps a law enforcement officer would help....some of them are pretty physically fit....

    best wishes!
     
  9. MorrisonCorner

    MorrisonCorner Mansfield, VT for 200 yrs

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    I gotta agree with the poster who says you may have asked too much. Now don't everyone get all righteous and radical on me... I know where my meat comes from as well as the next person... but "butcher" is a profession for a reason. Most people are not comfortable killing things. And most people do not have the expertise to take a large animal apart.

    I really think that underlying this discussion is going to be an element of "I'm so cool... I can do this." Well, that's great... but that doesn't make you a better, more robust, or neater person than someone who can't. It just means you have a different skill set.

    Not that you're the toughest bear on the block.

    I'd go back to them and explain that you'll do the slaughtering... what they'll be working with is a full hanging beef, just like what a grocery store gets on their delivery trucks. Obviously they'll need to have this cut down, which you'd be happy to do for them, but you need assistance. Or... you'd be happy to deliver the full beef to a grocer with a butcher who will do it for them for a nominal fee.

    But cutting and gutting? That's a bit much to ask of someone who has never been exposed to butchering.
     
  10. GeorgeK

    GeorgeK Well-Known Member

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    He didn't say "come do it yourself" he said he needed help to help them. He obviously has the know how and the equipment, but needs a few extra pairs of hands. That sounds to me to be a very nice arrangement for the "charity". There's probably homesteaders around who would jump at a chance like that, just to learn how to do it. I say find a different "charity"
     
  11. Cornhusker

    Cornhusker Unapologetically me Supporter

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    It's not surprising, if those people were into working, they wouldn't be eating at a soup kitchen to start with.
     
  12. Haggis

    Haggis MacCurmudgeon

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    Herself and I worked in a slaughter house,in season, when we were much younger: she in the wrapping department, and I did the slaughtering, skinning, and sometimes the cutting; so we have the experience, but we're not as young as we once were, and a slaughter house has lifts to do the really heavy work.

    On the eggs, we have about 100 Gold Stars hybrids and some old heritage breeds. Herself is teaching so I do everything except deliver the eggs; well she helps wash them and put them in cartons.

    I know that the one older cow and the young bull will be plenty for my kids, their families, Herself, and me.

    You gentlefolk have given me some good ideas; thanks a heap.

    By-the-by, the younger cow is a 3 year old of my Milking Devons. She is in calf and about four and a half months along, but she is a very small cow for the breed. Her udder is very small; even for a Milking Devon, and the nice lady who sold her to me said that her first calf starved to death (of course this information came after she had been purchased and delivered). Too bad! Just too bad! I heard the other day that there are only 360 of these animals on the books, and here is a young first calf heifer not really worth keeping as part of a herd; and I can't even figure out how to give her meat to the soup kitchen.

    I guess on the up side, she doesn't eat much.
     
  13. ajaxlucy

    ajaxlucy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I think you're probably right. For people who have never done it, butchering a large animal is so far from their experience that the thought of helping out is enough to start them edging for the door. As intimidating as if someone were to ask them to help out with surgery or, even worse, an autopsy.

    I know we think it's hypocritical to eat meat but not be willing to see how it comes from an animal, but honestly, so many people are disconnected from the foods they eat. I volunteer at a food pantry where many folks live off of boxed, canned, and processed foods. Many can't even recognize, much less prepare, a lot of fresh vegetables. It's wonderful that you supply them with something fresh and natural (and perishable) like eggs.
     
  14. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    Haggis and Jena
    What you have done is very generous,let me say Thank You for your kindness.I would spend a day at your place to help butcher just for the experience,a nice free education on butchering,cant beat that.Perhaps you can get a taker for that education out your way?
    BooBoo
     
  15. pamda

    pamda Well-Known Member Supporter

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    haggis, i would come help in exchange for the learning except i think it would be a long drive from here in idaho. it is a very nice thing you and your wife be doin'. i would love to know more about this breed of cattle and the chickens too pam
     
  16. ratherbefishin

    ratherbefishin Well-Known Member

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    I think most people are just too intimidated by the prospect of butchering a beef.Personally, I'd be more than delighted to learn how[I've done numerous deer, but a beef is a bit more daunting ]
    Are there any nightschool classes that offer basic butchering?You might donate an annimal to that.A neighbour took a 6 week butchers class for small holders- he said it was invaluable to pick up the basic techniques, even for hunters
     
  17. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    Obviously they are not hungry enough. I know that sounds cold but it is what one of the problems with charity. I notice someone responded they would come and help for the experience. Now that is someone that will never need charity. It's like the "give a man a fish and feed him for a day, teach the man to fish and feed him for life" saying.
    I'm sure if you sold the cow and donated the money they would be happier.
     
  18. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    Was it the employees or the clients that wouldn't come and help? I couldn't quite tell.

    I don't think it is any more hypocritical to eat meat and dislike the butchering part than it is to hate sewing and buy clothes. Some things I'd rather trade or pay for since I am not skilled in it or don't want to do it. As long as I can afford to make that choice, no big deal. I also don't want to drain my own septic tank, doesn't mean I am removed from the cycles of decay. I am well aware of them and choose to pay a person who makes a living that way. I call it supporting the economy!

    I buy my meat from a local farmer and it is great. He sends it to a butcher and I pay the butcher bill. It works for all 3 of us.
     
  19. Haggis

    Haggis MacCurmudgeon

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    I ask the employees for help.

    I have often been told not to feed "deadbeats", but I think of the old folks who have nothing or use their small incomes for needed medicine, the infirm who can't help themselves, and the needy children. If 2/3rd's of the people eating in the soup kitchen or getting food from the Food Shelf qualified as "deadbeats" it wouldn't change one thing for me.

    God has been very good to me. I have healthy five children, 10 healthy Grand-Darlings, a loving wife of 33 years, and I'm fit as a fiddle most of the time. When I see or hear of folks who maybe have not been blessed as well, I just feel like maybe their blessing might depend on what someone else decides to do next; ignore them or share a wee bit.

    As my Grandmother would say, "I ain't nothing but something to do, and it ain't nothing but right."
     
  20. fordy

    fordy Well-Known Member

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    ........................I'd love to come over and shoot the Bull!! ;) ... :) fordy