How big of a freezer do I need...

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Bishoujo, Jul 2, 2007.

  1. Bishoujo

    Bishoujo Well-Known Member

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    For:

    1 cow
    1 pig
    100 chickens
    2 geese
    3 turkeys

    And what if I just have half of those? (Half a pig, half a cow, etc.)

    I'm trying to figure out what size freezer I need and looking at all of that meat at once, it just seems like I'd need a walk in locker.

    Any ideas would be appreciated. (Or send me to the forum that I should be at!)

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. texican

    texican Well-Known Member

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    I've seen pigs as large as most cows. My uncle brought his last hog home from the locker plant... 700lbs of packaged meat.

    I'd say you're looking at at least two large chest types. I doubt if the largest commonly available chest freezer would hold all of those critters. With two freezers, you also have some flexibility, and backup capability, if the other fails.

    I'd probably put the cow and hog in the freezer, and let the rest walk around a while, and eat em fresh, when needed (that is, if the critters are still alive).
     

  3. RosewoodfarmVA

    RosewoodfarmVA Well-Known Member

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    For what's listed atleast 2 or 3 freezers! 100 meat type chickens will take up a freezer. How about salting/smoking the pig? Maybe canning the other meats? If you have two freezers, fill up one completely, then as you are filling the other one use only meat from the first. Use the first one up completely, then start on the second. This way you will never have old meat, It seems that with one freezer only the stuff on top gets eaten, the stuff on the bottom keeps getting covered again and just sits there for years!
     
  4. paintlady

    paintlady Well-Known Member

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    Wow- you really need a couple of large chest freezers. Have you considered canning any of this meat? If your power goes out for any length of time you may lose the stuff in your freezer.
     
  5. bill not in oh

    bill not in oh Well-Known Member

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    1 cow - can't help with this, but I suspect about 30 cu ft
    1 pig = 7 cu ft if the live weight at slaughter is 240 lbs
    100 chickens = about 25 cu ft (average 5 lbs dressed)
    2 geese = about 3 cu ft
    3 turkeys = about 6-10 cu ft depending on breed (BBW will be much larger than most heritage breeds)

    Side note: If you are going to store this much meat, buy a good generator. Having it split between 2-3 freezers won't give you any "backup" advantage as they will all be full.
     
  6. Ramblin Wreck

    Ramblin Wreck Well-Known Member Supporter

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  7. Cabin Fever

    Cabin Fever Life NRA Member since 1976 Supporter

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    Wow, how big of a family do you have? You do know, that the quality of the meat detriorates after being frozen for a year. Can you really consume that much meat in a year or so?
     
  8. MountAiry

    MountAiry Well-Known Member

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    You don't need a freezer! What you really need is to have a great big BBQ and invite all of us!
    lol
    :)
     
  9. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    How about getting one large freezer and canning the rest of the meat. :)
    I can a lot of meat and save the freezer space for other things.
     
  10. farminghandyman

    farminghandyman Well-Known Member Supporter

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    a walk in, one of the big ones you can drive the fork lift in, :)

    two large chest freezers or three medium sized freezers, in my opinion,
    our large one is 23 cubic foot, and we have two smaller ones about a third less in size is my guess, there in the barn so I am not going to look,

    we just put 75 chickens into one (I call it medium sized chest freezer) and it is 3/4 filled,
     
  11. wewantout

    wewantout Well-Known Member

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    I have never canned meat does it not get mushy after awhile? Do you can it with seasonings added? Or does it overpower the meat overtime?

    Cheers
     
  12. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    I've never had any get mushy, and I've been canning since 1972?. I can't remember my mom or grandma having any trouble with mushy meat either.

    I also can with seasonings most of the time. Some herbs do get stronger with the canning process, you can use a small amount of herbs or just season to taste when you use the meat. :)
     
  13. tinetine'sgoat

    tinetine'sgoat Luvin' my family in MO

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    Really kinda depends on how big they all are. If you butcher the cow at 800 lbs or 1300 lbs makes a big difference, same with the pig. 100 chickens just about fills our upright to overflowing. However we have a lady at our church who butchers her chickens at 1 1/2 lbs so they wouldn't take up near as much space. We just had a hog butchered at 180 lbs and it filled up 2 shelves in our upright. Currently we have a hog, deer and probably 60 chickens in a upright and a small chest freezer and they are pretty full. I agree with CF that unless you are feeding a very large family a lot of meat maybe you could butcher at different times to make sure nothing has a chance to get to old. We kinda stager ours out for that reason.
     
  14. Jim-mi

    Jim-mi Well-Known Member

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    My vote is for the BIG BBQ.
     
  15. Calico Katie

    Calico Katie Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I was looking at a meat locker sale a couple of weeks ago and according to their figures you could put 250 lbs. of beef in a 9 cu. ft. chest freezer. That was the weight before being cut and wrapped. So, if you have an idea of the weight of the cow and pig, you can roughly figure from that.
     
  16. desnri

    desnri Well-Known Member

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    My mom butchered 2 calves last year. Their combined packaged weight was about 400 pounds. She has a large upright freezer and a small chest type freezer and that was not enough to hold all the meat.
     
  17. bill not in oh

    bill not in oh Well-Known Member

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    Pork and beef should take up about the same space. I can put 450 lbs of pork in my 21 cu ft upright. There's not much air left in it, but it fits....
     
  18. Christiaan

    Christiaan Dutch Highlands Farm

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    I think a large chest freezer could handle everything but the chickens. Chickens are bulky for the weight, that is a three pound chicken will take up more room than a three pound roast. For the same reason, its much harder to prevent freezer burn with chickens. So, for me, I'd reduce the number of chickens and raise two or three batches each year rather than one big batch.
    That said, how many are you feeding and for how long, because that is a horrendous amount of meat.
     
  19. QuiltingLady2

    QuiltingLady2 Well-Known Member

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    We have the largest chest freezer that whirlpool made in the late 90's. We call it the 3 person freezer. I don't believe there is a freezer made that will take all of that. You may just need two.

    JMO TIFWIW
     
  20. bill not in oh

    bill not in oh Well-Known Member

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