Honored Prairie: My First Local, Organic Meat Purcahse

One of the hardest aspects of Paleo has nothing to do with what you give up. As much as possible, Paleo asks us to eat unprocessed food and natural produce. I could write an entire post about the crazy stuff they do to our meat before it gets on our shelves.

A friend of mine who is well versed in nutrition once told me, “If you can only afford to buy one thing organic, buy organic meat.” He explained that fruits and vegetables may have been sprayed with certain chemicals, but our meat has been exposed to much more. When alive, the animal’s food was covered in chemicals and it was shot up with even more chemicals. After death, as the meat was being processed, it was again covered in other chemicals. A person is then getting three times the exposure they would get from a plant.

The reason a lot of these chemicals get put in our meat is because of the way we raise them when alive. You’ve seen the sad stories of calves having their horns burned off before they have a chance to grow in and chickens cooped up so tightly they can’t even walk around. Those are the perfect conditions for disease to spread and the very reason why animals are given certain chemicals and antibiotics.

2014-01-04 11.23.02
Here is what my packages looked like when I picked them up.

Since I’m going Paleo for these first two months of 2014, I decided to take the opportunity to purchase some organic, pasture raised animal products. Using eatwild.com, I came across Honored Prairie Farms. The local farm I bought products from is located in Indiana, but they have periodic drop-off locations around the Chicagoland area.

I’m no cooking pro and I’m not a big fan of bones in meat, so I went with ground meats. in my opinion, they are the easiest to work with. My purchase included 10 pounds of ground turkey, one pound of ground sirloin and two dozen eggs. The total cost was $90.90.

This is what the meat looked like when I opened the box.
This is what the meat looked like when I opened the box.
And here are my eggs!. Yes, they are brown.
And here are my eggs!. Yes, they are brown.

That’s a big price, especially when you compare it to how much all that would cost at Wal-Mart. To me, this is about health. I can either pay for it now, or later. Eating healthy doesn’t guarantee I will avoid all the big diseases out there, but it does dramatically reduce my chances. When I was in college, one of my coworkers worked with the American Cancer Society. She told me 2/3 of all cancer cases in the United States are preventable. The China Study (of which I am on page 89 out of 350) has cited at least one study where it was found that only 2-3% of all cancer cases are related to genetic inevitability.

Do you know how much it costs to have cancer, or heart disease or any of the other complications related to poor eating habits? I don’t even want to think about the dollar amount, let alone the emotional toll. All this is to say that, to me, $90.90 doesn’t seem like a lot in comparison.

I don’t expect to need more meat for another month, unless I have a bunch of people come over. The staple of any Paleo meal is vegetables. For whatever reason, I’ve had a harder time tracking down farmer’s markets for fresh fruits and vegetables. By “harder time” I mean that I want to buy everything online and haven’t found a good web source. I’d rather spend 15 minutes picking out what I want online than spending a whole day at a farmer’s market.  I haven’t given up yet, though. The real question is whether I can financially afford to buy both organic meat and vegetables.

Overall, I’ve had a great experience with my first purchase from a local farm. Have you ever bought or thought of buying organic meats? Do you know a good online resource for buying organic fruits and vegetables? What do you think of the price I paid for these animal products?


5 thoughts on “Honored Prairie: My First Local, Organic Meat Purcahse”

    1. I certainly think it’s important. There are plenty of people out there who may disagree and say the price is to high to pay. As far as I’m concerned, I will buy organic if I am lucky enough to afford it.

      That being said, I recommend doing research into any product that claims to be organic. The FDA has yet to define what that means. Plenty of food companies use the word organic to sell products even though they are not truly organic.

  1. do you not have a local farmers market near you to get vegetables? I’m kinda fortunate cause 6 miles from my house is Eastern Market which happens to be the largest (and oldest) farmers market in the entire united states….Detroit has a bunch of problems but locally grown vegetables is definitely not one of them…..I don’t eat meat…but the Amish farmers have multiple booths as well and they offer all (what your calling organic meat) the animal byproducts that they have to offer.

    $90 seems a ton for a lot of people….I’ve always been annoyed at how expensive organic products cost…..I drink almond milk (allergic to normal milk) and it costs $3.50 for half a gallon so that is more than a mere gallon of cows milk costs! (a gallon of cow milk costs $2.50)

    1. It cost more to make healthier products, so it doesn’t bother me too much. It cost less than the many health problems the other products can cause.

      People have told me about a number of farmer’s markets in the area. My problem is I’ve had a hard time finding a website for them. I’m a planner, and I want to know where they’re at, what time they run and, if possible, what products are for sale.

      What I REALLY want is the amazon of vegetables. I want to go online, select what I want, and then pick it up at whatever location I need to. It doesn’t sound like too much to ask in this day and age. I recently bough a Paleo cookbook that has a number of web sources for this kind of stuff. I’ve been meaning to make a visit to their vegetable website.

      1. yea….that’s where we are a bit different (at least at this particular moment in my life)….I’m all about the ‘unkown’….first time I went to eastern market I had no idea what I was going to….and I dunno…my life feels boring at times so I like to break up the monotony with the adventure of going somewhere in which I don’t know what to expect…..but I totally understand where you’re coming from because there have also been long seasons in my life where I wanted everything planned out; especially when I’m busy and have a lot going on I need to know all the details 🙂

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