I’ve noticed a trend in the last few years, and to my delight it involves locals eating more meat! Why do I get excited when I know people are eating more sustainable meat? Some would think it’s because of the business I am in, but that’s not the case. Although Valbella is happy to provide you with all your meaty needs, I also encourage everyone to have a backup plan such as getting to know a farmer who can sell you high-quality meat direct from the farm. However, the trend I am referring to is hunting and the reason it’s a great trend to see is for the same 3 reasons I have spoken about in the past newsletters about the benefits of eating more high-quality meat.
- For your Health – 15 micronutrients that are only found in animal foods
- For the Environment – We all know that eating sustainable meat is better for the environment than mono-cropping and flying produce and exotic fruits around the world. Cows eat what we can’t so we can eat them
- For the animals – Plant agriculture kills more animals and ecosystems than sustainably raised meat
If you are new to the newsletter and haven’t read those articles, I encourage you to do so. They can be found on our website at www.valbella.ca
Hunting is the purest and most traditional way of harvestings one’s own food. In the past, a successful hunt could mean the difference between life and death. Surviving a winter without ample protein and fat was not easy. It’s only in recent times where we’ve lost touch with the reality of harvesting in the fall for the long winters ahead. No amount of gardens full of kale are going to get you through a winter in Alberta, but in today’s world we don’t need to harvest because everything is available to us in an instant at any time of the year. Maybe it’s time to ask our grandparents and great grandparents what they were eating during the winter, I doubt oranges and bananas were ever on the menu. If I took a wild guess, I’d say most meals consisted of bread, butter and meat with sides such as potatoes and beans. Take away the meat and butter and you’re left with what a vegan diet would have looked like in Alberta many years ago (void of nutrition as it still is today!). This is why a vegan diet is the most unnatural diet in the world, it is simply not sustainable in any shape or form. Perhaps that’s why 84% of vegans go back to eating meat or why there has never been a vegan culture in the history of the world! That’s my vegan rant for the day, now let’s get back to hunting!
I realize that not everyone in the Bow Valley or beyond has easy access to hunting. It’s not something we take up one day and have instant success with. Proper equipment and licenses, as well as the know how to track animals, all the way to shot placement and butchering are all things that need to be learned. If hunting isn’t for you, then I suggest you get to know a hunter. Many times, hunters would gladly sell or give away a portion of their harvest. Alberta is Beef country but before Beef we had Bison, Elk, Deer and many other game animals. When eaten nose to tail they provide the full spectrum of essential nutrients required for the body. Add some carbs such as potatoes and rice to the mix and you have yourself the means to not only survive a winter, but to thrive. To me a diet like this screams local and sustainable in many more ways than anything we’ve ever been told.
If you are eager to get into hunting or have been hunting for many years but want to try out some new products, then here is how Valbella can help:
- First and foremost, all meat brought to Valbella’s for further processing needs a valid tag
- We will also collect information such as the hunter’s WIN #, species, sex, date and location it was harvested. We are audited yearly on these points and NO exceptions will be made
- We cannot accept whole animals or carcasses, all meat brought to us for further processing needs to be deboned and in good condition. We have the right to refuse anything we deem unsafe or improperly handled. If you are unsure of how to process your animal please reach out to me and if there is enough interest Valbella will put together a video series
- Here is a list of items we can make
- Sausage making – Pepperoni sticks, Landjaeger, Smokies, Bratwurst, Italian sausage
- Grinding and packaging
- We accept meat all year up until mid November and then again in January. This is due to our increased production schedule leading up to Christmas
With all the insanity in the world, this could be a long winter so fill your freezers full of meat! Happy hunting and until next time!