Talk­ing Lo­cal Turkey

Catron Courier - - Front Page - By Shan­non Don­nelly

There are few things bet­ter dru­ing the hol­i­days than a great meal. This year why not both eat lo­cal, and eat healthy. Her­itage turkey or or­ganic chick­ens can be pur­chased from Pollo Real in So­corro, NM.

Since 1996, when Pollo Real be­came the first cer­ti­fied or­ganic poul­try farm in the United States, the farm has been New Mex­ico’s pre­mier pas­tured poul­try pro­duc­ers. In ad­di­tion to her­itage tur­keys, they pro­duce French La­bel Rouge Chicken, Cor­nish Cross Chick­ens. Their her­itage turkey breeds in­clude: Bour­bon Reds, Broad-breasted, Span­ish Black, Slate, New Hol­lands, and Nar­ra­gansett.

The ben­e­fit is not just a great-tast­ing bird, it’s a health­ier meal. Ac­cord­ing to the EPA, 90-95% of all pes­ti­cide residues are found in meat and dairy prod­ucts, and con­ven­tional an­i­mal feed is among the most heav­ily sprayed crops. This means pes­ti­cides and drug residues are con­cen­trated in an­i­mal fat. Sal­mo­nella out­breaks have also be­come a com­mon is­sue in many chicken prod­ucts that come from fac­tory -farm poul­try.

Pollo Real pre­vents th­ese prob­lems by mov­ing their poul­try on a daily ba­sis in portable pens through fields planted with chicory, mil­let, wheat­grass and bras­si­cas. In ad­di­tion the birds' di­ets are sup­ple­mented with whole­some grains. There are no pes­ti­cides used, no meat by -prod­ucts are fed to the poul­try, they don’t use an­tibi­otics or drugs, growth en­hancers or hor­mones. A whole bird chicken can be had for as lit­tle as $4.25/lb

At Pollo Real, chick­ens are also har­vested right on the farm. This elim­i­nates long-

dis­tance haul­ing, so there is no un­due stress or in­jury to the birds. The farm has a USDA in­spected pro­cess­ing fa­cil­ity, and they of­fer chicken that can be kept fresh for over two weeks.

To con­tact Pollo Real, visit pol­lo­real.com or email pol­lo­real@q.com. Pollo Real is reg­u­larly at the Santa Fe Farmer’s mar­ket.

If you’re look­ing for a change of pace, also con­sider or­der­ing lo­cal lamb that’s sus­tain­ably raised.

Dun­hill Ranch near Mag­dalena of­fers all-nat­u­ral, grass­fed lamb raised with­out an­tibi­otics, hor­mones or chem­i­cals. Lamb can be bought pack­aged by the pound, or by the whole or half lamb.

Lambs are typ­i­cally avail­able from Au­gust through Novem­ber, but they are of­ten sold out be­fore Christ­mas. Lambs can also be re­served year round.

Dun­hill Ranch lambs can be or­dered on­line, they do lo­cal de­liv­ery, or can be picked up from the farm. For more in­for­ma­tion visit dun­hill­ranch.com, call 575-854-2847 or email sales@dun­hill­ranch.com.

Also, don’t for­get that many lo­cal ranch­ers raise Black An­gus beef. While it’s too late this year to get an or­der in for a roast for the hol­i­days, think about go­ing in with neigh­bors to or­der a half or whole cow to fill your freezer with lo­cal, grass-fed beef. The cost for beef per pound is much less than what you’ll pay for in a gro­cery store, and the taste can’t be beat.

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