Let’s talk turkey! Before making your purchase of a brightly packaged bird it is important to know where your food comes from and all the people involved in the process. A few months ago, I pulled on my rubber boats and trekked out to Island Bison Ranch to tell you the story behind their farm. Today I’ll introduce you to Rossdown Farms and Natural Foods in Abbotsford. Full disclosure - I thought I was heading to their turkey farm but it ended up being their processing plant, which opened my eyes to the production of poultry.
Rossdown Farms and Natural Foods is tucked away in British Columbia’s fertile Fraser Valley. They are fourth generation poultry farmers who take pride in being involved in every step of the farming process giving them more control of the health and quality of their animals.
Life of a Turkey
Young turkeys are sent off to their oasis on a farm in Keremeos, in the heart of the Similkameen Valley, just three and a half hours from Vancouver. The turkeys are free range, where they are allowed to roam freely indoors and out. The farm not only has turkey-sized playgrounds for the turkeys to enjoy their time on, but it also features barns with windows, so these birds get to experience natural light even in the colder months.
When it is time for the turkeys to be harvested, they are transported to a processing plant in a heated truck. Just like the rest of the turkeys’ life, the harvesting process follows Certified Humane Standards. Waste is minimal at the processing plant as leftovers turn into a pate-like paste for use in dog food.
When buying your holiday bird this year take comfort in the fact that you are enjoying a turkey that lived a stress-free life, fed non-GMO grain, never any animal by-products and was raised without antibiotics. Nutritionally speaking, turkey is a great source of protein and a good source of immune strengthening zinc and energizing iron.
As you sit down to feast with family and friends this holiday season, don’t forget to take a moment to be grateful for this animal and the food on your plate and remember how important it is to support farms that are doing everything right.
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This article can be found on stands until December 31st, 2017 at any Choices Markets