Big Turkey Payday

by Robert

Karen sold so many turkeys this year that she left the van behind because only the pickup was big enough to take all those coolers full of fresh turkey to the farmer's market! This has never happened before. Everyone who had pre-ordered a turkey showed up, and that took care of every single turkey, so that went off splendidly.

We (and when I say "we," I mean Karen) raise old-fashioned Bourbon Red turkeys on pasture. The turkeys are in floorless pens that get moved to a fresh patch of grass twice a day. This gives the effect of free range without having the turkeys fly away into the woods, where they provide an early Thanksgiving for coyotes. I'm all for wildlife, but I think they should pay $6.00 a pound like everyone else.

A few potential problems loomed like storm clouds on the horizon, but then blew away. Our ice machine gave Karen some trouble a couple of times but not enough to interfere with production. A few turkeys got out of their pasture pens (yipe!) and needed to be herded back. Our water tank from our very slow wells got low as turkey butchering proceeded but we ended with a couple of hundred gallons to spare.

Customers were enthusiastic, and rightly so -- Karen's turkeys are the best! Because we sold every turkey we butchered, Karen found a 2009-vintage turkey at the bottom of the freezer and that's what we had. Delicious!

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