Buying in bulk is big business. Raise your hand if you love Costco or Sam’s Club!!!! I have a membership to Costco and I love taking the time every couple of months to stock up on my family’s favorites. Buying in bulk not only saves me money but it saves me time. Although I still make weekly trips to the grocery store to stock up on fresh fruits and veggies, I try to plan ahead and stock up on our pantry staples every 2 months.
Buying beef in bulk is kind of the same thing. Your freezer becomes like a grocery store and instead of making the trek to town ( for me it is a 20-minute drive to the nearest Meijer or Kroger), I just run to my freezer and decide what we will have for dinner. The options are almost limitless and if you like trying unique cuts of meat, buying in bulk might just be for you. There are many reasons people prefer to buy beef in bulk and I cover a couple reasons here in this blog.
Most people buy in bulk because they prefer to support small family farms. Not every farmer has the ability to piece out different cuts of meat like we do. So many who choose to support small farmers started buying their beef in bulk. Once you have been used to a freezer full of meat, it’s hard to go back. I grew up on a farm and I can say that meat is one thing we never lacked. My mom was very creative and even when we didn’t have a lot of money for other things she was always creating delicious lunches and dinners using meats from our freezer. For my own family, I just like the ease of taking out something the night before. I have a couple freezers because I do a lot of canning. Two of my freezers are out in our barn. I try to do a weekly meal plan but on the days that meal planning didn’t work out, I usually just run out after evening chores and grab something to defrost overnight. That way it’s ready the next day for the crockpot, instant pot or grill.
A lot of people also choose to buy in bulk because they love the variety. There are so many different meat cuts that you might not normally try if they weren’t sitting in your freezer, staring at you every time you open the door. Everyone loves steaks and roasts and even the ground beef but what about Beef Short Ribs or Shanks? Brisket? Oxtail, anyone? Unique cuts like these can be challenging and exciting. With the amazing world of the internet and wonderful food bloggers, there are a host of recipes for the most obscure cuts. Buying in bulk you have the opportunity to make the most out of these cuts, whether you keep them and cook them, or whether you have them deboned and added to your other ground meat. The choice is yours.
I would have to say that saving money is the biggest factor when someone decides to buy beef in bulk rather than by the piece. An example of this would be our Half Beef Bundle, you save at least $390 by buying the half beef bundle versus buying all the different meat cuts separately. That’s almost $400 in savings! We did things a little different with our bulk beef and that is to turn them into bundles to keep the price and meat cuts more uniformed. On average, a half a beef is about 340 lbs hanging weight. Hanging weight is the weight of the beef once it has been put down with the head and entrails removed prior to weighing. The hanging weight is usually the weight that butchers and farmers go off of when selling beef in bulk. It is not the finished amount of meat in your freezer. Typically you will receive 60-70% of the hanging weight in finished meat cuts in your freezer. When you break it down mathematically, you will be paying between $5.88/lb – $6.86/lb which is a huge savings! This price represents all the different cuts of the beef. You just won’t find a grass-fed beef steak for under $7.00/lb anywhere! But this is what it looks like financially when you buy your beef in bulk!
All our bulk beef bundles are delivered frozen, so it is ready to be placed in your freezer. In order to keep our meat the freshest, we wrap everything with high quality white waxed freezer paper. We have chosen freezer paper over vacuum sealed on these bundles to avoid the seals breaking during transit. Broken seals only cause freezer burn to the meat. Because buying in bulk is a big investment it is our job as your farmer and butcher to make sure your meat stays good until the last piece is cooked. White freezer paper just gets the job done better than vacuum sealing every time. I had some steaks get lost in my freezers black hole only to show up almost 2 years later. I decided to test it out and see if it was still good. As the meat thawed there was not a speck of freezer burn, the steaks turned bright red again once they had access to oxygen and they were delicious! Now, I don’t recommend buying enough meat to last 2 years in your freezer, that would just be silly. But I want you to know that because of our packaging if something does get lost, it will still be good.
Beef Flank Steaks
We do something a little different in regards to our quarter beef bundles. Many farmers and butchers will sell beef by the quarter, but you usually have to choose the front quarter or the hindquarter. The front quarter consists of cuts like chuck eye steaks, chuck roasts, ribeye steaks, short ribs, and soup bones. The hindquarter consists of ground beef, top and bottom round, the short loin which includes porterhouse and t-bone steaks, flank steak and rump roasts. Choosing just the front or hind quarter will leave you wanting other beef cuts. But here at John Henry’s, our quarters consist of both the front and hindquarters. We actually take a half beef and divide that in half again. This gives you a little bit of everything. Our customers really appreciate that especially when they want all the meat cuts of a half beef, but just can’t eat that much.
Buying in bulk definitely has its positive points. If you find yourself eating a lot of beef, this might just be the next step for you! We offer a lot of customization options in our bulk beef bundles. We can cut roasts to different weights, cut steaks to different thicknesses, add meat to the grinds that you aren’t going to use. We can even make patties out of some of the ground beef. Just contact us to discuss your many options.
Thank you for supporting our farm.