Unlike in the past, this year all of our Thanksgiving turkey options will be available for pre-order, so you can rest assured that you’ll get your bird! Pre-orders start on Sunday, November 1st and run through Thursday, November 19th. Pick up your pre-ordered bird anytime between Friday, November 20th and Thanksgiving Day (November 26th). To make a pre-order, stop by or call the Customer Service desk at either store.
Not the planning type? We will have open stock turkeys available starting Friday, November 20th. We can’t guarantee exact types of sizes, but we’ll do our best to satisfy your needs!
A turkey article this year wouldn’t be complete without a word about the avian flu epidemic that hit many midwestern poultry farms this year. Though many turkey farmers lost all of their birds to the disease, our farmers were lucky, and none of them were affected. It’s hard to say if that’s because our turkeys generally have a more humane, healthy life, but it certainly didn’t hurt anything. As John Peterson from Ferndale Market put it:
“We can’t know for sure how our free-range practices may impact our susceptibility, but we’re trusting that sunshine and low density are the best preventative medicine. That said, this is a nasty virus that doesn’t necessarily follow any of the traditional rules, so no farm of any shape, size, or location is immune.”
Though they didn’t lose any birds, the two small local and regional farms that we work with were affected in another way: because so many birds were lost nationally, the supply of poults (baby turkeys) was limited this year, and so our supply of grownup turkeys is likewise limited. Luckily, we were able to source plenty of Bell & Evans turkeys to make up the difference, so we’ll be sure to have one for you!
Now for the fun part—which turkey will you choose?
Lange Farms 100% Local Organic Pastured Turkeys
Rich Lange in Platteville, Wisconsin, locally raises these certified organic birds. We’ve worked with Rich for years, and we’re particularly excited by this offering since it represents the first time we’ve partnered directly with a local farmer to raise Thanksgiving turkeys specifically for Willy Street Co-op customers.
Because Rich wasn’t able to get the amount of poults that he had hoped, we will only have about half of the number of birds from this farm as we had asked for. For this reason, we highly recommend pre-ordering if you want to make sure you get one.
Ferndale Market All Natural Pastured Turkeys
Though these turkeys aren’t technically local, they’re from just over the state line in Cannon Falls, Minnesota. Ferndale Market is a family-run farm, dedicated to raising sustainable, pastured, antibiotic free, humane, and super tasty turkeys.
Similarly to Lange Farms, Ferndale Market has a limited supply of turkeys this year, mostly because of the smaller than normal supply of poults available to them. We’ll have plenty for pre-order, but pre-ordering early will ensure you get your preferred size.
Bell & Evans
This year we’re offering both Certified Organic and All Natural Bell & Evans Turkeys. Both types are raised on family farms in Pennsylvania under humane conditions with no antibiotics, hormones, or other “junk” in their feed. These turkeys are air-chilled, which means there’s less water weight and more flavor in each bite!
To make up for the limited supply of Ferndale and Lange Farms turkeys, we ordered a few more Bell & Evans turkeys to ensure everyone who wants one gets one!