Save Money: Buy Meat from a Local Farm

Do you and other members of your family love meat? Whether it’s burgers, steaks, ham, chicken, sausage, bacon, etc., quite a few of us have a regular hankering for meat. Naturally, when you head to the grocery store and look at the price of meat, you might shake your head and at least briefly contemplate going vegan.  So this article is going to show you how to save money when you buy meat from a local farm.

However, what if you didn’t have to face the sticker shock of highly-priced meat? Fortunately, there are some options, which we’ll talk about below.

You Can Buy Meat from a Local Farm

You might be surprised, but there are some fantastic local farms where you can buy meat. Sites online like provide lists of beef producers or will connect you with farmers raising poultry. Of course, you might also know a few local farmers that might be agreeable to working with you.

Consider talking with a family member or a friend regarding going in together for something like a side of beef or a whole hog. The two of you can split the cost, the farmers will raise the animal, slaughter it, and provide you with all the meat for your freezer. Why would you want to do this?

What are the Advantages?

Recognize the advantages. The cost is the biggest benefit, of course. It is far more cost-effective to buy meat from a local farm. Even though you might also be paying the farmer to butcher the meat, it is still cheaper. This is another reason to split the cost with someone else. It may make it easier to afford if you are still on the fence. Of course, you don’t have to go in on the cost with friends if you have a large and hungry immediate family.

The cost is not the only benefit. You will also find that the meat tends to taste better. A lot of the stuff bought at the store barely even tastes real any longer. Having fresh meat from an animal you’ve seen and can account for will taste much better than meat from a mystery animal. It tends to be cleaner and there is often much less stress on the animal.

There are some other benefits, too. You will be keeping money in your community, which is good for the area’s economy. It tends to be healthier, as well, since you won’t have to worry about pesticides, steroids, and other chemicals as you might with some of the options from larger brands.

Here’s a tip. Make sure you have a freezer large enough to hold all of the meat.  It’s better to have more than enough space than not enough. Having all of the meat in the freezer will give you some peace of mind. Yes, it’s nice knowing that there’s going to be plenty on the plate now and later.

Hunting and Raising Animals

Without a doubt, there are some other ways that you can get meat without going to the grocery store, as well. For example, you might decide that you want to raise some chickens or pigs on your property if you have the room. Just keep in mind that you will be the one responsible for taking care of the livestock, and you will have to handle the butchering or have someone who can do it for you. Otherwise, you’ll just end up with a lot of animals on your property, which is probably not what you want!

One of the other ways a lot of people supplement the meat in their freezer while keeping their grocery bills down is by hunting. There are plenty of tasty game animals around the state, and if you’re a hunter, you can enjoy a hobby while still cutting down on your costs.  My husband, Olin, hunts deer every year to supplement our freezer meat and prevent the overpopulation of deer in our area.  Deer meat is very lean and healthy.  My personal favorite is deer sausage that we make each year using a grinder and casings.

Think about all of the animals that make their home in the Tennessee area. You’ve got white-tailed deer, elk, turkey, and a host of other game birds. Plenty of animals should help keep your freezer filled with food this fall and winter. Hunting season only lasts for a period of time, so even if you are a hunter, it’s still wise to supplement with some meat from a local farm.

By all means, you must ensure you’re someone who likes to hunt first. If you haven’t gone before, please get some guidance before going. Have someone take you and show you the ropes. You will also want someone to teach you how to properly butcher the animal. Again, you could have someone do that for you. However, if you want to be truly sustainable and self-sufficient, it is something you will want to learn on your own.

Bartering for Meat

A third potential way to get some meat might be to barter with some of your neighbors who are into a sustainable lifestyle. If you have items that you grow or make that they might want, they could be willing to trade for them. Do you keep bees and jar honey, or perhaps spend your time growing vegetables or fruits?  Maybe you make soap, or you are willing to help pour concrete for their new driveway. If they raise and butcher animals, they may be willing to work with you if you have services or items they could use. You can find plenty of ways to barter for a range of items.

More than Just Meat You Can Buy from a Local Farm

Here’s something else you should keep in mind. You can get more than just meat from many of the local farms.

Start looking at the various farms in your area, both large and small, and see what other offerings they might have for things like veggies, mushrooms, herbs, spices, and the like. Sometimes, they will sell right from their farm. Other times, they might have a stall at a local farmer’s market. Get to know the farmers in your area.

To get a better idea of what you can find at farms in your area, make sure you visit This site will give you the information you need regarding all of the local farms in your area that are members, so you can see the sorts of offerings they have available.