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Bird is the word! How and where to source local turkeys for Thanksgiving

Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Pexels

It’s almost turkey time and high time to order your local turkeys to ensure you’ve got the best to serve for Thanksgiving dinner.

Eating local and supporting our local farmers has never been easier with new home delivery services in place. Ever had a local, farm raised, FRESH turkey? Nothing compares to the taste and the texture and for me, peace of mind (picture happy turkeys gobbling around a green grass farm).

Did you know that many of those bargain turkey and chickens you buy have been injected with a water solution? It’s called plumping and what it does is make you pay more as the weight is increased. Plus, who knows what is in that water solution – yuck. You can check to make sure that no solution is added because they have to include that on the label. However, this is yet another reason to shop local and know your farmer – then there is no need to investigate the quality of your food.

Everyone is busy and many don’t enjoy the shopping part of cooking like I actually do. Thankfully there are businesses like Dolan Home Delivery in place to help. This Salmon Arm based delivery service brings fresh from the farm products right to your door. Tim Dolan started Dolan Home Delivery in Revelstoke many years ago and expanded into offering delivery to Vernon and Kelowna in 2015.

Dolan Home Delivery brings farm products and dairy to your door!
Dolan Home Delivery brings farm products and dairy to your door!
Image Credit: Dolan Home Delivery

All of the farms sourced for their meat and birds, milk and dairy, eggs, are from family farms that treat their animals humanely and many are organic. All you have to do is set up an account and then if you are not home at delivery time, simply leave a cooler and voila, a larder stocked with the best local farm products will be waiting when you get home — easy-peasy. Like an old school milkman, you can have fresh milk in glass bottles delivered from D Dutchman Dairy.

Turkey farmer Mike Hamblett
Turkey farmer Mike Hamblett's local birds are available for pre-order

I just received an email update from Dolan announcing that they are taking orders for fresh turkey from Mike Hamblett from Hamblett Farms for Thanksgiving. Mike is a regular at the Kelowna Farmers & Crafters Market and he specializes in raising turkeys at his farm in the Spallumcheen Valley between Vernon and Armstrong. Mike's birds are raised out of doors and Mike says they are “feeding our own fresh forage and local grains without any hormones, antibiotics, medication or growth stimulants”.  Turkeys $4.50/lb (turkeys average between 15lbs – 20lbs and FRESH (not frozen) can be delivered to your door by Dolan.

Happy turkeys raised at Fresh Valley Farms
Happy turkeys raised at Fresh Valley Farms
Image Credit: Facebook/FreshValleyFarms

Another solution for easy local shopping is to sign up with Fresh Valley Farms. Nestled against a mountain backdrop in Spallumcheen, B.C., Fresh Valley Farms is a two quarter-section-farm owned and run by the Meggait family. This family farm produces hay, grain, calves, piglets, beef, pork, and chicken using all natural, regenerative systems. They offer all grass-fed beef and pasture raised chickens and pigs to their customers. On their website you can order a wide range of products from sausages to steaks and handy themed Boxes that offer a range of items. And they have Thanksgiving Turkeys. They just require a $20 deposit online to reserve a bird. They will be processed Friday October 11th and available for pickup at their farm that afternoon or the next day, October 12th, in Kelowna at Urban Harvest- 806 Crowley Avenue.

Urban Harvest Organic Delivery team at their warehouse/shop at 806 Crowley Avenue in Kelowna
Urban Harvest Organic Delivery team at their warehouse/shop at 806 Crowley Avenue in Kelowna
Image Credit: Katie Nugent Photography

Speaking of Urban Harvest, this is one of the pioneer home delivery services in the Okanagan. Urban Harvest Okanagan Delivery serves the Central Okanagan (West Kelowna -Lake Country) and was founded by David Nelson and Lisa McIntosh in 2000. These lovely people feature organic produce and source from a long list of local farmers and artisans from across the Okanagan. Delivery is once a week (example: Regular Harvest Box is designed to feed 2-4 people for one week. The Family Harvest Box will feed 4-6 people, or more, depending on appetites). Or you can visit their warehouse for the Saturday Sale. Each Saturday, from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m., they host an informal sale for produce left from weekly home deliveries at reduced prices. So, this is where you can get all of your Thanksgiving veg.

Or you can stop in at your local butcher shop like L & D Meats in Guisachan Village in Kelowna to inquire about local turkeys. I noticed they had their sign out now to order your local turkeys (fresh or frozen). Their birds come from Hallmark Farms in Abbotsford. 250-717-1997.

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