So exactly what the hek is a Packing Company anyway?

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Shawn White

Sous Chef
Joined
Jan 5, 2005
Messages
791
Location
Calgary, Alberta
To me a modern meat packer is a medium to large commercial operation that does slaughter and provides packaged primal cuts and sub-primal cuts to various meat wholesalers and retailers.

Meat packers are the origin of mystery meats and specialty commercial meats .... hot dogs, bologna, boxes of frozen burger patties and so on due to the abundance of scraps. They are also a source of speciality meats like sliced, packaged side bacon because it just makes more sense for them to process it than for every store or grocery chain to do their own.

Some may also provide portioned or unportioned retail cuts 'eye of round roasts' for example.

In the case of the one I found, it is a company owned facility of a small chain that supplies several regional outlets. These guys also do retail on site and provide a few other services like custom butchering (take in your own cow or moose).

On Edit: Clarified post
 

Shawn White

Sous Chef
Joined
Jan 5, 2005
Messages
791
Location
Calgary, Alberta
In the town I grew up in there was an abbatoir. Live animals in the back door, full retail butcher service out the front door. They also did custom slaughter and processing on a per pound/item basis.

Got word they closed a couple of years ago. Perhaps they couldn't compete. It's too bad really, I used to get beautiful farm fresh chicken roasters and other wonderful, unique products from there. They even had their own smokehouse for sausage, deli meats, bacon, hams. :-(
 

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