The mobile slaughter unit we profiled in the Septembers edition of Western Skieswill be on hand tomorrow at Venetucci Farm for a demonstration of how this kind of small-time processing can connect consumers with the food they eat. Very few people in the US ever get the opportunity to have a literal ranch-to-table experience and we highly recommend this for those who want to have a more complete understanding of how their meat can be processed in a humane and healthy way on the land where it was raised by a person who lives in our community.

From the press release:

Instead of trucking livestock to processing, mobile slaughter allows the processing trailer to travel to the livestock, a concept that has potential to localize the food system while being more humane for the animals. See it for yourself: a mobile slaughter trailer will be at Venetucci Farm, Fri., Nov. 12 (south of Colorado Springs on the Fountain highway.) Demonstrations will be free and open to the public. Come out anytime from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Ranch Foods Direct will serve burgers for lunch.

And here’s our story on the mobile slaughter unit:


(image courtesy of the Nebraska Environmental Action Coalition)

For many ranchers, there’s little choice for where to sell your cattle if they want to control the distribution or sell the butchered meat themselves. KRCC’s Noel Black visited a ranch in northwestern Kansas near the Colorado border where a small group of people is taking small steps to change that. Warning to listeners, some of the sounds and descritions in this piece are graphic.

(right-click or option-click to download, or click the play button to stream)

Prototype Mobile Slaughter Unit’s Debut

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Postscript: Megan Pusey, Director of Communications for the National Cattleman’s Beef Association, an industry trade group, says the units are too new to make any substantive comment, but that their main concern is always to make sure safety parameters are ensured at this level as they would be at larger meat packing operations.

 

3 Responses to Ranch to Table at Venetucci Farm

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Kathya E., KRCC. KRCC said: Ranch to Table at Venetucci Farm: The mobile slaughter unit we profiled in the Septembers edition of Western S… http://bit.ly/cpPoOU [...]

  2. Lorraine Marie Arangno says:

    I would like to have more information about the actual “killing” of the animal. I would like to know what “knocked” means and if the animal is for all intents and purposes unaware of its impending doom.
    This new way of butchering the animal seems for all intents and purposes humane — but to determine this fully — one needs to know how the animal is treated prior to and up to its death.
    One more point needs to be raised — what safe guards will be put into place to ensure that animals continue to be treated with respect and consideration?

    All the Best
    L.M.Arangno
    UCCS

  3. Noel Black says:

    “Knocked” means shot with a bolt gun in the forehead. I’m told it’s one of the most humane ways to kill a cow, but I definitely recommend directing those questions to Mike Callicrate at Ranch Foods Direct. I’ve also been told that knocking the animal where it lives reduces the stress of travel and the fear that comes with being loaded onto a vehicle and taken to a processing plant where there are other stressed, hungry and dehydrated animals. My impression is that he’s made it his mission to see that the animals are treated with the utmost respect throughout their lives and the process. Having witnessed the process as a reporter, I’d say the fact that they’re so open about it and so careful to show and explain each step is a good sign. Processing one animal at a time, rather than in a factory setting where many are being killed and processed at once, is also big difference.

News

AP
May 27, 2015 | NPR · The rabbit was clubbed to death during a debate on animal cruelty. Radio24syv says it wanted a debate about the hypocrisy toward perceptions of cruelty toward animals. Critics aren’t buying it.
 

NPR/Christopher Groskopf
May 27, 2015 | NPR · Nebraska just repealed its death penalty. Here’s a look at where the law stands in your state.
 

NPR
May 27, 2015 | NPR · Even with cheap rent, the cost of doing business is high. With the nation’s highest commercial property taxes, one business mogul says this stunts entrepreneurship in a city that needs more jobs.
 

Arts & Life

May 27, 2015 | NPR · For this final round, every answer contains an article of clothing or wardrobe accessory. So if we said, “colorful wasps sometimes mistaken for bees,” the answer would be “yellow jackets.”
 

May 27, 2015 | NPR · We all remember Clint Eastwood’s character Dirty Harry and his famous line, “Go ahead, make my day.” In this game, contestants deliver that line… Ask Me Another-style. So go ahead, make our pâté.
 

May 27, 2015 | NPR · It’s hard to keep a good rock band together; you’re always losing members. In this game, we take the names of famous bands and drop a letter to make a whole new band.
 

Music

Courtesy Oscar Paz Suaznabar
May 27, 2015 | NPR · NPR’s Robert Siegel sits down with 9-year-old pianist, Oscar Paz Suaznabar, who has played at Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center and on the NPR show, From The Top.
 

Courtesy of the artist
May 27, 2015 | NPR · The titanic 85-year-old jazz saxophonist and composer says two much younger musicians had no right to release a recording with him.
 

May 27, 2015 | NPR · NPR’s Audie Cornish and Robert Siegel update listeners on our crowdsourcing music project, the All Things Considered Road Trip Playlist. NPR has received nearly 2,000 song suggestions, and on Wednesday shares some of the most literal picks — songs that are all about the feeling and adventure of hitting the road.
 

Get the KRCC iPhone App

The Writer's Almanac

Radiolab