Turkey Talk: Is Free Range Or Organic Worth It?

by in Thanksgiving, November 11, 2009

Herb-Roasted Turkey
My mom still tells the story about the year she ordered a free-range turkey. She almost choked when she went to pay for it because it was more than six times what a regular turkey cost! Now that I have Thanksgiving at my house, I’m faced with the same dilemma — is it worth it to get these extra pricey birds?

Get The Facts
The appeal of free-range turkeys is that they are raised with access to outdoor space so they can roam — many folks believe that this makes for better tasting meat. Farmers also raise these turkeys in a more human environment (no messy, cooped-up quarters), which wins extra points with food advocates. Add to that list the fact these turkeys get fed higher quality food and farmers don’t use hormones or antibiotics on them.

As for organic turkeys, they are certified as being raised following strict parameters (though they may not be free range) and are only fed organic food. Usually free-range birds are also organic, but make sure you ask your meat provider or read the store packaging carefully.

What About a “Local” And Other Labels?
Local poultry ranches are usually smaller operations and take more care in raising their animals. Many use free-range and organic practices (even if they aren’t certified organic). If you’re interested in keeping your feast local, call up the farmer to ask for details ahead of time.

Poultry also often has other labels such as “natural,” “grass-fed” or “no added hormones” — check out our eco-friendly label decoder to help make sense of these tags.

Ka-Ching!
Yes, these more specialized turkeys cost more — in many cases, A LOT more. We priced out options from various online grocery stores and the costs varied. Some turkeys were more than $10 per pound. Here’s what we found on average:

Regular turkey = $0.89-$2.99 per pound
Organic = $5.50-$6.20 per pound
Free Range = $4.59-$6.93 per pound

If getting a free-range or organic bird is important to you, you can save some money by picking a smaller size. Yes, this does mean fewer leftovers, but most people buy way more turkey than they need anyway. In this case, you’d be splurging on quality, not quantity.

What To Look For
Pay attention to the labels on fresh or frozen birds or ask your butcher or local farmer for more details. Free-range and organic turkeys are often in high demand; so if you choose to get one, you should order it now (if you haven’t already).

TELL US: What kind of turkey are you planning to get this year?

Similar Posts

Got Leftovers? Try These Creative Day-After-Thanksgiving Recipes

Rather than zapping Thanksgiving leftovers in the microwave, make scrumptiously creative day-after recipes instead....

Comments (741)

  1. Rex Sheidler says:

    Vous êtes si bon. Im là avec vous. Votre blog est certainement intéressant à lire si quelqu’un vient à travers elle. Im heureux que j’ai fait parce que maintenant Ive a reçu une toute nouvelle vision de cela. Je ne savais pas que cette question était si importante et si universelle. Vous avez certainement mettre les choses en perspective pour moi.

  2. Does your blog have a contact page? I’m having problems locating it but, I’d like to send you an email. I’ve got some recommendations for your blog you might be interested in hearing. Either way, great site and I look forward to seeing it grow over time.

  3. Ahaa, its nice dialogue on the topic of this post here at this webpage, I have read all that, so now me also commenting at this place.

  4. Thanks a lot for sharing this with all folks you actually understand what you’re talking approximately! Bookmarked. Please also visit my website =). We will have a link exchange contract among us!

  5. Wow! This blog looks just like my old one! It’s on a completely different subject but it has pretty much the same page layout and design. Excellent choice of colors!

  6. Attractive section of content. I just stumbled upon your weblog and in accession capital to assert that I get in fact enjoyed account your blog posts. Anyway I will be subscribing to your augment and even I achievement you access consistently fast.

  7. We’re a bunch of volunteers and opening a new scheme inside the community. Your site provided us with valuable information to paintings on. You have performed a formidable activity and our entire neighborhood might be grateful back.

  8. Hi, the whole thing is going well here and ofcourse every one is sharing information, that’s really fine, keep up writing.

  9. Your style is really unique compared to other people I’ve read stuff from. Many thanks for posting when you’ve got the opportunity, Guess I will just book mark this site.

  10. Excellent post. I was checking constantly this blog and I’m impressed! Very helpful info specifically the last part :) I care for such information a lot. I was looking for this particular information for a long time. Thank you and good luck.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>