‘Reserve’ is the word for your holiday bird

Staff Reports • Updated Oct 31, 2017 at 11:15 PM

NASHVILLE – Most wish Thanksgiving promotions would hold off at least until summer is over. 

Anyone who wants a locally raised turkey on the table, however, there’s no time to spare. Farmers are taking reservations now for turkeys and other meats that are in high demand for the holidays.

A directory of farms that accept holiday meats and poultry reservations is available at Pick Tennessee Products, the farmer-to-consumer service provided by the Tennessee Department of Agriculture. 

“We will have turkeys available for Thanksgiving,” said Walter Bates with Hoe Hop Valley Farm in Benton, but he recommends pre-ordering his birds.

“We’re raising a small flock, about 25, of broad-breasted bronze Thanksgiving turkeys at Liberty Trace Farm,” said Kevin Krause from his farm in Hampshire. “We have several orders already and getting more daily from our existing customers.”

 Most Tennessee farms are small family farms, so herds and flocks are limited. Once flocks have matured and are ready to market, there’s no time to raise more to fill additional orders.

David Horwath with Katharos Farm offers both turkey and bone-in cured ham. The Maury County farm will also have special holiday combination packages to help customers plan their special gatherings through the entire holiday season. A number of farms offer special orders of meats that not only make meal planning easier, but also make excellent gifts.

Pick Tennessee lists hundreds of farmers, like Karen Overton with Wedge Oak Farm in Wilson County, who sells a variety of meats all year long, including beef, pork and poultry. Overton makes numerous artisan sausages and bacons, and sells large and specialty cuts of meat if they are pre-ordered.

Other farms that offer popular pre-ordered holiday meats, like rack of lamb, beef tenderloin and steaks in addition to Thanksgiving turkeys, include J&J Farm in Lexington, Pure Pasture Farms near Springfield and Glendale Farms in Williamson County. 

Find local farms and farmers markets with Pick Tennessee on the web and by mobile app. Follow Pick Tennessee on social media for information about seasonal farm fare and activities.

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