Despite the attempt at intimidation by the above rooster, yes, we did brave the weather yesterday (30 degree temps) and process our last batch of broilers. What a healthy batch they were, too. Not a single loss in this batch. They didn’t dress out quite as pretty as a white chicken, but quite frankly a healthy, tasty, pastured chicken is far superior to a perfect factory farm bird.
We chose to begin our day a bit later due to the falling snow in the early morning. Maybe that was a good decision–or maybe not. The wind chill strengthened as the day lengthened. By the end of processing, the weather reportedly “felt like 27.” Really it was still in the 30s. Some numb fingers and toes were remedied with hot soup, cornbread and cookies at lunch and stuffed shells and apple pie at dinner. I told the family Friday as we were prepping the food, “We may be cold tomorrow, but we’ll eat well.”
Not liking the cold weather, the chicken plucker decided to function at partial speed just like the rest of us which added to a long day. We’ll have to figure out whether we need a new motor or whether we just have a Southern plucker that doesn’t want to come out and play in 30 degree temps.
All in all, the team did well. Some customers have high quality meat in their freezers or crock pots, and we have two jammed freezers….a definite blessing indeed!