Seasonality in Meat

Seasonality in Meat

Meat in Season

I’m sure you know about seasonal fruit and veg: pumpkins are best in autumn and winter, berries in summer, and lemons and apples varieties are available year round. Due to the globalisation of the food market and import/exports, many of the off-season fruit and vegetables are coming across the ocean from other countries. For example, many of the punnets of blueberries in store right now are “products of the USA” where the temperature and conditions are suitable for berry growing. Those out of season fruits and vegs which do come from Australia are more expensive and less nutritious, often going off faster and containing more pesticides, chemicals and preservatives. 

For those of us who are in the know, seasonal fruit and vegetables are the way to go in terms of sustainability, nutrition and cost efficiency, but did you know the same can be said for meat? 

Seasonal meat is not quite the same as your classic fruit and veg, but the time of the year still plays a part in the sustainable meat industry. Eating meat "in season" means consuming meats that are naturally available and at their peak quality during specific times of the year. Animals have their own breeding and growth cycles influenced by changes in climate, temperature, and food availability. Bears, for example, who are hibernating in winter do not breed, eat and exercise to create delicious full-bodied muscle meats. Okay, so we don’t eat bears, but the principle is the same for other animals. Wild birds most often breed and feed in early spring, meaning that duck, geese and wild poultry will taste best and retain the most nutrition when they’re young and well-fed. Us Australians enjoy prawns around Christmas because the summer temperatures are ideal for breeding and migration. This is true of all wild meat produce, including Australian kangaroos, seafood and poultry.

So what about farmed meat like pigs, cows and lamb? While these animals would get adequate food, care and shelter year-round, they are still impacted by weather, food availability and breeding. The food grass-fed animals eat are impacted by the seasons, and their bodies’ stress levels are also dependent on the cold, extreme heat, excessive rain or droughts. When animals breed naturally, there is more availability in the appropriate months.

Seasonality may affect the quality of meat depending on the way the farmer’s choose to raise their animals. All of our farmer friends at Sunshine Coast Organic Meats do their best to meet the needs of their animals on a seasonal basis, ensuring a great quality of life and quality of product.

Even with the hard work of our great farmers, you might find yourself eating seasonally based on culture and availability anyway! The best thing about eating seasonally is that it is as easy and delicious with our huge range of available products. There’s always something year-round to enjoy so you never have to sacrifice on the foods you love.

Everybody loves to eat soft, tender and sweet fish in summer when they’re available, to throw on the barbecue and enjoy with a delicious side salad. We like to eat lamb in spring and enjoy tougher, heartier meat cuts in winter to break down in long-braising stews. Anything that you’re looking for is available here at Sunshine Coast Organic Meats — Australia’s largest organic meat butcher. 

For something seasonal and delicious, try Butter Chicken, paired with our NEW and delicious Jones Rd Pinot Noir. That’s right, find sauces, seasonings, dairy products, eggs, kitchen staples AND wine at Sunshine Coast Organic Meats.