By Marianna Spence, CFSA Membership Coordinator
A local, pasture-raised Thanksgiving turkey is a wonderful way to honor the tradition of the season – celebrating bounty, harvest, friends and family. In addition to being given lives on pasture, the turkeys you’ll find from CFSA Member Farms in this list are also nutritionally better for you. Pastured birds eat grasses and legumes that contain Vitamin A and omega-3 fatty acids, nutrients that are known to reduce cholesterol. Pastured birds also have more access to adequate space, fresh air, sunshine, and exercise, and thus maintain better physical health than confined birds. With more exercise, birds maintain a lower fat content, which is healthier for the bird and the consumer (Source: https://rodaleinstitute.org/establishing-a-small-scale-sustainable-pastured-poultry-operation/).
What good things – time outdoors, good feed and pasture, sunshine, or humane processing – could possibly have been given to a turkey sold at a big box grocery store for as low as $0.47/pound? Not much, unfortunately. So use your Thanksgiving feast as an affirmation of your commitment to sustainable agriculture or as a good excuse to start a new tradition!
Check out this list we’ve put together of fifteen CFSA Member farms raising turkeys for the holidays. You’ll find contact information, details on how to order, and a description of their turkey production practices. If you don’t see a farm close to you, you can expand your search by talking to farmers at your local market or asking your favorite farm-to-table restaurant where they source poultry. A quick chat with the farmer or perusal of their website should inform you that their production practices align with your values.
Gobble, gobble! (Tip: Our regions are large! If you don’t see anything in your region, check an adjacent region.)
Against the Grain, Holly Whitesides
Location: Zionville, NC
Preferred contact: email@example.com
How to order: Sign up through home page of website or through facebook page link. We take reservations with a $25 deposit, while availability lasts.
Farming practices: We raise our turkeys on pasture and with GMO-free feed. We move them to fresh pasture every 2 days, ensuring fresh forage and humane living conditions for the birds. We offer both contemporary and heritage breeds, for pick up either at the Watauga County Farmer’s Market or at the farm.
Charlotte Metro NC
Lazy Heron Farm, Holt Akers-Campbell and Hailey Sowden
Location: Norwood, NC
Website: www.lazyheronfarm.com, www.facebook.com/lazyheronfarm
Preferred contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or (615) 727-3640
How to order: Email and place your order!
Farming practices: Pasture-raised broad-breasted white turkey moved 3X daily. Non GMO-feed.
Fern Creek Farm, Jon Meader
Location: Creedmoor, NC
Website: https://ferncreekfarmnc.com, www.facebook.com/FernCreekFarmNC
Preferred contact: email@example.com (secondary contact by phone, Rosie Pyle is our customer care contact at 919-741-8973)
How to order: Email us with your name and contact number to reserve your whole, fresh Thanksgiving turkey. We require a $25 non-refundable deposit within 7 days of making your reservation. The deposit can be paid by credit card over the phone, or mail a check to the farm address above. We will take reservations until Nov. 10, 2017, if space is available. Turkeys will be processed the weekend before Thanksgiving and we will arrange delivery or pick-up with our customers before Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2017.
Farming practices: Our turkeys are free-range and raised in a large, wooded area on our farm where they can forage on wild plant material and insects. They are also fed high-quality, all-grain feed that does not contain medications or animal by-products. We do not give any antibiotics or any type of medication to our poultry.
Cypress Hall Farms, Robert Elliott
Location: Louisburg, NC
Website: www.cypresshallfarms.com, www.facebook.com/cypresshallfarms
Preferred contact: Cypresshallfarms@gmail.com
How to order: https://squareup.com/store/cypress-hall-farms/item/turkey-deposit-1
Farming practices: Cypress Hall Farms raises free-range heritage turkeys in our pastures. These turkeys are hatched, grown, and processed here on the farm and are available for pick-up only during the week of Thanksgiving. Sizes are first come first served so reserve early!
Dawnbreaker Farms, Ben Grimes
Location: Hurdle Mills, NC
Website: www.dawnbreakerfarms.com, www.
Preferred contact: ben@dawnbreakerfarms.
How to order: Reservations can be made online here (https://form.jotform.us/
Farming practices: Dawnbreaker Farms raises pasture-raised, GMO Free Thanksgiving Turkeys. Our flock of non-GMO Broad Breasted White turkeys are rotated to fresh pasture weekly where they graze, hunt grasshoppers and bask in the glorious fall sun. A Dawnbreaker Farms turkey is a centerpiece with a story to tell and a flavor that will be remembered well after the guests return home.
ChickCharney Farm, Julie Gauthier
Location: Wake Forest, NC
Preferred contact: Email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by text to 919-830-7940
How to order: Taking orders at Wake Forest Farmer’s market, online at http://www.chickcharneyfarm.com/, email to email@example.com or by text to 919-830-7940
Farming practices: We raise turkeys a very old-fashioned way. All stages of the cycle occur here at the farm – from the day our turkey hens lay eggs to the bird on our holiday table. Our rare heritage breed Beltsville small white turkeys and Narragansett turkeys are raised full-time on pasture, and they are fed a locally grown diet containing heirloom (non-GMO) varieties of grain. We process the turkeys at the farm, and customers can pick their bird up fresh at the farm by appointment in time for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or other special occasion.
Homestead Harvest Farm, Jan Campbell
Location: Wake Forest, NC
Website: http://www.homesteadharvestfarm.com/ www.facebook.com/Homestead-Harvest-Farm-248088267269/
Preferred contact: email firstname.lastname@example.org or call/text 919-608-2502
How to order: Email, call or sign up at the Midtown Farmer’s Market on Saturdays 8-Noon or at the Carrboro Farmer’s Market on Wednesdays 3-6pm. We take a $20 deposit to hold the reservation with the balance due upon delivery. We have 8-16 pound birds and usually sell out by mid October
Farming practices: Homestead Harvest Farm raises free-range Bourbon Red turkeys. We use Non-GMO grains for extra protein and harvest on site the day before delivery. Our delivery dates are Nov. 18th in Raleigh and Nov. 21st in Carrboro with pickup from the farm available on Nov. 22nd.
Ninja Cow Farm, Dan Moore
Location: Garner, NC
Preferred contact: Email or text to email@example.com or 919-810-2530
How to order: We take deposits in store only. Here is a link to our turkey announcement. http://
Farming practices: The turkeys are pasture-raised, no-GMO feed. They come from Brittany Ridge Farm, who provides rabbit and chicken to Vivian Howard of A Chef’s Life. We are a retail outlet for Brittany Ridge, one of our partner farms.
CATHIS Farm, David Pflugfelder
Location: Lillington, NC
Preferred contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
How to order: Send an email asking to order a turkey and we will reply with an invoice for the deposit
Farming practices: We raise broad-breasted whites from day old poults for 15 weeks. They are all rotated weekly on pastures of millet and buckwheat and are fed a certified organic feed grown locally in North Carolina.
Fickle Creek Farm, Ben Rickard, Bryan Horton, and Noah Ranells
Location: Efland, NC
Website: http://www.ficklecreekfarm.com https://www.facebook.com/Fickle-Creek-Farm-169913859892/
Preferred contact: Order form
How to order: Kindly use online order form at bit.ly/2017fcfturkey. Turkeys are sold on a first come, first served basis using our online order form. A $50 deposit is required to reserve a turkey. The order form is updated if we are sold out or if turkey parts (breast, wings, thighs, drums, backs, and livers) are available.
Farming practices: We raise Broad Breasted White turkeys on pasture. They are fed only a vegetarian feed and processed at an animal welfare approved processing facility.
Reverence Farms, Suzanne Nelson
Location: Saxapahaw, NC
Preferred contact: Email email@example.com
How to order: There is an option this year to choose a fresh or frozen turkey. Both are processed within the month of November, we are just looking to add a larger pick-up window. Frozen birds are $6.99/lb and fresh are $7.99/lb. Pick-up for fresh turkeys will be Saturday, November 18th from 12pm – 4pm at our farm: 2301 Austin Quarter Rd.
Saxapahaw, NC 27253. If you requested a frozen bird, you can pick-up at Reverence Farms Café (6956 NC-87, Graham, NC 27253) starting November 14th during regular business hours, Tuesday-Saturday 8am-8pm. Or if you are part of our Mobile Farm Store delivery service, your bird can be delivered on our November delivery day of Thursday the 16th.
Farming practices: Reverence Farms is a thriving polyculture where animals are treated with reverence and grace and all critters eat a species-appropriate diet. The hens follow our dairy cows and sheep with the pigs in a rotation that regenerates the land and provides the best nutrition for all animals.
Fort Clux Farm, Rebecca Larkin-Martinez & Tom Martinez
Location: Castalia, NC
Website: https://www.facebook.com/fortclux/, http://www.fortclux.com
Preferred contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
How to order: Place a non-refundable $25 deposit at https://squareup.com/store/fort-clux, choosing your preferred size. Pick up a fresh turkey the weekend before the holiday and pay the balance (= market price x weight – deposit) for the turkey.
Farming practices: We raise free-range laying chickens, turkeys, Katahdin/Dorper sheep and bees. We supplement their grazing, when necessary, with locally grown hay and non-GMO feed, grown and milled locally. All our animals range during the day and return to a more protected space at night. Additionally, we have guardian dogs who help alleviate predator issues.
Up On Cedar Knoll Farm, Jackie Cavallin & Steve Acuff
Location: Blythewood, SC
Preferred contact: email@example.com or 803-240-6512
How to order: Reservation is by receipt of $20 deposit. Let us know by phone or email desired weight range and if preferred frozen or fresh chilled ($8/pound). Reservations are currently being accepted and open until all reserved. Harvest dates for 2017 will be Nov 4th (for frozen) and Nov 18th (fresh chilled). Pick up on farm only, no shipping. Balance due at pickup, cash or local check.
Farming practices: Heritage Bourbon Red Turkeys. We are NPIP, SC Small Flock Certified and also DHEC licensed for on farm processing. We raise our birds cage-free on wooded pastures. Average weights for Bourbon Reds after processing are 7-11 pounds for young hens, 11-20+ pounds for young Toms, each will vary. Smaller to mid range weight birds reserve out quickly!
Five Forks Sustainable Farm, Lisa and Taylor Rees
Location: Pageland, SC
Preferred contact: Email to firstname.lastname@example.org
How to order: Prefer email or personal message on Facebook to order turkeys, letting us know approximate desired weight. Price is $4/lb, with pickup at Union County Farmers market or at the farm. Can deliver with small delivery charge.
Farming practices:We are raising a small flock of 30 Broad Breasted Bronze and White turkeys on pasture with supplemental feed. Order early for best selection of desired weight.
Pee Dee SC
Maypop Farm, David White
Location: Darlington, SC
How to order: Visit email@example.com, or our website at www.freerangechicken.com, or you can also order turkeys through the Ovis Hill Farmers Market, http://www.ovishillfarm.com
Farming practices: Free range on pasture managed without chemicals, fed no antibiotics or growth promotants.
Fili-West Farms, Nathan Boggs
Location: Vance, SC
Website: https://www.facebook.com/filiwestfarms, www.filiwestfarms.com
Preferred contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
How to order: Pay turkey deposits and order online at https://www.mkt.com/filiwestfarms/turkey-deposit. Please note what size turkey you’d like in the “Notes” section, $5/lb. We will take orders through Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017, or until we run out of inventory.
Farming practices: We offer fresh pasture-raised broad breasted white turkeys for Thanksgiving. All of our birds are moved to fresh grass daily in order to keep both the birds and the pasture clean and healthy. Fresh air, sunshine, forage, and a high quality un-medicated feed from Bartlett Milling all conspire to make this the best turkey you’ll ever eat!