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Thread: meat processing question

  1. #1
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    Default meat processing question

    Trying to plan a moose hunt for 2009. If all goes well and we get a moose, if I were to take the meat to Indian Valley meats how long should I expect them to take cutting it all up for me. I would probably mainly just get a regular cut (steaks, chops, ground meat etc). I wasn't sure how much time to allow for leaving from hunting, getting meat processed then to flying home. If their turnaround time is really slow, is it ok to freeze meat in large pieces and fly them home then thaw it out to be cutup then refroze? Wasn't sure if refreezing the meat would hurt it. Any help on this would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Member Stogey's Avatar
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    Default Give Indian Valley A Call... 907-653-7511

    Seriously - I'd call them direct, they will be better able to help you with your concerns.

    Most importantly, they maybe able to suggest how to get the meat home in a slightly more economical way than via excess baggage.

    http://www.indianvalleymeats.com/game_processing.htm

    According to their web page turn time is a week to 10 days - I'm sure it depends how long you want them to age your moose. And of course, depends on the number of critters being brought in.

    I have froze meat, processed it, and put it back in the freezer. And I'm still alive. I'm not sure I would let the meat reach room temp.

    Good luck to ya!

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    every HIGH dollar steak you buy in the restaurant has been froze and thawed a few times before you get it... no big deal it looses a little more blood each time..
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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    Member markopolo50's Avatar
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    Default

    T Leo, I have shipped meat twice from Kenai, once deboned and frozen. We shipped it UPS. I partially thawed it when we got it home and sliced up. The next time we had it processed and shipped UPS again and I prefer the processed way. The way they pack it in styrofoam lined boxes it doesn't thaw all the way to Michigan. Not cheap but what is anymore. I was always worried about getting stuck in an airport and having the meat thaw out and ruin. By the way the first time I flew home was 9-17-01, thinking I may not even get home. We were out in the bush on 9-11, not knowing what the heck happened until we came out on 9-14. Pretty weird in Anchorage airport and all the way home.

    Mark

  5. #5
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    Default

    Inspected beef for USAF for over 20 years. Every time meat is frozen and rethawed it loses quality. The reason being ice crystals are formed very slowly and become jagged. Then when the meat is thawed it punctures the cell walls allowing them to leak.

    Remember all the "juice" you see in a package of meat you took out of the freezer and allowed to defrost in the sink?

    Blast freezing at very cold temperatures makes for smaller, more rounded ice crystals which decrease the moisture loss. Home freezers do not have the capability to blast freeze.

    Steaks in high end restaurant's are not refrozen several times before they are prepared. Most, if not all steak houses age there meat in house for a month or so under controlled conditions. Fresh beef is essentially vacuum sealed (called cryovac) as it is shipped around the country (if it is not still in quarters) and stored at temperatures close to freezing.

    Thumbs up on Indian Valley. But expects delays up to a month during the busy season and depending on what you have made.
    Tennessee

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    We just got ours back from IVM. We told them no hurry since we still had to eat some more space into our freezer. They got it back to us in about 2 weeks, and it is great! If you have a chance it is worth it to bone your quarters as you get charged by all processors per drop off weight. If you leave the leg bones in you are paying for their weight as well.

    Regarding the refreezing, my wife shot her moose and it was -10* so we took some very solid moose meat in. I actually left it frozen in the back of the truck for a couple days before taking it in. The thawed it, aged it, butchered and refroze it and it is great! So we basically did what you are talking about if you froze it and shipped it down to be butchered at home.

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowwolfe View Post
    Inspected beef for USAF for over 20 years.
    I think every NCO had to "inspect beef" at some point We always joked about meat gazing being a AFSC, funny to see there actually is a full time beef inspector

    Urine Analysis jokes aside very good information rep boosted!

  8. #8
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Default Turnaround time on processing at IVM

    Indian Valley Meats has an average turnaround time on processing of about two to three weeks. They can do it quicker on an expedite basis, but you have to work that out at the time you drop it off (and it depends on how busy they are). Naturally if they're full it could take a bit longer.

    -Mike
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    Member AK Troutbum's Avatar
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    Default Another option

    Quote Originally Posted by T.Leo View Post
    Trying to plan a moose hunt for 2009. If all goes well and we get a moose, if I were to take the meat to Indian Valley meats how long should I expect them to take cutting it all up for me. I would probably mainly just get a regular cut (steaks, chops, ground meat etc). I wasn't sure how much time to allow for leaving from hunting, getting meat processed then to flying home. If their turnaround time is really slow, is it ok to freeze meat in large pieces and fly them home then thaw it out to be cutup then refroze? Wasn't sure if refreezing the meat would hurt it. Any help on this would be appreciated.
    C&J Meats on International Airport Rd. by Central plumbing and heating took 3 days to process 2 moose for us this year. This was at the end of Sept. They cut; make burger, Italian sausage, and breakfast sausage, and commercially vacuum seal it all for $1.00/lb. They also did not charge me a boning fee or charge me for fat.

  10. #10

    Default

    Great information, I have always wondered about freezing, thawing and refreezing and now I know. One less worry while out in the field.

    Thanks

  11. #11
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    Default meat boxes

    Thanks to everyone for the great info. One other question. Where do you buy the meat boxes for shipping? And I understand the boxes are lined to prevent leaking but do you still have to wrap the meat in anything before putting it in the shipable meat boxes to help prevent any leakage?? Sorry for the questions but I have never had to worry about shipping any meat before.

  12. #12

    Default SW

    Sportsmans Warehouse always has a bunch of fish boxes, toward the back of the store just before you hit the back wall.

  13. #13

    Default Airport Rd?

    Central Plumbing? Is that in Anchorage? We'll be flying in & out of Fairbanks.

  14. #14
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    Default

    I've done it in the reverse, living in Alaska and elk hunting in the lower 48. I took my elk to a small processor who cut, processed, and packaged the meat, froze it, then shipped it to my door. I have to believe Indian Valley, Alaska Sausage, Glen's, etc can all do the same. It will arrive at your door frozen in freezer appropriate packaging.

    Heck, when I take a batch of meat to Alaska Sausage for grinding I pick it up packaged and frozen, assuming that's what I asked for. It makes my life much easier and their packaging is superior to what I can do even with a good vacuum machine.

  15. #15
    Member AK Troutbum's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Indian Summer View Post
    Central Plumbing? Is that in Anchorage? We'll be flying in & out of Fairbanks.
    Ya, C&J (next to Central Plumbing) is in Anchorage.

  16. #16

    Default

    So who would we want to use in Fairbanks? I've heard that
    Interior Alaska Fish Processors is a possibility. Anyone know if they process/ship moose?

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