When you want to buy meat, you have two choices available to you: supermarket meat, or butchers meat. People tend to assume there is little difference between the two in terms of quality, but that buying meat from a supermarket is both more convenient and cheaper.
This isn’t necessarily true. In fact, butchers meat is often far superior in quality, and can be just as affordable and easy to get a hold of as meat from a supermarket. Here are just a few reasons why you should start getting your meat from a butchers instead of a supermarket.
Butchers know their meat, and more importantly, they care about it too. While supermarkets leave pre-cut, pre-packaged meat on display until somebody decides to buy them, butchers will prepare the meat in front of you just the way you like it, offering only the very best cuts.
It’s also much easier to find out the origins of the meat at your local butchers shop. Packaging on supermarket meat isn’t always clear about whether the meat comes from grass-fed free-range animals, or caged animals raised a carbohydrate-rich grain diet. A butcher will be able to share this information with you if you care to ask (it will almost always be the former), whereas the same cannot be said of every supermarket worker.
There are certain types and cuts of meat you can safely assume will be stocked at your local supermarket: popular choices like chicken breast and thigh, pork chops and beef burgers. But if you want something less commonplace, it’s best to go to a professional butcher.
Butchers specialise in providing a diverse selection of meat to their customers. Looking for game, goat or goose? Ask a butcher. Trying to get your hands on beef tongue, pork liver or bone marrow? Ask a butcher. Getting your meat from a butchers shop means you can more easily expand your dietary horizons.
Support local businesses
There’s always a lot of talk about the death of the high street, and if you want to support local businesses, visiting a nearby butchers shop is a good place to start. You’ll be giving your hard-earned money to a small, local business rather than a national grocery chain, and spending it on meat that is locally sourced.
Supermarket workers are lovely, hard-working people deserving of respect, but they see hundreds, if not thousands of faces every day, so they can’t be expected to build relationships with all their customers.
Buying your meat locally allows you to build a relationship with your butcher, which means they can share their professional expertise with you if you’re not sure which cut you need, or how best to prepare it.
We tend to think of supermarkets as cheap, but actually their meat is often just as expensive as the produce from a butcher.
Butchers will be able to make suggestions on your order, offering alternative cuts that could save you money without sacrificing flavour. They also run regular sales and offers on certain produce, and since their meat is of the highest quality, you get much more for your money.
Lastly, just as supermarkets provide online shopping options, the same is true of many butchers.
If you’re thinking, ‘but there aren’t any butchers near me‘, fear not. Companies like the Dorset Meat Company deliver high quality, 100% grass fed free range meat direct to your front door at a day and time to suit you. They have a wide range of produce, from pork sausages to venison steaks, all of which are sourced from local, family-run farms in Dorset and Wiltshire, and prepared by master butchers.
Getting quality butchers meat to your dinner table has never been so easy.