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To not want to buy meat from butchers

35 replies

etoiledemer · 15/09/2015 20:13

I buy some meat from supermarkets and some from butchers but I always feel the latter has a really short shelf life and that I'm being sold the stuff that's about to go off.

For example, I bought a chicken on Sunday which we ate on Sunday and that was fine but I also bought sausages for the kids' tea tonight and they smelled slightly off today when I went to cook them today. Of course, the butcher told me they would have five or six days left in them.

I hate having to smell meat to find out if it's good enough to eat and think use by dates are a much better way of working out how long meat will last.

By the way, my butcher is reputable, award winning and all that guff but still completely untrustworthy IMO.

OP posts:

treaclesoda · 15/09/2015 20:16

I find the opposite actually, that the meat from my butcher is much fresher than the stuff from the supermarket.


lljkk · 15/09/2015 20:17

Well... food isn't really supposed to have a long shelf life. Supermarket stuff gets treated differently,vacuum packed & more disinfectants involved.

Fine to buy it where it suits you best.


Happfeet2911 · 15/09/2015 20:19

Sorry, I much prefer using my nose to find out if something is edible, those ridiculous use by dates are totally ignored by me anyway, how did we survive before them! They even put 'use by' on tinned food, total rubbish.


KitingOverThePains · 15/09/2015 20:20

Can't you just stick stuff in the freezer until you want to eat it? I think it's a good thing it goes off quicker, it shows it probably has been interfered with less than supermarket food.


etoiledemer · 15/09/2015 20:20

Hmm, disinfectants doesn't sound great. Maybe somewhere like Waitrose butcher's counter where they put a nice sticker on it and are subjected to greater scrutiny is a good compromise. I know less meat is another good option but my kids are hard enough to feed without taking meat out of the equation.

OP posts:

Buttercup27 · 15/09/2015 20:21

Our butchers meat is really fresh - the abattoir is next door.


x2boys · 15/09/2015 20:23

I buy all my meat from the market I find it much nicer and fresher but I generally freeze it straight away.


BrandNewAndImproved · 15/09/2015 20:25

Butcher meat is better as it's not got loads of preservatives in. They take out the oxygen in the packs of meat from supermarkets to keep it ok for longer.

I second the freezer suggestion. All my meat goes straight in the freezer apart from roast chickens. Defrost in the microwave and your ready to go although sausages I would just bang straight in the oven on a lower temp for longer.


Sirzy · 15/09/2015 20:26

Shop wherever you want.

Personally I think the quality of meat from the butchers is much better, if I am not using any meat for the next couple of days I will freeze it until I need it though.


treaclesoda · 15/09/2015 20:29

My butcher prints a nice wee use by sticker on each item when he's packaging up the meat for me. And it is specific to each item, so it's not as if everything I buy on one particular day has the same use by date. I think he keeps a pretty close eye on what's coming into and out of his shop. Mind you, the shop is queued out the door most of the time, he probably couldn't keep stuff long enough for it to go off.


ShouldHavenotOf · 15/09/2015 20:32

I feel slightly more virtuous if I buy meat from the local butcher even though it smells of blood in there.


wasonthelist · 15/09/2015 20:39

YABU to tar all butchers with the same brush. I rue the closure of my local butcher - the food (mostly meat, but also cheeses and eggs) was fresher and much tastier than anything obtainable in any local supermarket.

I have noticed a trend in local butchers closing - that was the last one in our small town, so it may not be long before supermarkets have shut them all - like fishmongers, greengrocers etc.


pilates · 15/09/2015 20:47

Strongly disagree. The meat is much fresher and tastier at my local butchers.


etoiledemer · 15/09/2015 20:50

Our freezer is quite small but we might be getting a new one soon in which case I will definitely buy in bulk and freeze. In the meantime, I will try to buy from the butcher when I can but the supermarket and their use-by dates definitely helps my food planning.

OP posts:

Verbena37 · 15/09/2015 20:55

We're not badly off but there is no way we can afford to buy all of our meat from a butcher. It's so expensive to feed a family of four. My dad is a butcher and says so many people come into the shop and spend between £70-100 no probs every week!


sproketmx · 15/09/2015 21:18

Supermarket stuff has so many preservatives in it. That's why it keeps so long


ouryve · 15/09/2015 21:24

Including all supermarket meat, sproke?

Yes, some is injected with fillers, but most comes as is. It tends to keep longer because it's in a protective atmosphere which delays oxidation and microorganism growth, which is why it does go off, once opened.

I actually wish we did have a local butcher. I might pick the odd item up from the farmers' market or farm shops but we have to travel a few miles to those, which tends to offset any sort of brownie points for responsibility, unless we're going that way, anyhow.


treaclesoda · 15/09/2015 21:27

£70 to £100 per week? Just on meat? Shock That is a lot of money, to me anyway! Although presumably not for some people or they wouldn't be doing it.


PurpleDaisies · 15/09/2015 21:32

I'm really surprised your meat from the butchers isn't better than the supermarket meat. I've always found a huge difference in quality (in favour of the butcher) and it usually works out cheaper too.

The wonder of capitalism means you are free to buy your meat from wherever you choose. I personally like supporting the little guy but do what suits you best.


WyrdByrd · 15/09/2015 21:33

We have just discovered our local meat 'market' (kind of like a butchers cash and carry0. It's absolutely brilliant - we got a 33 chicken breasts for £20 and they also had a tray of 4 beef roasting joints for £20, and 3 trays of marinated chicken portions for a tenner.

The quality is so much better than the supermarket too.

OP - a bigger freezer and bulk buying is definitely the way to go


Qwebec · 15/09/2015 21:34

Talk to your butcher about your concerns, I'm sure you can ask him to add a expiration date on your packaging.


AlpacaPicnic · 15/09/2015 21:37

I bloody love our local butcher - they do a 'meat for a week' pack which is a chicken, two chicken breasts, 6 sausages, some mince, some bacon and two pork chops for 20 pounds. It lasts DH and I a couple of weeks to be honest!

I just wish they had a late night opening... I can only get there once in a blue moon.


bigTillyMint · 15/09/2015 21:40

Our butchers is great - way better quality and longer-lasting than the supermarket. They do a family pack like yours too, Alpaca.


AngelDog · 15/09/2015 21:49

I did a comparison between the amount of cooked meat I got from butcher's chicken vs supermarket chicken. The butcher's chicken was about 50% more expensive than the supermarket on the uncooked £/kg. After cooking and weighing what was left, the butcher's chicken worked out considerably cheaper than the supermarket equivalent. I've spoken to a few people about this, who've all said that you'd expect to see an even bigger price difference with something like mince.

Plus I get free bones to make stock, dripping and even more meat (there's always plenty left on it). I couldn't afford to buy supermarket meat!

I don't like what I've read about how supermarkets treat their meat to give it a long shelf-life. Our butcher doesn't put BBE dates, but I freeze everything when I get it home and cook at leisure.


Discopanda · 15/09/2015 21:50

I don't eat meat myself but when I do sometimes get meat I buy it from the local butcher because ours is an ethical one and doesn't have fillers like most supermarket meat.

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