Whole- and Part-Animal Sales

We prefer to sell our beef, pork, and lamb directly to you. You can purchase beef by the quarter, half, or whole; pork by the half or whole; and lamb whole. Unless you buy the whole animal, you must reserve a space on a waiting list until all shares are accounted for.

While this is the least expensive way to purchase our meat, and the only way to get offal like liver and hearts, you do have to work a little harder for it. You will need to send us payment in advance — including the slaughter fee — and to coordinate with the local butcher shop as to exactly how you want it processed into cuts. Please read all of the following information carefully before you make a reservation via this form

AVAILABILITY

Beef: Our beef are mostly Scottish Highland crosses. By crossing our Highland bull with our conventional-breed mother cows, we produce a smaller, more grass-efficient grazing animals that thrive on the seasonal pastures and have a wonderful flavor. We harvest them at around 18-24 months, which produces tender beef at a manageable size for the home freezer. Our beef is harvested seasonally, coinciding with the onset of our lush spring grasses and continuing until October.

Pork: We harvest our hogs throughout the year, but more of them in the summer and fall. (We reduce our production in winter to allow our wet pastures to grow without the wear of a large number of pigs, which can be hard on the vulnerability of the winter pastures.) Suckling pigs are usually available year round, but we need at least 3 weeks notice before you need it.

Lamb: Usually spring and summer only.

PRICES

Pricing can be a little confusing. When you buy a whole- or part-animal, you pay the farm for the hung weight of the animal PLUS the harvest fee for the USDA slaughterhouse ($145 for beef, includes saving the offal; $135 for a whole hog) and you ALSO must pay the butcher for his cut-and-wrap fee (just went up to $0.92 per lb, plus extra for sausages and curing).   

Lastly, the “hung weight” is what we charge for, but the actual net take-home weight will be less, after the carcass has been trimmed, with bones and fat removed. (Another incentive for you to find a way to use your bones and fat!) There is also normal shrinkage that occurs with the beef dry-aging process. With beef the average difference between hung and net is around 28%, and with pork it is approximately 15%.

Beef

  • Split quarters average 100-150 lbs and sell for  $5.50/lb.
  • Halves average 200-300 lb. and sell for $5.50/lb.
  • Whole beef comes in at 400-600 lbs and sells for $5.00/lb.

So, for example, the total price you would pay for a 100-lb quarter beef, including the harvest and butcher fees, comes out to approximately $787: your payment to the farm for the beef ($550) and the harvest fee ($145), and $92 to the butcher for cut & wrap. A 400-lb whole beef would total $2,513 ($2000 + $145 + $368). Depending on how you had it cut, you would probably be taking home around 300 lbs.

How much freezer space does a quarter beef take? Just under 2 – 3 cubic feet. The standard cuts yielded by a quarter beef would be: 25 lbs ground beef, 18 lbs roasts, 18 lbs steaks, 4 lbs stew, 2 lbs short ribs, 4 lbs brisket, and 5 lbs soup bones.

Pork

  • Half hogs average 75-125 lbs and sell for $5.25/lb.
  • Whole hogs average 150-250 lbs and sell for $5.00/lb.

So, for example, the total price you would pay for a small, 75-lb half-hog, including the harvest and butcher fees, comes out to approximately $531: your payment to the farm for the pork ($394) and the harvest fee ($68), and $69 to the butcher for cut and wrap.

How much freezer space for a half hog? 2-3 cubic feet, depending on size of half. You would get approximately:  15 lbs chops, 5 lbs shoulder roasts, 5 lbs butt roasts, 8 lbs ham, 3 lbs spare ribs, 8 lbs ground pork/sausage, 8 lbs bacon, 8 lbs ham hocks, 4 lbs neck bones. 

Lamb

Lambs are 40 to 75 lbs and cost $9.00/lb. hung. The harvest fee is $50, which in this case is paid to the farm. We do not sell half-lambs, but it’s easy to split one with a friend. Bud’s still charges $1.29/lb for cut and wrap on lamb.

Suckling pigs

Suckling pig sizes and prices are 15-20lbs, $165; 21-25 lbs, $175; 26-30 lbs, $185; 30-35 lbs, $195; and so on up, plus $70-90 for harvest. They are delivered whole (but without entrails). A 25-lb-er is about as big as fits in a regular oven. Suckling pigs must be picked up from the farm. With advance notice we can sometimes arrange to have them fresh, not frozen.

THE PROCESS 

  1. You place your order through our form for say, a half-beef, and tell us when ideally you would like it. (If you’re not ordering a whole, you have to wait until we’ve sold the rest of the animal.)
  2. You must submit a deposit of $125, either via PayPal or by mailing a check, before we send your animal to the slaughterhouse.
  3. We see that a steer or a hog is ready for harvest — ie, the right age and size, looking nice and fat. We schedule it with the slaughterhouse.
  4. We notify you that “your” beef/hog/lamb will be slaughtered on X date, and will then go to Bud’s Custom Meats, the local butcher shop that our slaughterhouse delivers to.
  5. We give Bud’s your name and phone number. They will call you for cutting instructions. (More about that below.) You *must* call them back promptly, or call ahead and fill out a cutting instructions card before the carcass arrives.
  6. The farm invoices you for the hung weight and the slaughterhouse fee, minus your $125 deposit; you pay the balance via PayPal or check
  7. The beef will dry-age for 14 days at Bud’s for best flavor and then be cut. Once it is cut, the butcher will call you to come and pick up. They freeze it immediately, but they will not store it for you for more than a few days.
  8. When you pick up, you pay Bud’s their cut-and-wrap fee separately.

CUTTING INSTRUCTIONS

Our butcher: Bud’s Custom Meats, 7750 Petaluma Hill Rd, Penngrove, CA 94951
(707) 795-8402, Mon-Sat 8 am – 5 pm

If you order a quarter beef, you get a standard cut, which Bud’s will explain to you.

If you order a half-or whole-animal, you get to choose how much you want ground, or whether you want tenderloin instead of chops, etc. Good Meat: The Complete Guide to Sourcing and Cooking Sustainable Meat by Deborah Krasner has an excellent guide for walking you through the decision tree.

We will post the main choices here soon, along with our favorite cookbook list, those with great recipes for some of the less common cuts.

READY TO RESERVE AN ANIMAL?

  1. To pay your $125 deposit via PayPal, click here, or by mail a check to Liz Cunninghame, Clark Summit Farm, P.O. Box 105, Tomales, CA 94971.
  2. Please fill out our whole-animal reservation form, and Liz will be in touch via email within a few days to discuss availability.

Questions? Email orders@clarksummitfarm.com