There’s nothing quite as satisfying as sitting down to a home-cooked meal, and knowing that you harvested the wild game meat that takes the spotlight.
Not only does that satisfaction connect to the success you had pulling the trigger or releasing the arrow, but it multiplies tenfold when you do the extra work to field dress, process, and butcher the meat yourself, too.
If you still need convincing, here are five more good reasons you should start to process your own venison.
1. Save money
Have you seen the price of deer processing these days? Some places want more than $250 for a full sized animal, and it seems a little silly to pay so much for something you’re getting from the woods instead of the grocery store.
The investment in wild game processing equipment might seem a little steep, but once you consider how quickly it will pay for itself, there’s little to be concerned about.
2. Guarantee the quality
You don’t know where that beef or chicken has been before it reached your local market. Be assured that your protein comes from clean, safe sources and process it yourself, keeping an eye on things the entire way through.
Also, you’re ensuring that the meat you process is yours. There’s never a guarantee that you’re getting the same deer meat when you send it to a mass processor, which sort of defeats the purpose.
3. It’s healthy
There are no hormones or preservatives in wild game, and it’s low in fat compared to other typical meats. And organic? Yeah, this is as organic as it gets.
Plus, you can portion out future meals while you process it yourself. Whether you’re making sausage or cutting steaks, you can weigh out things to your exact specifications.
4. Learn from it
There are countless online videos and instructional materials showing you how to process your own game, but you can’t really get a feel for it without flat out trying. Experience is virtually the best way to further familiarize yourself with the animal you hunt.
What if you want to try a new collection of spices on your backstrap? Or your elk burgers needed more juiciness? Of your jerky from the processor was too spicy?
By starting and finishing the wild game process yourself, you’re able to use creativity and inspiration far beyond the limitations of a business operation looking to turn a profit.
Keep in mind that no one can become an instant expert at wild game processing, and the only real way to get better is to practice. But if you’re sending your deer to a processor every time, how are you ever going to improve?
Do what hunters were meant to do and take care of your own wild game. You’ll thank yourself each time you sit down to the dinner table.
Become your own butcher! Find Grinders, Mixers, Dehydrators, and other Food Processing Equipment at Sporsman’s Guide.