We have tried to address several of the most commonly asked questions here. If you don't find what you are looking for, please feel free to contact us.
How does on-farm USDA slaughter work?
With our on-farm slaughter program, we provide the USDA-compliant slaughterhouse-on-wheels under a lease arrangement, and you provide the labor and oversight of the USDA slaughter or cut-and-wrap operations. We help you get set up with USDA, which requires that you take a HACCP course (there are several online options available) and create a HACCP plan based on how you operate (we can help by providing a standard template) and then you lease the unit from us on the days you need to perform USDA-inspected operations. Our mobile slaughter comes as a 53' tractor trailer, so you need to make sure your farm can accommodate a full-sized semi-truck. You will also need a walk-in cooler for chilling, a tested water source, and facilities to properly restrain your animals for the initial kill (IE: for cattle, you'll need to restrain them in a headgate, and this area will need to be convenient to where the mobile slaughter unit will be parked). Once the animal is killed, it must be bled and winched into the unit for skinning, evisceration, and inspection. The carcass will then be transferred to your cooler for chilling.
What happens after slaughter?
Once the carcass has cooled it will need to be transported to a cut and wrap facility, or if you want to do your own cut-and-wrap, you can schedule for our unit to come back to your farm so you can transfer the carcass back on board and perform cut-and-wrap operations under USDA inspection. Cut-and-wrap can also be performed in a retail facility under the retail exemption, or under state inspection, depending on your state laws.
Where will the mobile slaughter unit operate?
Right now we will be going to farms across North and South Carolina, but we are looking for interested farms in Northern Georgia and Eastern Tennessee as well. The mobile slaughter unit will use Grassfat Farm in Hodges, SC as "base camp" - it will hang out here while it is idle or in between routes. We will schedule routes based on when farms are ready to slaughter, and the proximity of one farm to the next.
Can I slaughter poultry?
Yes! Our slaughter unit is set up so that you can obtain a USDA grant of inspection to slaughter poultry as well as red meat.
How much will it cost?
There is some up-front investment required, and you will pay each day the unit is at your farm, but the cost is less than 10% of what it would take to build your own inspected facility. Please contact us for further details.