The Sunworks Blog

How we raise our Christmas Turkeys

All our turkeys, are certified organic, certified humane and are an heirloom breed called an Orlopp Bronze.

We receive our turkey chicks when they are less than 12 hours old straight from the hatchery. The first food and water that they receive is at our farm. They are placed in nice warm clean barns that have lots of water, feed, clean shavings and natural light.  They are given lots of room to grow, move and run around.img_1275-2

The feed that they receive throughout their life is Certified Organic and made from certified organic grains, organic legumes and organic minerals and vitamins. Certified organic feed means that all of the ingredients of the feed are certified organic, non GMO and have not been sprayed with herbicides or pesticides. No animal by-products, antibiotics, hormones, steroids, arsenic, or heavy metals are added to the feed.

Our Christmas turkeys are raised indoors in barns to ensure that they are protected from the cold Alberta winters. The barns have lots of windows to allow the natural light in and they are given lots of room to move around and are not caged or crowded. They are also kept clean and dry by using lots of wood shavings. Alfalfa pellets in their feed ensures that they get their greens daily. We follow the BCSPCA farm animal welfare guidelines and are inspected by them annually.

When they are big enough the birds are processed in our own government inspected poultry processing facility located right on the farm.

If you are interested in ordering a Christmas turkey there are two ways you can do so:

You can call Shae at the farm office 1-877-393-3133. If she is busy on another call or not in the office, please leave a message and she will call you back as soon as she can.

You can also place an order for your turkey at one of our market locations: Our stall at the Market on Macleod in Calgary; Our Meat Shop on Whyte Ave in Edmonton; and our stall at the Old Strathcona Farmers Market in Edmonton.

When you order, we take a $10 deposit per turkey, this reserves you a turkey but not a specific size. If you would like a specific size, we recommend that you arrive at your pickup location early in order to have the best selection of sizes available.

This years turkey pickup dates and locations are:

EARLY BIRD TURKEYS (order deadline is Dec 12 at noon):

Market on Macleod in Calgary on Dec 15th. 9am-5pm

Old Strathcona Farmers Market in Edmonton on Dec17th. 8am-1pm

MAIN TURKEY PICKUP (order deadline is Dec 20th at noon):

Strathcona Farmers Market Pickup Day will be Dec 24th from 7:30am-1pm

Our Meat Shop on Whyte (located in the Blush Lane Store) Pickup Day will be Dec 24th from 8am-6pm

Market on Macleod Pickup Day will be Dec 23rd from 9am to 5pm

Camrose turkey delivery / pickup day will be Dec 22nd from 6pm to 8pm.

New Camrose Location Opens Nov 18th!

Starting Nov 18th our meat will now be available 6 days a week at Vinesations Olive Oil and Vinegar in Downtown Camrose!

Vinesation’s is located at 4937 50 St in historic downtown Camrose. They are open Monday-Friday: 10am-6pm and Saturday:10am-5pm.

Our old location will no longer be in operation. If you have any questions, please call the farm office at 780-672-9799 or toll free 1-877-393-3133.

Organic Box will be contacting all their customers to let them know about new pickup arrangements for the Organic Boxes.

We would like to thank our Camrose customers for being patient with us as we have worked to find the best way for us to serve you in Camrose.

Thanks

Ron and Sheila

 

Christmas Turkeys

We are now taking orders for our Fresh, Certified Organic, Humanely Raised Christmas Turkeys! We raise a heritage breed called an Orlopp Bronze Turkey. Our Christmas turkeys are raised inside where they are protected from the cold winter weather. The barn has lots of windows to let in the sunshine and the turkeys are given lots of room to move around and express their natural behaviors. Their feed contains alfalfa so they continue to get grass in their diet.

This year we will be taking orders for early bird turkeys as well as for our main turkey pickup weekend. We will have limited amounts of turkeys this year and so recommend ordering as soon as possible.

You can order at any of our market locations or you can call the farm office at 1-877-393-3133. When you order your turkey, we take a $10 deposit that will be taken off the total price of the turkey at the time of pickup. This deposit reserves you a bird but not a specific size. You will pick the size of bird you would like from the sizes that are available at the time of pickup.

Early Bird Turkeys:

The order deadline for early bird turkeys is Dec 12th at noon or whenever we run out of early bird turkeys, whichever happens first.

Pickup locations for early birds are:

Market on Macleod in Calgary on Dec 15th. 9am-5pm

Old Strathcona Farmers Market in Edmonton on Dec17th. 8am-3pm

Main Turkey Pickup:

The order deadline for our main turkey pickup is Dec 20th at noon or when we run out of turkeys whichever happens first.

Pickup locations are at the:

Strathcona Farmers Market Pickup Day will be Dec 24th from 7:30am-1pm

Our Meat Shop on Whyte (located in the Blush Lane Store) Pickup Day will be Dec 24th from 8am-6pm

Market on Macleod Pickup Day will be Dec 23rd from 9am to 5pm

Camrose turkey delivery / pickup day will be Dec 22nd from 6pm to 8pm.

Cattle

img_9972-cropedOver the summer and well into the fall the cattle have been grazing on the fresh grass. The rain and snow we have had, has provided them with lots of grass but we have had to be extra careful that the very wet pasture did not get damaged by the cattle. We are careful of how many cattle we have on each piece of land at any given time in order to maintain an ecologically sustainable stocking rate. Now that winter is on its way we will start feeding them certified organic hay, certified organic alfalfa pellets (alfalfa grass that is harvested at its most nutritious and then dried and pressed into pellets) and organic minerals.img_9960-croped Windbreaks and chopped up organic straw will be provided to keep them warm and dry. Our cattle are healthy, happy, calm and content.

Turkey Cooking Instructions.

Since the farm office will be closed over Thanksgiving weekend. We thought that we would post the turkey cooking instructions that we hand out to customers at the markets in case there were any questions.

Our Turkeys are Orlopp Bronze turkeys. This is a Heritage Breed turkey that was developed by the Orlopp family back in 1935. Orlopp Bronze turkeys have a beautiful natural black feathering and thrive when raised outside. The meat is a very light caramel color and boasts a very rich, complex flavor.

You may notice on the skin of your turkey little spots that look like tiny ink spots. These are the pin feather holes and when some of the black pin feathers are removed a little bit of the black coloring can remain these are natural and are safe to eat.

Store your bird in your fridge at a temperature below 4 C until you are ready to prepare and cook it.

BEFORE YOU ROAST OR STUFF THE TURKEY MAKE SURE THAT YOU HAVE REMOVED THE PLASTIC BAG OF ORGANS THAT ARE IN THE CAVITY OR NECK OF THE BIRD.

Our birds will cook faster than a conventional bird.

Based on our turkey cooking experience an unstuffed 15lb turkey cooks in 3 hours at 375F, a 20 lb unstuffed turkey cooks in 4 hours at 375F. When it is done remove from the oven cover it loosely with foil and let it rest for 15-20 min so that the natural juices are locked in.

There are many factors that can affect how fast your turkey cooks including your oven, pan, and preparation. One way to know if your turkey is cooked is to take the temperature of the bird in the thickest part of the thigh without touching the bone. The meat thermometer should read 170 F.

Happy Thanksgiving!