Dear Heritage Foods Supporter,

Fall is a time for fattening up before the arrival of a long, sparse winter. Remember that we can help and below is a selection of our favorite winter specialties. Also a preview, for those of you who ordered a turkey this Thanksgiving, of the insert we will include in each box. Finally, the Animal Welfare Institute is sponsoring a Thanksgiving meal in partnership with the Food Bank For New York City's Community Kitchen of West Harlem, located at  252 West 116 Street, Manhattan.  The dinner will be served from 1:00-4:00 pm on Wednesday, November 26 for an estimated 700 low-income New Yorkers. David Schuttenberg, head chef at Cabrito will prepare dishes using drumsticks and wings from our very own Good Shepherd Turkey Ranch turkeys to demonstrate that it is possible to cook a healthy, nutritious and delicious meal on a budget using high-quality value cuts from humanely raised animals.

Maple brown sugar  hams, boneless (just heat and eat) (about 8lbs) - Slice thin for sandwiches or thick for main course.  - $98 shipping included

Maple brown sugar  hams, Bone-in (just heat and eat) (about 18lbs) - A perfect holiday meal centerpiece. - $140 shipping included

Boneless BBQ Riblettes – Two 2lb bags of a sweet delicacy: The 1 inch chunks of meat that are cut from the bone of a frecnhed pork rack, marinated in a secret BBQ sauce developed by Nick Fantasma. - $84 including shipping

Quarter hogs – 20% off
The best and cheapest way to fill the fridge and freezer with a season’s worth of sustainable protein. Get every cut of the pig cut and packaged separately. Choose between Berskhire, Red Wattle, Duroc and Tamworth.

Heritage Foods 2009 Calendar
This is a calendar that you won’t mind staring at for 12 months! Get one free with a purchase of $250 or more. - $14 shipping included

Ducks and geese are coming soon! Turkeys are selling out - order here if you haven’t already.

Have a great week!

Part of the Turkey Insert

Happy Thanksgiving! Thanks so very much for choosing a turkey from Good Shepherd Turkey Ranch and Heritage Foods USA.

Robert “Frank” Reese, a fourth generation farmer, who still resides on a 100-year, 160-acre farm on the prairies of Kansas, had the opportunity to preserve the knowledge and the bloodlines from heritage farmers of the early 1800s.  Frank has brought together a group of neighboring farmers to help him raise his birds. Each spring Frank sells his cherished poults to the members of his network. In this way, Frank has been able to significantly increase population counts of Heritage Turkeys. As a result, Frank has the oldest continual genetic strain of standard-bred turkeys in North America.

What is a Heritage Turkey?
- A true heritage turkey is reproduced and genetically maintained through self-breeding.
- A true heritage turkey has a long productive lifespan. Breeding hens are commonly productive for 8-9 years and breeding toms for 3-5 years.
- A true heritage turkey has a slower rate of growth. Today's heritage turkeys reach a marketable weight in 26-28 weeks (instead of the 14 weeks for commercial birds).
- A true heritage turkey lives a full life, engages in positive social interactions, mates naturally and performs instinctive behaviors essential to its health and wellbeing. Good Shepherd Turkey Ranch raise birds with genetics that can be traced to the 1800s.

Are Heritage Turkeys humanely raised and processed?
Good Shepherd was the first turkey farm in America to receive Animal Welfare Institute’s Animal Welfare Approved certification. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. says AWI is “The gold standard for how farm animals should be taken care of.” For more information on AWI standards visit: GSTR turkeys are never fed antibiotics or animal byproducts. GSTR worked closely with the abattoir to assure a clean processing.

Why is a Heritage Turkey more expensive than a commodity bird?
We prefer to answer this question with a question: how are commodity turkeys able to be so cheap? The price of a Heritage Turkey reflects the fair wage the farmers receive rewarding their resistance to the temptation to cut corners like raising birds indoors, cross-breeding for increased growth rate rather than taste, and feeding them antibiotics and animal byproducts. Instead, Good Shepherd Ranch Turkeys take 26 weeks to grow (rather than 14 weeks for industrial birds) and are the only birds whose lineage can be traced back to the 1800s. The birds mate naturally and are given 100% vegetarian feed with no antibiotics, GMOs or animal byproducts. Our farmers move them frequently to new, clean pastures.

How should I prepare and cook a Heritage Turkey?
Heritage turkeys are succulent and easy to prepare but beware not to overcook the bird. We recommend light preparations that allow the taste of the turkey to shine through. For recipes please visit our web site.

Heritage turkeys arrive very cold but not freezing, so do keep your turkey stored in the refrigerator until you're ready to cook it for Thanksgiving. Place it on a tray or in a pan to catch any juices that may leak. Remove the giblets and neck from the turkey cavity and cook separately. If the giblets or plastic wedge in the cavity is hard to remove, place the bird in a pot of cold water for a few minutes to help dislodge.
The United States Department of Agriculture states: “A whole turkey is safe when cooked to a minimum internal temperature of 165 °F as measured with a food thermometer. Check the internal temperature in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast.” The Chefs we work with around the country recommend a finished temperature of 10 degrees less. Marion Burros of The New York Times states that a Heritage Turkey is done when you cut into the meat and the juice runs clear. For quality, let the turkey stand for 20 minutes before carving to allow juices to set. The turkey will carve more easily as well.

Will I be able to know the breed?
It is possible to make a very educated guess. Check the very tiny number under the UPC barcode to determine farm and therefore probable breed...

A Press Release

October 28, 2008 

CONTACT:  Beth Hauptle
(703) 619-6496

Animal Welfare Approved Program Sponsors Thanksgiving Dinner
for 700 Low-income New Yorkers at the Food Bank for New York City

-- Chefs demonstrate how to prepare a nutritious, delicious meal on a budget using
value cuts from humanely raised heritage breed turkey--

New York, NY—Animal Welfare Approved is sponsoring a Thanksgiving meal in partnership with the Food Bank For New York City's Community Kitchen of West Harlem, located at  252 West 116 Street, Manhattan.  The dinner will be served from 1:00-4:00 pm on Wednesday, November 26 for
an estimated 700 low-income New Yorkers.

The meal will feature roasted heritage breed turkeys from Frank Reese's Good Shepherd Turkey Ranch in Lindsborg, KS. Chefs will also prepare dishes using drumsticks and wings from these birds to demonstrate that it is possible to cook a healthy, nutritious and delicious meal on a budget using high-quality value cuts from humanely raised animals. Leading the kitchen that day will be David Schuttenberg, head chef at Cabrito and Nate Gross, head chef at the Food Bank's Community Kitchen.

The kitchen will open at 6:00 am to allow time for the heritage birds to be slow roasted for the meal and for the fresh vegetables from Greenmarket farmers to be prepared.  A film crew from will tape the preparation of the meal for educational use, so that others can learn how to prepare value cuts from these slower-growing, pasture-raised birds 

Heritage turkeys were once critically endangered, but Frank Reese, a preeminent turkey expert, developed his Heritage Turkey Project in 2002--in partnership with Patrick Martins of Heritage Foods USA--to continue these lines, raising his turkeys under the Animal Welfare Approved program's high-welfare standards. Good Shepherd turkeys live their lives on pastures where they forage, graze and fly (behaviors that conventionally raised birds are not able to do).  Good Shepherd's turkeys have consistently been voted the best tasting bird on the market by chefs and food writers alike.

The New York Times' 2006 blind tasting, conducted by Marian Burros, confirmed that the white and dark meat "delivered the essence of old-fashioned turkeyness. The white was succulent; even the richer dark meat was tender."  Heritage Foods USA distributes Good Shepherd Turkeys in the USA.

"We are honored to work with the Food Bank during this holiday season and to partner with Good Shepherd, Heritage Foods,, Cabrito and Greenmarket, to prepare and share a meal that features meat from humanely raised turkeys and vegetables from sustainable family farms that sell their products at Greenmarkets across the city," remarked Animal Welfare Approved program director Andrew Gunther, formerly of Whole Foods Market. 

Gunther continued, “People are waking up to the truth about the way farm animals are raised, and better understand the confinement systems prevalent today. We are very proud that the Animal Welfare Approved food label has been noted for assuring consumers that animals have been raised with the 'most stringent' animal welfare standards available, according to the World Society for the Protection of Animals. We are the only program that prohibits confinement and dual production.”
Doors open at 1:00 pm on Wednesday, November 26 at the Food Bank For New York City's Community Kitchen of West Harlem, located at  252 West 116 Street, Manhattan.  Information at

#   #   #  

More Information About the Partners

Animal Welfare Approved,
The Animal Welfare Approved program and food label is the only farm animal welfare label and program that requires family ownership, prohibits confinement feeding operations, provides grants to farmers and is offered for free.  The program promotes the well-being of animals and the sustainability of humane family farms, uniting conscientious consumers with farmers who raise their animals with compassion. Animal Welfare Approved was recently lauded by the World Society for the Protection of Animals as having the highest animal welfare standards of all third-party certifiers.

Located in the heart of the West Village, Cabrito is serving up authentic Mexican fare, creative cocktails and an all around good time. The highly seasonal and superior product-driven menu, created by Chef David Schuttenberg, features house-made chorizo cemitas, pork belly tacos and huitlacoche huaraches.

Food Bank for New York City,
Food Bank For New York City recognizes 25 years as the city's major hunger-relief organization. Working to end food poverty and increase access to affordable, nutritious food for approximately 1.3 million low-income New Yorkers throughout the five boroughs, the Food Bank's initiatives focus on
direct services, food sourcing and distribution, education and nutrition, financial empowerment, disaster relief and policy and research.

Greenmarket promotes regional agriculture and ensures a continuing supply of fresh, local produce for New Yorkers. Greenmarket, a program of the Council on the Environment of New York City, has organized and managed open-air farmers markets in NYC since 1976, supporting farmers and preserving farmland for the future by providing regional small family farmers with opportunities to sell their fruits, vegetables and other farm products to New Yorkers.

Good Shepherd Turkey Ranch,
The Good Shepherd Turkey Ranch Inc. breeds and raises historically authentic heritage turkeys, grown free range, and vegetarian fed without antibiotics.  Only standard-bred turkeys—known as heritage birds—are guaranteed to have a normal skeletal structure, growth rate, metabolic system and lifespan.  The Ranch was the first turkey farm to receive the Animal Welfare Approved seal.

Heritage Foods USA,
Heritage Foods USA exists to promote genetic diversity, small family farms, and a fully traceable food supply. It is committed to making wholesome, delicious and sustainably produced heritage foods available to all Americans. Current projects include a new heritage radio station, a heritage film and a book on Slow Business.
Staci Strauss and Craig McCord are the people behind They are dedicated to making short films that tell the stories of the people who produce sustainable, humanely-raised food. Their new media company, Brand New Shoes, is based in Woodstock, New York.

Order now at

Heritage Foods USA
The Source for Authentic American Heritage Foods
Heritage Foods USA has been featured as a Company of the Year in Bon Appetit, House & Garden, Newsweek, Saveur Magazine and The New York Times Magazine.

Please use the following calendar as a reference when ordering our MEATS, POULTRY, FISH, NATIVE AMERICAN GRAINS AND OTHER DELICIOUS HERITAGE FOODS.
November 27 – Thanksgiving * December 21 – First Day of Winter
December 22 – Hanukkah * December 25 – Christmas
December 26 – Kwanzaa * January 1 - New Year’s Day
Contact us with questions or ideas, look out for weekly announcements and read new recipes, by visiting:

If you wish to be removed from our mailing list, please click here.

PO BOX 827
New York, NY 10150

Tel: 212-980-6603
Fax: 212-980-3332