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Restaurants, delis, schools, and caterers all need meat in bulk quantities to more efficiently serve their customers. They buy from wholesalers, and then the meat is sold at the retail level to customers within hotels, cafes, and anywhere else meat is sold. Steak, beef, chicken, and pork are all sold either raw, as in the case of butcher shops, or prepared, as in the case of restaurants.
Consumers can also buy meat such as prime rib, porterhouse steak, and free-range chicken at the supermarket. Recipes are available for download to cook the food the way you like it. Buy lots for entertaining a crowd, or just a small package to grill out in the summer with your spouse.
Meat doesn’t come cheap, though, so take advantage of your grocer’s sales on organic and standard meat cuts. You can buy dried meat like jerky, or focus on buying fresh meat for preparation that night at dinner. Whether you like gourmet cuts of beef such as filet mignon, or cheaper meat versions such as ground hamburger, you will find what you need at the butcher’s or grocery market.
Many retail meat providers offer condiments and accessories that you can use to cure and season the food, from poultry and strip steak to pork chops and sirloin. Prices ranges dramatically from cheap to expensive, depending on the cut and where you buy it. Retail prices are determined by type of meat and poundage, as well as if it’s organic or not. You can get steak, beef, and poultry already marinated and packaged, ready to throw on the grill and eat at your next barbecue. Or, you can buy meat frozen so it keeps until you need it, such as hamburger patties or chicken cutlets.
The retail meat market has changed a great deal in recent years. With the addition of free-range, organic and other specialty options, customers are greeted with a wider array of choices and prices at their local grocery stores, online retailers and butcher shops. Learning how to find meat shops that sell either gourmet cuts or more modestly priced fresh food options can improve the quality of one's cooking and the healthfulness of their food.
Poultry, beef, pork and chicken are available in a variety of cuts through most food stores, and most carry a selection of what were once considered specialty products like porterhouse steak, prime rib and filet mignon. Chopped sirloin, ground hamburger and strip steaks are also popular cuts of beef that are widely available. If looking for a specific type of meat, calling local shops and inquiring about their prices is a good way starting point. Customers should bear in mind that prices do change rapidly, so only call a few days in advance of a purchase.
Local source poultry and meat items are gaining in popularity. Often, chicken, ducks and other poultry options are available through local farms which may sell directly to consumers or work with local grocery stores for distribution. Such meats are made to be eaten fresh, and therefore should be purchased as close to the time that they will be used as possible. Online reviews will yield information on the qualify of this local meat, as will references from friends.
Not all meats have a short shelf-life. Cured pork options, like prosciutto, or jerky are meant to last, making them ideal for picnics or traveling. By expanding your range of shopping options and trying new recipes, you can sample new types of meat and enjoy the benefits of organic and free-range produce.