Where to Find Heritage, Free-Range, and Organic Turkeys

Heritage TurkeyThanksgiving is right around the corner. Do you know where your turkey is? If you haven’t already ordered a bird, there may still be time to get one that’s organic and/or locally-raised.

The advantages of ordering a non-commercial bird are plentiful: If it’s certified organic, you can rest assured that it wasn’t injected with antibiotics and has been fed organic feed.

Other types of birds–including free-range and pasturized–weren’t confined to cages or subjected to inhumane living conditions.

There are also Heritage turkeys, which are the ancestors of the common broad-breasted white industrial breed of turkey that account for almost all of the supermarket turkeys sold today. They dine on fresh grass and insects and lead relatively long, happy lives.

By buying a free-range, organic, or Heritage turkey, you’re not only getting a better bird, you’re supporting small local farmers.

Ready to order? Here are some local farms and shops where you can find a splendid turkey to be the centerpiece of your Thanksgiving celebration:

Ayshire Farm: Organic

Cibola Farms: Pasture-raised and heritage

Eastern Market: Locally raised

Let’s Meat on the Avenue: Free-range

Maple Lawn Farm: Free-range

MOMs Organic: Local free-range and organic free-range

Whole Foods: Organic and heritage, depending on location

YES! Organic: Organic and free-range, depending on location

Does the idea of a tough bird fill you with dread? To make sure your turkey turns out moist and tasty, consider brining it. Here’s an apple-brined turkey with herbs recipe from the Washington Post. Your friends and family will, um, gobble, gobble it up.

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