After 5 years in Balgowlah Heights, the local butcher shop that you know and love is changing it’s name to Millin’s Free Range Butcher!
It’s a very exciting time for the whole team and I. The fact is, we’ve always sold free range meats because we believe in it and when we first started out, the decision to support 100% free range was simple — it’s better for all of us in so many ways.
From a young age I was taught where meat comes from, animals leading a happy stress-free, natural life before their next phase when they are turned into the protein on our plates. Growing up in New Zealand there were many lush green paddocks with animals happily living the “free range” life, plenty of fresh air, plenty of space and plenty of green grass to nibble on whenever they liked.
It never fazed me, and I never thought about it much until I heard the other way in which they can be farmed — the aggressive feedlots that pump the animals full of grain, antibiotics and growth hormones. These days, in Australia, this is now even more prevalent with the export market picking up and the unnatural conveyor belt having to push harder and harder to keep up with demand.
Grain is a product that gives beef extra weight and tenderness through intramuscular fat, but is a product that cows were not supposed to eat as their immune and digestive systems find it hard to process grain. In America after World War II there was an excess amount of corn (grain) produced, so they fed this to the cattle. It put weight on the cattle so much quicker and put money in the pockets of the big guys. This created so many health issues with the cattle that they had to be continually pumped with antibiotics, which is no good for them — or us!
In Australia we’ve been much luckier, with a rich history in traditional farming and dedicated farmers who have over time, all together put Australia on the map as the best meat in the world. Maybe this is something we have taken for granted — I know I struggle to find a good steak when we venture overseas — a nice juicy, grass fed Aussie steak is always the first meal we have on our return!
With all this said, at Millin’s we made it our goal to scope out the best free range farmers in Australia who could continually stock us with proper free range meat year round. These farmers are practicing free range farming for all the right reasons.
Barrington Beef, from the Barrington Tops in northern NSW provide our grass-fed beef. By buying grass-fed, we’re ensuring that our beef is as free range as it comes as well as it being beef that is packed full of goodness, with a high amount of omega 3 acids, lower in calories and higher in nutrients than grain-fed.
Breakout River Meats at Cowra supply our lamb daily and Borrowdale supply our free range pork. These farmers aren’t on a conveyor belt of pushing numbers through —the animals are in pristine areas with plenty of room to roam and graze.
By supporting free range farmers, we are supporting happier, healthier animals, which gives the power back to us and lets us enjoy meat that is packed with all the right nutrients we should be having in our daily diets. By supporting your local butcher, we’re all able to keep supporting these guys doing the right job and steer away from the dollar turning conveyor belt that is aggressive farming practices.
Over the last 5 years, customers have asked us whether our meat was free range. At first we thought a simple sign on the wall would help, but since free range meat has always been what we believe in, with this name change, we are now making it clear to all:
Millin’s Free Range Butcher proudly supports and sells only free range meat and has everyone’s best interests at heart.
Since nothing’s really changing, our prices won’t rise any more than they would with usual market fluctuations, and of course you can still always expect the best quality and same superior service you’ve come to rely on from us.
Just to really impress, we’re also really excited to launched this brand new website and online shopping experience. Please feel free to have a look around, test it out, give us any feedback you can and share us around with your friends.
I’m really looking forward to sharing this next chapter of our journey with you and look forward to seeing you in the shop soon!