Farm News


How Much of a Good Thing

One question that is constantly asked of our farm managers is “how much of a certain product should we order”? The question is a tricky one because of the diversity of peoples and families eating styles. Whole families or just one member may not like certain products, others may eat certain types of foods due to healthier lifestyle choices, cook times, ease of preparation, storage facilities, and one of the most important factors is how we ate when we were children. The world health organization lists Canadians as high meat eaters (between 200 – 220 lbs. / year / person). Out of 200 lbs. the average person eats 70 lbs. of poultry, 110 lbs. of red meat, and 15 lbs. of fish per year.

This would mean that a family of four, which included two teenagers, could expect to eat 280 lbs. of free ranged chicken in a year. This hypothetical family could eat fryers, which are typically 5 lbs. each, and they would need 56 to feed the family for a whole year. This family could 28 purchase capons, which average at 10 lbs. each to feed the family. The typical goose weighs in at 8 lbs. and the average duck is 4 lbs. This family could order 25 fryers 8 roasters 5 capons 5 ducks and 2 turkeys and 2 geese to get the required 280 lbs. In addition some meats such as turkey are traditionally eaten during holidays.

The same family of four could be expected to eat 450 lbs. of red meat in the same time period. Typical red meat consumption would normally consist of; grass fed beef, heritage pork, veal, and organic lamb and for some people goat or venison. A family of four may consider an order of ½ beef 1 pig and 1 lamb, which would generate approximately 450 lbs. of red meat. However most families may want extra bacon, ham, or sausages to supplement and diversify their diets.

The following chart is a rough guideline of the amount of meat families could expect to eat in one year

Type Poultry Red Meat
# People Fryers Roasters Capons Ducks Geese Pork Beef Veal Lamb
2 15 5 2 2 ½ ¼ ½ ½
4 25 8 5 5 2 1 ½ ½ ½
6 30 20 10 5 2 1 1 ½ ½
8 50 15 6 1 1 ½ 2
10 20 50 15 6 1 1 1 2






This chart is a rough estimate of the quantities of meat required based on the number of people in the family.