I’ve noticed a trend in the last few years, and to my delight it involves locals eating more meat! Why do I get excited when I know people are eating more sustainable meat? Some would think it’s because of the business I am in, but that’s not the case. Although Valbella is happy to provide you with all your meaty needs, I also encourage everyone to have a backup plan such as getting to know a farmer who can sell you high-quality meat direct from the farm. However, the trend I am referring to is hunting and the reason it’s a great trend to see is for the same 3 reasons I have spoken about in the past newsletters about the benefits of eating more high-quality meat.
- For your Health – 15 micronutrients that are only found in animal foods
- For the Environment – We all know that eating sustainable meat is better for the environment than mono-cropping and flying produce and exotic fruits around the world. Cows eat what we can’t so we can eat them
- For the animals – Plant agriculture kills more animals and ecosystems than sustainably raised meat
If you are new to the newsletter and haven’t read those articles, I encourage you to do so. They can be found on our website at www.valbella.ca
Hunting is the purest and most traditional way of harvestings one’s own food. In the past, a successful hunt could mean the difference between life and death. Surviving a winter without ample protein and fat was not easy. It’s only in recent times where we’ve lost touch with the reality of harvesting in the fall for the long winters ahead. No amount of gardens full of kale are going to get you through a winter in Alberta, but in today’s world we don’t need to harvest because everything is available to us in an instant at any time of the year. Maybe it’s time to ask our grandparents and great grandparents what they were eating during the winter, I doubt oranges and bananas were ever on the menu. If I took a wild guess, I’d say most meals consisted of bread, butter and meat with sides such as potatoes and beans. Take away the meat and butter and you’re left with what a vegan diet would have looked like in Alberta many years ago (void of nutrition as it still is today!). This is why a vegan diet is the most unnatural diet in the world, it is simply not sustainable in any shape or form. Perhaps that’s why 84% of vegans go back to eating meat or why there has never been a vegan culture in the history of the world! That’s my vegan rant for the day, now let’s get back to hunting!
I realize that not everyone in the Bow Valley or beyond has easy access to hunting. It’s not something we take up one day and have instant success with. Proper equipment and licenses, as well as the know how to track animals, all the way to shot placement and butchering are all things that need to be learned. If hunting isn’t for you, then I suggest you get to know a hunter. Many times, hunters would gladly sell or give away a portion of their harvest. Alberta is Beef country but before Beef we had Bison, Elk, Deer and many other game animals. When eaten nose to tail they provide the full spectrum of essential nutrients required for the body. Add some carbs such as potatoes and rice to the mix and you have yourself the means to not only survive a winter, but to thrive. To me a diet like this screams local and sustainable in many more ways than anything we’ve ever been told.
If you are eager to get into hunting or have been hunting for many years but want to try out some new products, then here is how Valbella can help:
- First and foremost, all meat brought to Valbella’s for further processing needs a valid tag
- We will also collect information such as the hunter’s WIN #, species, sex, date and location it was harvested. We are audited yearly on these points and NO exceptions will be made
- We cannot accept whole animals or carcasses, all meat brought to us for further processing needs to be deboned and in good condition. We have the right to refuse anything we deem unsafe or improperly handled. If you are unsure of how to process your animal please reach out to me and if there is enough interest Valbella will put together a video series
- Here is a list of items we can make
- Sausage making – Pepperoni sticks, Landjaeger, Smokies, Bratwurst, Italian sausage
- Grinding and packaging
- We accept meat all year up until mid November and then again in January. This is due to our increased production schedule leading up to Christmas
With all the insanity in the world, this could be a long winter so fill your freezers full of meat! Happy hunting and until next time!
January Special - 15% off Mini Butter Chicken and Ham&Cheese pies
Offer available in the deli or online at www.shopvalbella.ca for delivery to the Bow Valley, Cochrane & Calgary
As we all get ready to say farewell to 2020 here's a reminder of our opening hours over the next few days.
Thursday 31st - 8am - 4pm
CLOSED FRIDAY -TUESDAY
OPEN WEDNESDAY 6TH JANUARY
We're having a few days off to move to our new pop-up deli as they start the renovation on the inside.
Find the pop-up deli just behind the current one from Wednesday 6th. Then we will be back to our usual hours
As we continue work on our shiny new deli we will be moving to a temporary pop-up store, located in the warehouse behind the current building.
Same address 104 Elk Run Boulevard, Canmore
From January 6th you will find all our same great products and service as the current deli. We will be here until the spring and then we will launch our beautiful new space for you all.
If you have any questions please call us on 403 678 9989 or email [email protected]
You can still order online for in-store pick-up and delivery at www.shopvalbella.ca
Last newsletter I mentioned the importance of animal foods from a nutritional standpoint and came to the conclusion that a diet without adequate animal nutrition simply doesn’t work in the long term for humans to thrive. Remember, surviving and thriving are very different. One can easily survive off of plant foods just as our ancestors did at times when meat was lacking, but when fresh meat was an option it was always the first option and there’s very good reason for this. Here is a good recap for those that may have missed the previous newsletter. https://www.kevinstock.io/health/evidence-for-a-meat-based-diet/
And here is a list of nutrients essential to human life that are NOT found in plant foods
Now that we’ve covered nutrition, lets talk about the environment. The best judge of a healthy and diverse ecosystem is the health of the soil, and the best steward of the soil is a ruminant animal. Cows eat grass without disturbing the environment, they digest it and poop out a pile of fertilizer which causes carbon sequestration, creating nutrient-rich soil where plants thrive and in turn create a rich ecosystem for all animals. In Alberta’s case, that ruminant animal used to be the mighty Bison, now, it’s fair to say that cattle have taken that spot. There is a reason we call “Alberta Beef” the king of Beef. It’s not because the Cargills of the world have set up shop in Alberta, it is because of the high quality and robust pastures of this Province. If cattle are the best thing we could possibly do for our soils, therefore the environment, and high-quality meat is needed for optimal human health, then that alone makes a pretty strong case for eating Beef. What we need is to shift away from the feedlots and towards a more sustainable approach, an approach that puts the health and welfare of the animal as top priority, an approach aligned more closely with nature and not one based solely on profits. Feedlots are not necessary, they are simply a way to increase profits and control the food system. If we want to be good stewards of the environment, the best way to do it is by the food choices we make on a daily basis.
For a better understanding of how eating meat is important for our environment, I encourage everyone to visit https://www.sacredcow.info/ At the same time, I encourage everyone to sign up for the free film premier coming soon called “The Sacred Cow – The case for (better) meat”.
The mainstream media would have you believe that cow farts are contributing to climate change, but this is a flat-out lie. Check out the diagram below for a better understanding of the role cow burps (not farts) play in the carbon cycle.
We’ll look at why eating animal foods is the best thing we can do for the animals in the next edition of the newsletter, in other words, animal welfare and the ethics of consuming meat.
Please feel free to reach out to me directly at [email protected] if you would like to discuss these topics in more depth or if you have questions or comments. In the meantime, eat a grass-fed steak and stay strong and healthy!
In the very first Valbella newsletter a couple of months ago, Beau, our Marketing Manager, asked me, “Why is it important to include quality animal foods in our diet?” In my opinion, there are 3 reasons:
- For our Health
- For the environment
- For the animals
It’s now obvious that animal foods are required for optimal health and properly managed grazing is crucial for the soils and hence the environment, but what about the animals? Does a cruelty-free diet truly exist?
If we ask ourselves a few simple questions we realize that no matter what ends up on our plate, at some point an animal died, in most cases many, and that’s before you even get to the meat that’s on your plate.
In a study done by the University of New South Wales in Australia, it was noted that producing wheat and grains kills at least 25 times more sentient beings per kilogram of protein than raising livestock. https://newsroom.unsw.edu.au/news/science-technology/vegetarian-dilemma
The truth is there is no such thing as a cruelty-free diet. With life comes death and to think that we are somehow above this is delusional. I by no means advocate for a strict carnivore diet but if we did compare a nose to tail carnivore diet to that of a vegan diet, we would quickly see that a vegan diet has a higher overall death toll than the opposite. I would prefer a humanely killed cow that has given back to the earth many times over, rather than knowing thousands of sentient beings unnecessarily had to die for all the processed plant foods on my plate. Let’s look back in time for clues on how we can reinvent our broken food system, respect the animals we harvest, and use them in their entirety. Let’s give our kids the choice to eat what they naturally crave, rather than relying on mass marketing to entice them into the processed food aisles. To think that mono-cropping and fake meat will have a smaller effect on the environment than raising cattle is a dangerous place to be. Properly managed livestock, fed and finished on their natural diet is not animal cruelty. Swiftly and humanely killing an animal is not animal cruelty. Destroying ecosystems to grow mass produced mono-crops is animal cruelty.
I’ll finish by saying that I find it truly fascinating that the same 3 reasons I believe meat is not just important but required for optimal human health are the same 3 reasons veganism claims we shouldn’t eat meat. How backward has this world become when we let corporate “science” decide what should be on our plate. How can we simply forget about how our ancestors lived a disease-free life with an abundance of animal foods? The more trust and hope we put into a broken food system, the harder it will be to come back from it. Put your money where your mouth is seems like a fitting analogy here., find a farmer that can produce real food for your family because it’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when the grocery store shelves will run dry again.
For more information on the benefits of meat please visit https://www.sacredcow.info/
Please feel free to reach out to me directly at [email protected] with questions or comments or any meaty topics you’d like to hear about
In last week’s newsletter I mentioned we would dig a little deeper into why I believe high-quality meat is such an important part of our diet. I like to look at it from 3 perspectives: Nutrition, Environment, and Ethics/Animal welfare, the same 3 pillars of the vegan diet. This week we’ll cover nutrition and why including an abundance of high-quality animal foods in one’s diet is truly the only way for our bodies to get the micronutrients we need. I’d like to start by saying that I am not a certified nutritionist, nor do I pretend to be. I will use the sound research of many experts in the field that have all come to the same conclusion, and that is that the only suitable human diet is one that includes an abundance of animal foods. A good start into understanding this concept is with this useful guide written by Dr. Kevin Stock.
Visit his website here
The term “superfood” is something we have all heard, but is it based on nutritional science or is it simply a marketing term used to sell the perceived health benefits of a certain food? We’ve all been led to believe that if it’s green and comes from an organic garden, it must be good for us, but what are we actually ingesting and absorbing when we eat some of these greens? Can Kale play a more significant role in our health than a steak? One is touted as a super food (that no one likes) and the other is demonized for “health” reasons. Again, I’m no nutritionist but I can assure you kale doesn’t stand a chance when put up against a powerhouse of a food such as a healthy grass-fed ribeye. The absorption rate of iron from a steak is much higher than through spinach, even though in a direct comparison, spinach has high levels of iron, the question is, how does OUR digestive system absorb those nutrients? Another great guide written by the same doctor looks at things from a different perspective, instead of looking at what is good for us about meat, this guide opens the door on what is toxic to us in plants. I highly encourage reading this as it’s a true eye-opener to the not so pretty world of plant foods. Visit his page here.
There’s a reason 84% of vegans go back to eating animal foods at some point in their lives. Our brains are made of fat and water, if we feed it nutrient-dense animal fats and proteins, it will thrive, listen to your body, not your news feed!
If you’d like to learn more or have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me directly at [email protected]
some other great links on ancestral nutrition include:
These days our back of house is running at full capacity and the team is rushed off their feet making sure we are always stocked up with your favourites. Jeff can’t help but get involved where the action is and can often be found in the back running the smokehouses or helping out the packaging team especially in these busy times. Jeff is a true
carnivore and his philosophy shines throughout the whole of Valbella.
Jeff, Why is it so important for us to have meat in our diet?”
"Having meat in our diet is so important because eating a diet focused on high-quality meat from local farms (especially while living in a place like Alberta) does not only give us the most bioavailable form of nutrition with the least amount of input, it’s also best for the environment and, believe it or not, for the animals. It’s simply too much to cover in a short amount of space, therefore over the next few newsletters I will break it down into 3 categories (nutrition, environment, and animal welfare) and explain in more detail why meat is the answer and not the problem like so many have been led to believe. I look forward to having you all join me and learning all the benefits of an animal-based diet, and triggering a few vegans along the way!!"
Christmas is now available to pre-order via our online deli.
Visit www.shopvalbella.ca to order today.
Delivery is available to the following locations.
Bow Valley - Wednesday 23rd December
Cochrane - Tuesday 22nd December
Calgary - Tuesday 22nd December
15% OFF our Paprika Goulash throughout all of November