Haen Meat Packing FAQs
Q. How long can meat be frozen?
A. Beef 12-15 months
Pork 6-9 months
Chicken 6-9 months
If you hold meat frozen longer, it will not be harmful but the quality and flavor may diminish.
Q. Do you smoke fish/poultry? How much does it cost? How long does it take?
A. Yes. $1.50 lb with a minimum charge of $6.00. Fish are done biweekly, please call for a schedule. Poultry is done weekly but because of the process they average 10-14 days.
Q. What is a good roast to put in the crock pot?
A. For beef, one of your best crock pot roasts would be the chuck roast and for pork the pork shoulder roast has the most flavor while a pork sirloin roast is a good leaner choice.
Q. What kind of meat do you use for hot beef?
A. We would recommend beef chunks cut from the chuck.
Q. Do summer sausage/snack sticks need to be refrigerated?
A. Yes, ours does require refrigeration. We don't use the procedures that allow not needing refrigeration.
Q. Do you ship?
A. Yes, call for details.
Q. Do you bake your own bakery items?
A. Yes, we bake daily right in our store. Call in your order ahead and we'll have it ready to go!
Q. How lean is your hamburger?
A. Our ground beef is a sirloin and chuck blend which averages 85-90% lean. We do have ground round that is about 100% lean.
Q. Do you have nutritional information available?
A. We have started adding nutritional information and have it available on some products. You will find these products in red on our product pages; click the product to see the nutrifacts. As we continue to grow we will continue to add this information.
Q. Do you make anything with no MSG?
A. All of our hams, bacon, dried beef, and wieners are MSG free. We also do make a NO MSG Pork Bratwurst and Chicken Bratwurst. These are separate products from our regular Pork and Chicken Brats. We will continue to work with our seasoning company to remove MSG from our products but still maintain the flavor and quality you have come to expect from Haens.
Q. Why is my hamburger dark inside?
A. Fresh ground beef goes through a number of color changes during its shelf life. These changes are normal and the ground beef remains perfectly wholesome and safe to eat. When exposed to oxygen, the color of beef will turn to a bright red. This explains why the beef appears red on the surface and can look darker inside.
Wild Game Processing
Q. What are the minimum weights for sausage?
A. Most of our sausage products have a 10lb minimum. Some are 5lbs. The dried venison and whole muscle jerky require muscles from the hind quarter. You can find a full list on our wild game processing page.
Q. Do you process bear, moose, elk, etc...?
A. We do process all species of wild game but those other than deer must be brought in skinned, quartered, or boneless. Our duck and goose sausage has become one of our most popular ways for hunters to utilize their ducks and geese.
Q. Can we bring meat in frozen?
A. Yes, we accept both fresh and frozen meat. Please transport meat in food safe bags or containers, do NOT use black or brown garbage bags. We do check all frozen meat for freezer burn.
Q. What if I don't have enough for the minimum required weight?
A. If you don't have enough meat for a minimum batch, you can purchase beef trim from us to make up the difference.
Q. Do I get my own meat back?
A. You always get your own cuts back but there is mixing on sausage products. We do everything in 100# batches but feel assured that quality is our top priority. All of the wild game that comes in is checked at least 3 different times for quality and freshness. Every product we make has our name on it and if you're not happy with it, you won't be back. At Haens we look at every product and ask ourselves one question: would I feed this to my own family?
Q. What do you add to my venison?
A. We add pork to most of our sausage products according to our recipes. Try them all if you like!
Q. What meat is best to mix with ground venison?
A. We have about the same amount of people who add beef as we do people who add pork. Some people prefer nothing added. It's really personal preference. Beef will keep it leaner, pork adds more fat making it softer and juicier.
Q. When will my order be done?
A. We will call you when your order is done. Turn around times depend on items in the order and the time of year. Please make sure we have the correct phone number on your order.
Q. How much does a 1/4 beef weigh/cost?
Q. If I want to order a split 1/2, do I have to find someone to buy the other 1/4?
A. No, we will sell the other 1/4.
Q. How long does it take to get an animal in for butchering?
A. Some farmers schedule their animals 1 year ahead of time to be sure we can accommodate them, especially from August to January when our schedule does fill. Some farmers schedule animals monthly for the same reason. We also do hold a waiting list for times when we are full. We do get cancellations and try to accommodate people on this list as quickly as possible. Please call for details or more information.
Q. When will my meat be done?
A. If buying from us, it usually takes 2-3 weeks from the time you order.
Q. Will everything be done at once?
A. Usually your whole order is ready for pick up together. Exceptions are if you have requested dried beef, ham, bacon, or some sausage products. It can take 10-14 days to process these items. We ask that you come in and pay for your whole order and come back at a later date for these items. We will make exceptions for those customers that travel a distance to get here.
Q. How does my meat come packaged? Can I get it vacuum packed?
A. All meat is packaged to go right to the freezer! It is packaged to your specifications and we use only top quality freezer wrap. Your fresh cuts have plastic between them for ease of separating and for extra protection. Everything comes labeled and dated. We do not vacuum pack custom cuts because it is unnecessary and more likely to lose its seal creating freezer burn.
Q. Do I pay for everything there?
A. If you purchased the animal to be butchered right from us, then you pay for everything here. If you purchased the animal through a farmer of your choice, then you pay us the processing fee and pay the farmer separately for the animal.
Cooking Tips/Meat Preparation
Q. Is your ham fully cooked? How do I cook it?
A. Our hams are fully cooked. They just need to be heated through. 140 degrees is a good serving temperature. Because the ham is fully cooked and no water added, overheating will result in a dry product.
Q. How long should I cook my steak?
A. Every grill and broiler cook differently so cooking times vary. You can always cook it more but you can't uncook it once it's overdone so it's best to check often and use a meat thermometer if desired. Beef should cook to 130° for rare, 145° for medium, and 160° for well done.
Q. Why is my pork dry and tough?
A. The biggest reason pork is dry is because people overcook it. Use a meat thermometer and cook pork to 160°. You won't believe how juicy and flavorful it can be!
Q. How long do I cook a beef roast?
A. Different cuts of beef will roast differently. Chuck roast and round roast should be cooked slow until tender. Rump roast, tri tip roast, and ball tip roast are great slicing roasts and can be cooked to your preference from rare to well done. You can always speak with a butcher either in the store or by phone if unsure.
Q. How do I make prime rib?
A. Prime rib is meant to cook very slowly. Check out our recipe section where you will find a couple different ways to prepare prime rib. Ask us and we will season it for you too!