What brands of bacon are free range?

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white_elephant, Jul 8, 5:00am
Anyone know.

rainrain1, Jul 8, 5:12am
Nope. google it

lidbud, Jul 8, 5:30am
Freedom Farms, is Free Range, and Hellers have a range that is. (in a green pack)

holly-rocks, Jul 8, 6:21am

white_elephant, Jul 8, 6:28am
So that means that 'Beehive' my favourite brand is free range, looks like I can go back to my fortnightly treat!

petal1955, Jul 8, 6:33am
Island Bay Butchery in Island Bay and Strathmore Wellington

martine5, Jul 8, 7:21am
Were you watching that dreadful programme last night of the disgusting treatment of caged pigs. If you were I can understand why you would want to go free range. It was the animal cruelty that got to me. Just revolting

white_elephant, Jul 8, 6:17pm
I have been put off bacon since I saw the first program on pig farming several months ago so I couldn't bring myself to watch all of the program the other night. The cruelty in this day and age is hard to believe, especially in NZ. Also the chemicals added to make bacon is a worry too, just wish I didn't like the taste so much.

chris313, Jul 8, 7:12pm
Is it really?

white_elephant, Jul 8, 7:25pm
I think it comes from freedom farms. I'm going to ring around a few places today and find out more. It matters to me how the pig I eat lived and died. In saying this I am planning on eating less pig meat with the hope of giving up completely.

drommy, Jul 8, 7:32pm
There's a difference between Freedom Farms (a free-range brand with quite a bright cheery label) and free-farmed pork - that might trip some people up. Free-farming is touted by the pork industry as ethical but if it was truly free-range they'd call it free-range. I think they're trying to cash in on a potentially lucrative market while not having to make significant changes to the farms and output.

When I asked someone once they said that in free-farming they don't use sow crates and there is more room for the pigs to move, but I'm not anywhere near convinced that it's ethical enough for me. I vote with my wallet and only buy actual free-range pork - in practical terms, Freedom Farms are the suppliers in most of the supermarkets I go to.

You might find that Beehive is free-farmed rather than free-range.

chris313, Jul 8, 7:36pm
I feel similar - but I have a little strategy that maybe could go viral? When I go to a cafe or restaurant, I ask if ALL their pork and poultry products are free farmed. If they say "no" I take a month of Sundays making up my mind what vegetarian or vegan foods I might eat and possibly enjoy. Or, I take a walk and find another cafe. If you choose to do it, make sure there are plenty of other customers around. There are so many people out there who see and detest what happens to chickens and pigs, the more pressure we can apply, the more likely that these terrible practices will cease.

bedazzledjewels, Jul 8, 8:40pm
Mahy Farms, but I'm having problems getting it lately. Hendersonville do a free range one too.

wicked_garden, Jul 8, 9:00pm
Beehive isn't even New Zealand sourced pork, it is imported from who knows where. They manufacture Freedom Farms bacon desperately otherwise the packing would be the same. Their website mentions they source NZ honey several times (for the bacon cure) so you would think they'd mention the bacon is made from NZ product if it was.

Freedom farms don't raise their pigs outdoors in paddocks, it clearly says the pigs are weaned from 'mum' and put in shelters. That's is the definition of free farmed, born outside, no stalls or crates. The sows live outside permanently but their pigs are only outside for the first 4 weeks. Try APCA Blue tick for assurance.

bedazzledjewels, Jul 8, 10:02pm
Typo at #13. Should read Hendersons free range.

buzzy110, Jul 8, 10:55pm
Thanks for that information. I'll definitely be looking for the APCA Blue tick in future when I cannot get to farmer's markets.

The Farm Gate - http://www.thefarmgate.co.nz/ and Soggy Bottom - http://www.soggybottom.co.nz/

are both free range farms selling quality meats, including traditionally cure bacon.

arielbooks, Jul 8, 11:26pm
Also look for nitrate free.

chris313, Jul 8, 11:29pm
Oh! I saw the Soggy Bottom Stall on Sunday at the farmers market! We are having a mid winter Xmas very soon and I always pass on the ham though if I can get it from SB I will be highly delighted. Thanks for the info.

bedazzledjewels, Jul 8, 11:34pm
That's the SPCA tick referred to above, and Freedom Farms has that tick.
Here's their FAQ page -

buzzy110, Jul 8, 11:41pm
I don't think he'll have hams at this time of the year unless you order one. I love SB as well but I think that The Farm Gate does a better ham, basically because theirs are already cooked.

buzzy110, Jul 9, 12:51am
Thanks for the correction BJ. I didn't know what APCA was.

porka1, Jul 9, 1:06am
Free farmed product is the term used when sows are bred an fed outdoors.At farrowing the sows are housed in farrowing arcs where the piglets are born. .Here they are reared in this environment for the first four weeks of their life at which stage they are weaned and transferred to grown to bacon weight in barns indoors.These are the pigs that are used to make bacon.
Remember too that a huge amount of pork is imported and made into bacon so it could well be that the only NZ ingredient is the salt

beaker59, Jul 9, 2:20am
What annoys me is the Farm depicted on the Telly the other night was an abomination but it in no way reflects actual practice in NZ pig farms. A well run factory farm is nothing like that in reality and while not ideal it is the only way you are going to have affordable pork chicken and eggs for the ordinary person in the street.

I am old enough to remember the end of the days before factory farmed chickens when Chicken was a once or twice a year luxury. Unless you grew them yourselves.

white_elephant, Jul 9, 4:42am
I have just bought Freedom farms rindless eye bacon, locally farmed, no cages, crates or pens. Approved by the SPCA. On special from Countdown $9.50 for 250grms, not cheap but obviously worth it.

porka1, Jul 9, 5:10am
Yes when chicken was an end of lay hen about 18 months old.
Northland Free range pork advertised on a website at 43 dollars a kilo for chops.Definitely a niche market.