A Note From Our Turkey Farmer
“Taste the difference of a bird raised on fresh air, sunshine and lots of room to run.” ~ John Peterson, Ferndale Market
Why should you choose a turkey raised by Ferndale Market over any other? That’s a question that is best answered by John Peterson, the farmer who raises the delicious turkeys we offer for Thanksgiving. Here’s what he had to say:
Our story starts in 1939 when my grandmother, Fern, and my grandfather, Dale, purchased our farm in Cannon Falls, MN. They certainly chose a good a spot, as it’s served us well for nearly 80 years! Our farm has a lot of wooded land with beautiful oak trees that provide shelter for our flocks. It’s also got sandy soil which helps keep them dry. We move our flocks onto fresh pasture each week, rotating between two 15–20 acre ranging pastures with good grass cover and portable shelters, feeders and drinkers.
We’ve really seen, first-hand, how birds benefit from fresh air, sunshine and plenty of opportunity to run around on pasture. When raised that way, they stay healthier and don’t need to be treated with antibiotics. Plus it creates really delicious flavor! We want to preserve that pure turkey flavor, so we process our turkeys naturally. That means no added water, sodium or basting solution that conventional turkeys contain. We’re really proud of the way our turkeys taste, so we don’t need to mask the flavor!
I’ve always appreciated that there’s this day set aside for expressing gratitude. I am so thankful that I’ve been able to carry on the legacy of my grandparents. There’s a lot of pride for our family in remaining an independent, family farm that has preserved the farming practices my grandfather started with 80 years ago.
I’m moved by thinking about the number of family traditions that happen around our turkeys. As farmers, we invest a lot of care and effort in raising our flocks and there’s a satisfaction in knowing that our birds are nourishing families and holiday traditions.