TME Farms keeping it local with pork production
TME Farm’s Berkshire pigs get plenty of time outside to forage and live in their natural habitat. TME Farms/ Supplied
Murray and Edith Tabler established TME farms in this year with the mission to bring quality meat to the people.
TME Farms is located in the Rosalind area and have always lived the farm-to-table philosophy. They eat from their garden as much as they can and also raise chickens and pigs. They have been in the pork industry for 24-plus years and as a family place priority on understanding the correlation between the land and the food they eat. Over the years they have developed an excellent product and are excited for the opportunity to share it with others.
To be approved to sell meat, they needed the approval of Alberta Health Services and are now able to dispense pre-packaged food prepared in a licensed facility. TME farms is a mobile food vendor, selling meat from their trailer at markets, have weekly deliveries to Camrose, or can be picked up by appointment on location.
This summer TME farms brought their trailer to the Red Lamp market in Donalda. They made some great connections and met a few regular customers through their experience there. People who met them for the first time appreciated having the option to just buy pork chops, or small amounts at first, then once they tried it came back for more. According to the Tablers, people appreciate that they don’t have to buy a big quantity, they can choose 10- , 15-, or 20- pound packages or shop off a price list with a variety of product choices ranging from pork chops, ham, bacon, roast, nine to 10 varieties of sausage, and even some grain and soy-free sausage choices.
It’s important to know where your food comes from. TME farms is a farrow to finish producer, which means the pigs were born on their farm, and are raised until they are either sold live or as pork. The Tablers allow their animals to be in their natural habitat, and feed them the best soy-free grain based diet they can. The animals forage and do what animals normally do. Even though they get to live as pigs live, these aren’t just any pigs. The Tablers raise Berkshire pigs, which are a heritage variety known for their sweet and tender meat. They’ve had some customers say this is the best, most flavourful pork they’ve ever had. Satisfied customers become repeat customers and according to Edith, “people are looking for good food, there’s an element of trust building between us as producers and each customer”, “we work very hard to have a quality consistent product and that’s where the trust is built”.
As a family business, the kids are always interested, have been very involved in the process and like to help. According to Edith, it’s not just about selling the meat, they feel education for the kids is important to see the correlation between the land and the food they as producers eat.
The family has really loved getting to know their customers through markets, deliveries, and pick-ups, and most of their business has been built on personal referrals and word of mouth. TME farms currently provides pork to customers in Red Deer, Forestburg, Camrose, Sherwood Park, and Edmonton.
Tablers pigs are raised outside with access to sunshine.
A fun fact is that one tablespoon of lard made from this pork will give you half of the required daily dose of vitamin D. So, a good healthy fat, if you’re using lard in your cooking.
The Tablers are committed to purchasing their grain local, and buy all the supplies they need as close to home as possible. Doing business with a neighbour or local family-run business or farm is so rewarding and they have found the Camrose area to be very supportive. The Tablers say there’s room for many of more micro-producers, adding they believe “we can all find our niche.”
If you’d like to try some Berkshire pork from TME farms, contact Murray or Edith at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 780-679-7562. They do regular deliveries to Camrose on Tuesday afternoons or Friday mornings, and they’d be happy to provide your family with “naturally good meat.”
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