where to buy local meat, dairy in LA environs
I've really been inspired as of late (especially after reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and Omnivore's Dilemma) to try and buy products that are local, and not shipped across the country. Farmer's markets make the produce part pretty easy. But, I really want to be able to do the same with meat and dairy products. It seems like Southern California would be an ideal place to be able to get things local. I live in Glendale/Pasadena, and don't want to drive to Santa Monica or anything, as that uses more gas and kind of defeats the purpose. I know we have Whole Foods, but since they're a big chain now, I'm not sure I trust that just because they have "free range" on the label it means much. Anyone have suggestions as to where to get localish chicken, eggs, meat, milk, and the like?
For dairy products, in addition to Broguiere's and Alta Dena, Organic Pastures is also somewhat local -- they operate out of Fresno, CA. Here's a link to their webpage with a list of stores near Glendale/Pasadena that carry their products: http://www.organicpastures.com/cgi/Fi...
You might want to check with Fish King (on Glendale Ave in Glendale) re. poultry. I know they carry heirloom turkeys around the holidays, and while I'm not certain where their poultry comes from, it might be local.
While you are looking for a reliable, Southern California source for poultry, in the meanwhile, the company Foster Farms raises their poultry in CA and attests to raise their poultry humanely and to have all-natural, no hormone or antibiotic-added chicken.
As many have mentioned, Broguiere's is the choice for milk. It's sold at Whole Foods and HOWS markets, at least. I've found that the milk from glass bottles really does taste better. Although it appears to be more expensive ($2.39-$2.89 per quart, depending), both HOWS and WF will give you back more than a dollar per bottle returned, so the net price really isn't much different than the stuff in plastic or paperboard vessels.
WF also carries Strauss Family Creamery products...they're from NorCal, but they have more than simply milk (Broguiere's doesn't do butter or cream, for example, as far as I know).
As for eggs...many farmers' markets have local eggs. See, e.g., Pasadena (Saturday).
HOWS carries eggs from Trafficanda ranch, including cage-free eggs. I'm pretty sure they're local.
Whole foods is now labling some of their meats and chickens Local Grown. I asked the butcher as I was buying chicken today, he told me California grown, more specifically Northern California. So if you are trying to be a true Locovore that might not meet the requirements. But its better than being shipped across the country. I too read her book, it really opened my eyes.
Check out the famer's markets for local poultry, eggs, etc...
As mentioned above Broguiere's is a great local product. Our favorite milk period...
As for Beef, we are really loving the Farm Store in Cal Poly Pomona, they raise and slaughter all their cattle and at this point, I'd trust student meat packers more than any factory. They also sell their student grown produce and canned goodies. Here is my post with a selection on their products....
Broguiere's and Alta-Dena are both local to the greater Los Angeles area. Broguiere's even packages their products in return-required glass bottles. I must say that, except for their incredible eggnog that my wife adores, which is available only around the end of the year, we don't buy either company's products, but only because of our butterfat and lactose requirements. Check Trader Joe's and Whole Foods for Alta-Dena, and Gelsons and maybe Whole Foods for Broguiere's.
Though it may be more than you want to bargain for, **live** chickens are available at some markets catering to the Latino population. I've seen signs on a supermarket near Glendale Bl. and Alvarado, which is not far from you via Glendale Fwy. Can't get a more local chicken than a live one :)