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Where to get an ethically raised duck in/near Toronto?

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Hello hounds,

I'm looking for a shop that will sell me a cleaned, dressed duck (frozen or fresh) that was ethically raised. Meaning, it lived outside, and didn't live in a tiny cage for its whole life. (Perhaps even shot wild?)

Any recommendations?

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  1. 'Wing Tat' farm's ( based in British Columbia ) free range duck are sold in T&T markets.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Charles Yu

      Thanks Charles! I was at the port lands T&T earlier today actually, I'll check out the Wingtat duck next time I'm there.

      1. re: Charles Yu

        I haven't heard of free range duck other than from small farm producers, so I looked at the three major producers' websites, and did not find any reference to selling free range ducks. In fact, King Cole states that the CFIA regulations ban free range ducks to prevent avian flu and other problems.

        There is no mention of free range ducks at Wing Tat; it is not even clear whether they grow ducks or buy them.

        King Cole and Brome Lake raise ducks in free run barns, humanely. Both refuse force feeding.

        In the absence of good information from Wing Tat, I would buy King Cole, in major supermarkets, or Brome Lake, at T&T.

        http://www.wingtat.ca/about
        http://www.canardsdulacbrome.com/en/a...
        http://www.kingcoleducks.com/natural-...

        1. re: jayt90

          Interesting about e banning of free range ducks!

          I buy Brome lake products normally as it is the one I see available all the time (Longo's is my go to place). They have even had special product displays at Costcos in the past (frozen products)

          1. re: jayt90

            I saw Wing Tat's free range duck on sale at T&T's Richmond Hill Weldrick location this week end.

        2. IIRC ddpoultry gets their birds from a Mennonite farm, and I've seen them carry frozen ducks on occasion.
          http://www.ddpoultry.com/

          2 Replies
          1. re: asagiri

            Mennonite or Amish no longer equates to grass fed outdoor poultry. Ask first, if you don't like barn raised.

            1. re: jayt90

              I have been always wondering about this myself, whether Amish-raised would correspond to outdoor time or feeding. My experience with asking the distributors did not seem to give a clear answer.

              Does anyone have more information on this?

          2. (Replying to my own thread...) I wonder if one if the farmer's markets in the towns outside Toronto might be a place to look?

            1. Marvelous Edibles Farm occasionally sells ducks they raise in small quanties on their farm in the manner you seek.

              Beacuse they only raise a few animals they aren't covered by the CFIA ban on outdoor birds.

              They are at Brickworks and Wychwood on Saturdays I think they've done their slaughter for this year but they do freeze some.

              1 Reply
              1. re: bytepusher

                I was going to suggest Marvellous Edibles as well. I was at the farm during the summer and these are VERY well cared for ducks. He may have some available now but I would call and ask. Planning on getting one of his geese for Christmas dinner.
                http://www.marvellousediblesfarm.ca/

              2. http://www.kingcoleducks.com/natural-...

                Never tried these though, plenty flying over head. Geese too.

                1 Reply
                1. re: PoppiYYZ

                  King Cole have been around for a long time. I'll be heading to their farm soon to get a batch for butchering. Mmm, duck confit.

                2. Top Market Meats is a small farm in Ariss, Ontario that raises rabbits, ducks and other animals. An email sent out by them the other day indicated that their Pekin duck season is over and they're now moving on to Muscovy. Their ducks are all raised outdoors. http://www.topmarketmeats.ca/

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Tatai

                    What's the difference in eating quality between Pekin and Muscovy ducks?

                    1. re: asagiri

                      There are two main differences between Muscovy and Pekin (or a variation of Pekin). The first is size, especially male Muscovies, which can be as much as double Pekins. The breast meat on the males can be huge and easily feed two people. The second is the layer of fat, Muscovies being a bit leaner. I personally prefer Muscovy ducks, but both are delicious.

                  2. Ducks reproduce fast, really, really fast, and at this time of year, many small farmers are trying to get rid of their extra. Check out Kijiji, contact the farmer, see if they have a poultry processor they could send the ducks to. Or, if you are up to it, you could do it yourself, not too hard, Muscovy being easier since they have less down.

                    1. make friends with duck hunters!

                      I use to really be into duck hunting, and sometimes me and my hunting buddies would give our ducks away instead of just freezing them.

                      Nothing beats a fresh fatty mallard in November.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: ricoboxing

                        unless it's a fatty wood duck in early October, fed on acorns!

                        doing my first hunt of the season next week...i'm stoked.

                        1. re: ricoboxing

                          I recall autumn mallard meat having a naturally imbued Thai fish sauce subtlety.

                          1. re: jayt90

                            depends on what it's been eating.

                            1. re: jayt90

                              Whoa. I swore that the duck I ate last week at Splendido had the same. Then I thought I was crazy. I had no idea it was 'a thing' (I don't have duck overly often, not a huge fan). Fan, yes, huge, no.