"Put a Bird on it." Let's talk turkey!

Real Estate Broker/Owner with ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors

"Put a Bird on it." Let's talk turkey!

Put a bird on itThe phrase, "Put a Bird on it," comes from the quirky IFC TV show, Portlandia, which spoofs the lifestyle in nearby Portland, Oregon. The episode implies that if you "put a bird" on something it becomes art. This time of the year, "Put a Bird on it," reminds us that it's time to talk about which Thanksgiving turkey to put on our tables. 

There are plenty of birds to choose from too;  organic, sustainable, free range, heirloom or heritage, and of course, the many fresh (or frozen) commercially raised turkeys. You'll find lots of options at local grocery stores and many suggest that it's time to reserve your "fresh" birds. 

Turkey talk - many choices when it comes to putting a bird on it. 

Put a bird on it You'll find most of the turkeys in our local stores are broad breasted white turkeys. It's the type of turkey often raised with chemical feed and growth stimulants. Many have an unnatural white appearance that speaks of its artificial lifestyle. 

One of the most popular brands of fresh/frozen turkeys in our country is the Butterball brand. The company says their birds are hormone free, gluten free, and completely natural. However, if you do some research, there is a bit of controversy surrounding that claim. 

In our region, Foster Farms, a California based company, has a history of a commitment to raising healthy birds. The Foster Farms poultry we purchase in local stores has been raised in Washington and Oregon. They too claim their turkey has no added hormones, steroids or artificial enhancers. 

Walking the Turkey Talk - Putting a healthier bird on the table.

Turkey Talk

Keep in mind, Federal regulations do not allow farmers to add hormone and steroids to any poultry. Therefore, don't get too "wowed" by those claims on packages. 
As with most things, you get what you pay for in terms of turkey. 

Some consumers are now taking food buying a step farther, there's a growing trend for purchasing true organic, or sustainablly ably grown foods. The idea of fresh and local in growing in appeal.

Turkeys are no exception.  Be sure to look for birds that are certified organic. Diestal brand turkeys, for example, claim their organic poultry is third-party certified by Oregon Tilth Certified Organic. The birds are carefully handled by growers and processors. 

Sustainable turkeys are similar to the organic label. These birds contain NO additives and are given access to the outdoors during their growth life-cycle. Once again, do your homework and expect to pay more for the Certified Organic and Sustainable label. 

The even more expensive option is the heritage turkey. These birds get plenty of free-range exercise and enjoy a natural diet of dinsects and grasses. Since they take longer to mature, their flavors are more pronounced, with a higher dark meat to white meat ratio than other birds. 

The Midget Whites and Bourbon Red heirloom turkeysf in particular score high in taste tests. Regardless, it pays to do some research in order to determine the type of bird that's best for your family. This  season, it's time to talk turkey and "Put a Bird on it," for the upcoming holidays. 

More Turkey Talk on Pinterest!

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ViewHomes™ grew out of our passion for nature, beautiful surroundings, and peaceful environments. Starting together in an urban environment, over the years we've gravitated towards areas with smaller populations and less density. We now enjoy our lifestyle in a rural environment, but with close proximity to metropolitan areas where we appreciate all the amenities of fine restaurants, shopping, and an easy drive to an international airport.
Living in ViewHomes™ is like having “elbowroom for the soul”.







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  1. John McCormack, CRS 11/06/2013 10:45 AM
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Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

You're welcome Ralph. 

Nov 08, 2013 03:29 AM #39
Amy Gutschow
RE/MAX - Sheboygan, WI
Professional Real Estate

Thanksgiving is such a great holiday for getting the family together and enjoying some good food! Thank you for the post, Debb!

Nov 08, 2013 04:05 AM #40
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

Certainly Amy. D

Nov 08, 2013 04:10 AM #41
Paul Collier
Patriot Home Mortgage - Huntington Beach, CA
Paul Collier

Am I the only one that feels bad for eating organic turkeys that have been living a life roaming in the meadow eating corn only to be snatched up to put on our table? At least if they were in a cage, they'd probalby prefer being eaten.

That being said, I prefer ham :) But thanks for an awesome and informative post! I enjoyed it!

Nov 08, 2013 04:23 AM #42
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

Hahaha Paul, I can always appreciate a different perspective. A qualitify of life issue eh? ;)

Nov 08, 2013 08:10 AM #43
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

weekly notification

Nov 09, 2013 09:37 AM #44
Ed Silva
RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

Debb, for me the best turkey is the one presented to the table for me to carve, and I get to pick my best piece first

Nov 09, 2013 11:29 AM #45
Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty
Bucci Realty, Inc. - Melbourne, FL
Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County

Nothing says fresh like going hunting to get your own bird! I know it is not for some folks but it will avoid the preservatives and other controversies...except the PETA folks!

Nov 09, 2013 09:02 PM #46
Sharon Lee
Sharon Lee's Virtual Assistance - Jonesborough, TN
Retired and loving life

Awesome info Debb-A lot of thought and time went into this post

Nov 09, 2013 09:17 PM #47
Brad MacKenzie
Brad MacKenzie - Duxbury, MA
Turning Houses into Homes on the South Shore

That's great. Ditto to what everyone else said!  We put a pie on it yesterday, selling pies for $25 that were donated by area bakers and restaurants.  The money pays for a needy person's food for a week at Thanksgiving.

Nov 09, 2013 09:46 PM #48
Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573
Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker

In my little border town, you better get your turkey when they are on sale for Thanksgiving because the thousand each store has get swept up, taken across into Canada. Their turkeys are sky high priced and something about range fed vs factory farms or what they eat make the USA ones tastier. Hobo turkeys sleeping under the stars, playing harmonicas, eating their can of beans and singing prairie songs are happier I guess. Put me down to light meat, and is it too early to start munching on the pumpkin pie before I clean my plate?

Nov 09, 2013 10:19 PM #49
Fernando Herboso - Broker for Maxus Realty Group
Maxus Realty Group - Broker 301-246-0001 - Gaithersburg, MD
301-246-0001 Serving Maryland, DC and Northern VA

You are the Wikipedia for turkeys for sure. .just in time for Thanksgiving

Nov 09, 2013 11:37 PM #50
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

Thanks so much Kathy! You are awesome for including me.

Whatever works Ed. ;)

Gary, you can't please everyone.

Thanks for noticing Sharon - it was a bit of work. Lol.

I always like a "little pie on it" Brad! Good for you.

Nov 10, 2013 12:22 AM #51
Wayne Johnson
Coldwell Banker D'Ann Harper REALTORS® - San Antonio, TX
San Antonio REALTOR, San Antonio Homes For Sale

Debb-That was a lot of information unknown to me about our famous Thanksgiving bird. Thanks.

Nov 10, 2013 12:28 AM #52
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
New Hampshire Home Stager

Since changing to a plant based diet in January, this will be my first Thanksgiving without turkey.  Turkey was always my favorite meat and it's what we ate mostly each week.  Now I know the hard cold facts and turkey would be my last choice if I were going to eat meat.  That said....if it's one day, eat whatever you want.  If you are going to eat it on a regular basis, it's best to choose the healthier options.

Nov 10, 2013 12:49 AM #53
Patricia Beck
RE/MAX Properties, Inc., GRI, CDPE - Colorado Springs, CO
Colorado Springs Realty

We bought an organic turkey last year and it was so good!  Looking at comment #35, $149 for a heritage turkey is pricey though!

Nov 10, 2013 12:52 AM #54
Mitch Muller - Charlotte NC Real Estate
ProStead Realty Charlotte, NC CRS SRES mitch@prostead.com - Charlotte, NC
Certified Residential Specialist

Interesting read Debb! I'm sticking with the butterball and all I want to know about it is, that it tastes ummm ummm good!

Nov 10, 2013 01:03 AM #55
Helen and Larry Prier- Re-Max Gateway - Residential Real Estate
RE-MAX Gateway- Residential Real Estate Sales - Anacortes, WA
Anacortes & surrounding Skagit & Island Counties

Debb, Who knew about these turkey facts. However, as a change we have decided to go with stuffed pork loin this Thanksgiving.

Nov 10, 2013 03:56 AM #56
Lisa Friedman
Great American Dream Realty - Essex, VT
30 Years of Real Estate Experience!

Debb, this was very interesting to read. I rarely cook tukey because it always seems like such a production, so maybe only three per year. I am too much of a carnivore to ever go vegetarian, sadly. Organic seems to be the way to go, although its usually a toss up with me on what items I am willing to pay more for. That is a great picture of the turkey's colorful face!

Nov 10, 2013 04:43 AM #57
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Timely advice for the Thanksgiving season. 

Many seniors will be preparing just a part or two of a turkey. 


Nov 10, 2013 09:29 AM #58
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REALTORS® in Clark County, WA
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