January 2012

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Talking turkey

By Christopher Lux | Photography by Roy Walter

Posted: Friday, Oct. 28, 2011

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Although the name suggests it, turkeys were not sold on Lee and Domisty Menius’ farm until very recently. Wild Turkey Farms started in 2001 when Lee Menius took the reins of the 140-year-old family farm in Salisbury. With his wife and two sons, he raised and sold beef, pork and eggs. But not turkeys.

“People kept calling and asking about our turkeys,” he says. “‘Why are you Wild Turkey Farms if you don’t have any turkeys?’ they’d ask. I just liked the name.”

But those many phone calls pushed the Menius family to try raising Thanksgiving turkeys. Their first year they had only 20 turkeys, last year they had 80 and this year they have over a hundred.

The free-range turkeys are processed fresh and sold on a first come, first served basis. He sends out an email mid-October announcing how many turkeys they have and how much they will cost per pound. The first ones to email back get the privilege of purchasing a turkey. When they’re gone, they’re gone. “Last year we sold out in five hours,” Menius recalls.

As for the price, Menius says, “Feed’s our biggest input for turkeys. Feed decides the cost of the turkey, really.”

Though it’s too late to get your Thanksgiving turkey this year, it’s a good idea to sign up for their email list to receive next year’s email announcement. The pasture-raised pork, grass-fed Angus beef and free-range eggs can be purchased at Davidson, Elizabeth Avenue and Salisbury farmer’s markets, or by contacting the farm directly.

For more information, visit www.wildturkeyfarms.com or email them at wildturkey_farms@yahoo.com.

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