Feel Good About Your Food | Sustainable Agriculture

At Farmway, our mission is simple: provide your family with delicious, locally raised Ontario meats that not only taste great but that you can feel great about. 

Vegetarians and vegans tend to be seen as the most ethical eaters, but today there’s no reason meat enthusiasts can’t be highly conscientious as well.  You have many options: you can know where your food comes from, how animals are raised, how they’re fed, whether they’re able to move around outside and graze naturally, whether anything is added to your meats before they reach your home and more.

Farmway has been doing exactly this for 30 years now, and we’re still going strong.  Way back in the early 1990s, we realized that consumer tastes were changing: while delicious meats were and would always be important, we saw the beginnings of a shift towards greater knowledge of (and comfort with) the food production chain, and the rise of the locally sourced food movement. These, along with families becoming busier than ever and wanting an option for home delivery of meats and groceries, were the inspiration behind our founding.

Still, while our mission is simple, it’s a complex world.  There are a lot more people on the planet compared to three decades ago.  Ontario beef, pork and poultry farmers are under increasing pressure to deliver more food, and faster, while maintaining the exceptional quality and taste we expect – and meeting the aforementioned demand for locally produced meats, from animals raised in a sustainable manner. 

While there’s no single, simple answer to the challenge, we’re certain that sustainable agriculture is an essential part of the solution.  Farmway Foods is a proud advocate for and supporter of sustainable farming practices, including pasture-raised pigs and free running/cage-free chickens and turkey. In addition to giving you, our customers, assurance that your food is ethically and sustainably produced, these practices benefit all the participants in the food supply chain and also contribute to a healthier planet. 

Here are just a few of the sustainable agricultural practices you can expect from Farmway’s producers.

  • Animal welfare: excellent treatment of animals providing the healthiest and most natural life possible, including plenty of room to move around and unrestricted outside access to the greatest degree possible.
  • Growing their own grains: wherever possible, the grains and grasses used to feed the animals originate from the same farm.
  • Waste-free or minimal-waste production: our farmers and butchers maximize the use of the animal.
  • Good soil health: minimizing impacts on soil by eliminating unnecessary tilling and retaining as many nutrients as possible, backed up by monitoring.
  • Smaller, more local business cycles: Ontario beef, pork and poultry farmers are more likely to see shorter animal transport times, and to do business with local butchers (which in turn help to ensure all parts of the animal are used).

When you buy from Farmway, you can be confident you’re buying from – and helping to support our Ontario farm families.  We feel that’s important because sustainability has another dimension – a family one.  Truly sustainable family farms can be passed down to the next generation of farmers, who will by that point have spent many years learning the business.  That business, in turn, becomes a legacy.  To that end, Farmway Foods strongly believes in relationships that produce a fair income for farming families, a fair price for consumers, and a virtuous cycle of profit, reinvestment, and sustainable growth.

If you’re interested in learning more about Farmway, our local Ontario grass-fed beef, pasture-raised pork and free-run chicken, contact us today!

How To Fry The Perfect Local Ontario Beef Steak

For best results, keep your Ontario steaks in their vacuum packs and thaw overnight in your refrigerator. Use a skillet to fry your juicy local Ontario steaks.

Pan Searing:  Preheat pan over medium heat with small amounts of cooking oil.  Season your local Ontario beef steak, as desired and turn according to the guidelines below.  Always allow your steaks to rest for 3-5 minutes before serving to redistribute the juices.

The cooking guidelines below are in minutes and based on fully thawed steaks.

How to fry a beef steak

How To BBQ The Perfect Steak

How To Cook A Perfect Grass-fed Steak

For best results, keep your local Ontario beef steaks in vacuum packs and thaw overnight in your refrigerator. After cooking, allow the steaks to rest 3-5 minutes before serving. Verify the desired degree of doneness by using a meat thermometer.

Gas Grill: Preheat grill to high, reduce to medium heat prior to cooking.

Charcoal Grill: Sear over red hot coals, for steaks over 1 1/4″ finish over indirect heat.

The cooking times below are in minutes and based on fully thawed steaks.

Meal Planning Cheat Sheet: Save Money & Eat Healthier!

When a new year rolls around, most people make goals to save money, eat better, and live a healthier lifestyle. But how do you bring those goals into reality? With a little planning, it’s actually easier than you think.

One of the easiest ways to save money, eat better, and be healthier is learning how to meal plan! We all live busy lifestyles, which makes it easy to grab a sugary protein bar or greasy takeout while at work or running errands. Cooking at home allows you to save money, use quality ingredients, and control your portion sizes. Enjoying the benefits of home-cooking doesn’t mean you need to spend hours in the kitchen everyday. All you need to do is plan ahead and learn the art of meal planning. And of course, Farmway Foods’ Ontario meat delivery will keep your freezer and pantry stocked year-round, so you have everything you need to meal plan like a pro!

The Art of Meal Planning: Tips & Tricks

Make a menu: The first step to meal planning is to… plan! Flip through a recipe book or browse the internet to find some recipes you want to make for your family or pack for lunches. Make sure the recipes you choose are quick, easy, and can be easily doubled so you have leftovers. Bonus: take a look at our recipes and videos for inspiration (and be sure to use meats and ingredients from local Ontario farms to make your meals even healthier and tastier!).

Look at weekly flyers: Stop throwing away those grocery flyers in your mailbox. Flip through the flyers from your usual grocery store to see what’s on sale and what’s in season. Plan meals around the foods that are on sale so you can stretch your grocery budget. This tip is especially useful for perishables that need to be purchased often, like fresh and frozen fruits and veggies, eggs, and dairy products.

Check your refrigerator: Don’t let the foods sitting in your fridge go to waste! What foods do you already have on hand? What perishables do you need to use up before they expire? Plan your meals around the foods you already have in your fridge and pantry. Avoid recipes that require you to buy a lot of new things. You can also substitute ingredients in recipes with things you already have.

Add grains to your recipes: Grains are easy to cook, affordable, and delicious! They’ll also keep in your fridge for a few days. Rice and pasta can be added to your meals as a side dish or as part of your main dish. Consider healthy meals like chicken and rice, pasta with lean ground beef, or throw some lean ground beef, rice and chopped veggies in the skillet. Bonus: use free-run chicken and grass-fed beef from local Ontario farms so you can eat healthy meals and support Ontario farmers!

Choose easy recipes: Complicated recipes look delicious when you’re flipping through your recipe books, but if they can be pretty expensive and time-consuming if they require special ingredients and extra steps. Consider the cost of your time, trips to the grocery store, and the cost of extra ingredients you don’t already have. You might end up wasting money buying a special ingredient for one recipe if you’ll never reach for that ingredient again.

Plan for leftovers: If you’re cooking, double the recipe so you can stash leftovers in the fridge to enjoy the next day. And if you’re cooking a whole chicken, think about all the ways you can use leftover chicken for other meals. You can make delicious chicken sandwiches, chicken and rice, chicken soup, and more! Bonus: make sure your chicken is free-run and from local Ontario farms, so you can feel good about supporting ethical farming practices and local family-run farms.

Stock your freezer with ready-made meals: If you’re cooking foods like lasagna or soup, make an extra dish and freeze it to enjoy later.

Know what your family enjoys: Make your family part of your meal planning and encourage them to share their favourite meals. They’ll feel inspired to participate in the meal planning and cooking, so you can make it a fun family project. Bonus: when you work with Farmway Foods’ custom Ontario meat delivery, your family can pick the Ontario meats and grocery items they love to eat (no need to worry about being stuck with foods you don’t want!).

Look ahead: Take a look at the weather and your social calendar before creating your weekly meal plan. If a cold rainy day is coming up and you’ll probably be craving comfort foods, cook your favourite soups and chilis ahead of time and store them in your freezer. If you know you’re having guests over on the weekend, plan to cook a roast or a large dish so you have enough to feed everyone.

Choose a shopping day: Once you’ve made your meal planning sheet for the week, write down the ingredients you need to purchase. Nobody likes to waste time grocery shopping, so get everything you can at once. If your fresh fruits and veggies spoil too quickly, consider substituting your fresh ingredients for frozen. Bonus: frozen fruits and veggies are usually cheaper than fresh!

Keep a well-stocked pantry and freezer: We’ve all been there: you’re planning a meal and realize you’re missing a key ingredient. Don’t allow yourself to run out of the foods and ingredients you need at inconvenient times. Make sure your pantry and freezer are well-stocked and everything you need is easily accessible, so you feel inspired to meal plan and start cooking instead of ordering takeout.

Bonus: when you partner with an Ontario meat and grocery delivery company like Farmway Foods, you’ll never run out of your local Ontario meats and non-perishable grocery essentials! We’ll keep your freezer stocked with Ontario grass-fed beef, free-run chicken, pasture-raised pork, and wild-caught fish, so you have everything you need on hand to enjoy a variety of healthy meals. We’ll even deliver your pantry essentials so you don’t need to worry about multiple grocery store visits every time you run out of your favourite item.

Make Meal Planning Even Easier with Meat & Grocery Delivery in Ontario!
Enjoy Ontario Grass-Fed Beef, Free-Run Chicken, Pasture-Raised Pork
& Wild-Caught Fish

Farmway Foods Ontario meats are quick-frozen and vacuum-packed to maximize your convenience and make meal planning a breeze. Just take what you need out of your freezer, defrost, and cook! Enjoy fewer last-minute trips to the grocery store and eat premium quality meats from local Ontario farms. Discover the Farmway Foods difference and how we can help your family eat more delicious foods, save money, support local, and make healthier meals! Contact us today and learn more.

meal prep cheat sheet (1)

Ontario Grass-Fed Beef: What it is & Why You Need it

If you’ve been researching the best type of meat to feed your family, you’ve probably heard about grass-fed beef. Maybe you also want to make more conscious choices, like avoiding factory farming and supporting local farmers. But with the wealth of information available on the internet, you might feel a bit confused about what all these terms mean when choosing healthy foods that your family will love.

To help you out, we put together a short guide that explains the different types of beef on the market and some benefits you should consider.

There Are 3 Different Types of Beef on the Market:

Grass-fed beef: Grass-fed beef are naturally raised on Ontario farms. This means they’re able to roam the farm’s pastures and graze freely. During the colder winter months, they’re fed hay (which is simply dried grasses). Unlike factory farming practices, grass-fed and pasture-raised cows aren’t confined to small spaces or feedlot pens.

Grass-fed beef finished on grains will freely graze the pastures for 2 years, and their diet is supplemented with grains for the last 100 days to ensure the meat has a tender texture, ideal amount of marbling, and delicious taste. Grass-fed and grain-finished beef is considered more desirable, pasture-raising the cows ensures they’re healthier and happier, and finishing them on grains gives the meat has a superior texture and flavour.

Grass-fed/finished beef: Grass-fed/finished beef are also allowed to roam the pastures and graze. However, they’re fed grasses their whole lives. This gives their meat a low fat content, but the meat suffers from a tougher texture and a “gamey” taste that isn’t considered desirable for cooking.

Grain-fed beef: Grain-fed beef are often the result of mass-production or factory farming. The cows will drink their mother’s milk and eat grass for 7 to 9 months, then they’re moved to feedlots and are exclusively fed grains, corn, and/or soy. The feedlots typically contain small stalls and the cows are confined for several months before being brought to the slaughterhouse. The cows may also be given hormones to maximize their growth. The meat will have a higher fat content due to the cows’ grain-based diet and lack of exercise.

So Why Should You Eat Grass-Fed Beef?

Beef is jam-packed with high-quality protein that your body needs to thrive. It’s also a rich source of B12, B3, and B6 vitamins, iron, zinc, and selenium. Beef also contains lesser-known nutrients that boost brain and muscle health, such as creatine and carnosine.

How grass-fed beef benefits your health:

While all beef can be considered healthy and nutritious, grass-fed beef boasts a richer nutrient profile than its grain-fed counterpart. Grass-fed beef is higher in:

  • Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) – a healthy Omega 6 fatty acid
  • Omega-3 fatty acids – vital for brain health
  • Vitamin A – important for bone, teeth, and eye health
  • Vitamin E – protects cells from damage from free-radicals
  • Antioxidants – boosts the immune system and prevent cell damage

How grass-fed beef benefits the cows:

Grass-fed beef isn’t just better for you – it’s better for the cows. Many conscious consumers nowadays want to know where their food comes from and that the animals are treated humanely. When you choose grass-fed beef, you can feel good about the cows benefiting from:

  • Improved quality of life
  • Better mental and physical health
  • More space to exercise and socialize
  • Natural diet for optimal health
  • No factory farming and less stress

Get Healthier, Naturally-Raised Grass-Fed Beef from Local Ontario Farms

If you’re looking for pasture-raised and grass-fed beef from local Ontario farms, chances are you won’t find it at your local grocery store. If you want the highest quality grass-fed beef in Ontario, you can find it at Farmway Foods. We exclusively source our beef from local Ontario farms that practice ethical farming and raise their animals with the utmost care. The cows are free of added hormones and antibiotics, and are finished on barley and grains to ensure a delicious taste your family will love. The result? You can serve your family the healthiest, tastiest meats available and feel good about what you eat. Contact us to learn about our Ontario grass-fed beef today and taste the Farmway difference for yourself!

Watch Our Video: Ontario Grass-Fed Beef Makes a Delicious Meal!

Oh Hay There… What do Grass-Fed Beef Eat in the Winter?

Grass-fed beef is a healthier option that Canadians are actively looking for. But when our Ontario pastures are covered in snow during the cold winter months, it’s not possible for cows to graze on fresh grass year-round. At Farmway Foods, we’re frequently asked this question: “What is grass-fed beef fed in the winter?’

We never bail on this question because the answer is pretty simple: Hay!

What is Hay? Grass isn’t Always Greener

Hay is grass that has been mowed during the summer, dried, and bailed into bundles so it can be used as food in the winter. While we naturally associate freshness and nutrition with the vibrant green colour of grass, it maintains its nutritional content after being cut and dried into golden bundles of hay. This makes hay a healthy food for cows during the colder months. 

The misconception that hay isn’t nutritious is often because it’s confused with straw. Hay is made from the whole plant and is harvested at the plant’s peak freshness: it includes the stems, leaves, and seeds. Straw is harvested after the plant has matured and doesn’t include the seeds. Straw has almost no nutritional value and is typically used as bedding for a livestock barn, while healthy hay makes a delicious wintertime meal for many animals being raised on your local Ontario farms. 

How is Hay Made?

Farmers have been making hay for about 300 years! But as you can probably guess, modern methods for harvesting, bailling, and storing hay are significantly better than they were centuries ago. Today, beef farmers of Ontario feed their cows hay made from grass, legumes (such as alfalfa), and other herbaceous plants (such as clover). The hay is cut from the fields with a haybine pulled by a tractor when the seeds aren’t yet mature and the leaves are the most fresh and nutritious. The grassy material is allowed to dry in the summer sun, then a baler is pulled by a tractor to pick up the dried grass and tightly bind it into a round bale of hay. 

However, beef farmers of Ontario know the importance of carefully storing their hay to prevent it from becoming wet and ensure it isn’t near heat. Hay that’s moist or near a heat source can pose a fire risk. Moist or contaminated hay will also spoil quickly, making it unhealthy for the animals. To ensure the hay stays dry and fresh, hay is often stored inside and covered by tarp or wrapped in plastic.

Farmway Foods: Supporting Local Farms and Beef Farmers of Ontario Since 1991

Farmway Foods has been proudly supporting local Ontario farms for three decades! It’s our mission to provide Ontario families with the healthiest, highest quality meats available from local farms. When you partner with Farmway Foods, you can feel good about knowing where your food comes from and that it’s a healthy choice for your family. To learn more about our top-quality Ontario meat from local farms, talk to our expert food consultants and contact us today!