There were two primary factors that lead to us wanting to develop a bison jerky product:
- A shelf-stable way to enjoy really great meat.
- The idea of whole animal utilization.
If you have ever had a game freezer fail on you (or accidentally get uplugged or left open) you know the immense pain of losing a freezer full of meat. I've had it happen twice in my lifetime and its a real gut punch to throw away meat you've worked hard to procure.
By seasoning and dehydrating meat, you can extend its shelf life by up to a year. (When done properly, don't take this as a food safety article).
As a hunter, I was familiar with the idea of whole animal utilization—the idea that if you are going to take an animal's life, you want to use every bit of it as a way to maximize the resource and honor the life of the animal.
However, it wasn't until I started getting more interested in bison and regenerative agriculture that I was made aware of how big of a deal whole animal utilization is when you multiply it across a whole herd.
Every chicken has two breasts, two thighs, two wings, and two drumsticks... but not every US consumer purchases a whole chicken.
In the same way, every bison has a relatively small percentage of high-demand prime cuts (T-bones, Ribeyes, Sirloins, and Filets) but that bison also has roasts, trim, liver, heart, etc... And just like with chicken, not every US consumer is buying whole bison. In fact, the demand for the prime cuts—particularly to restaurants—generally outweighs the demand for the rest of the animal.
Ranchers are left with a disproportionate relationship between supply and demand; and when supply is fixed (every animal has every part) the portion of the equation that requires attention is the demand.
Now, you can either launch a massive national PR campaign to encourage more folks to help out rancher by ordering less popular cuts of meat, or you develop a product that utilizes all the parts of the animal in a way that is easy to enjoy, easy to transport, and has a long shelf life.
Enter Ranger Bison Jerky.
We start with grass-fed bison, add a tasty mix of spices, and dehydrate the meat to give it a long shelf life.
It's sincerely my favorite jerky I've ever had, and you won't rip your teeth out biting into it.
Pack it with you the next time you head out on your favorite outdoor pursuit.