Are you wondering if it is safe to order meat online? In this article, I will discuss in detail whether or not I recommend buying meat from an online retailer or using a meat delivery service.
Is It Safe To Order Meat Online?
If you have never ordered meat online before, you are probably curious about whether or not internet-sold animal protein is a safe choice for you and your family. This is a valid concern to have. It is very important to ensure that buying a perishable food item, like meat, online is low-risk and will not make you or your family sick.
Based on my experience, as long as you use a reputable meat delivery company and store your meat properly once it arrives at your residence, it is completely safe to buy meat online. Keep reading to learn some best practices for ordering meat online, to make sure it is entirely safe for consumption.
How To Order Meat Online Safely
To begin, choose a reliable, well-known meat delivery company for your purchase. You can use a search engine like Google to search for reviews or feedback on any company that you are considering using. Alternatively, you can consult people you know (and trust!) that have ordered meat online before. You can ask them if they have found a company they like and recommend. In my opinion, the best meat delivery service based on quality, reliability, value and convenience is ButcherBox. Other excellent, well-reviewed companies to buy meat online from include Thrive Market, Farm Foods Market and Crowd Cow.
Once you have decided on an online vendor to purchase meat from, you should research how they prepare and package their meat for shipment. Meat should always be shipped cold or frozen, preferably with cuts individually vacuum-packed. The company should use a sturdy, insulated box to send the meat to you.
Animal protein should also be packed with some sort of cold source, like dry ice or gel freezer packs. These cold sources will keep the meat cool while it is being transported. If your box arrives with dry ice, be sure to always handle it with care. Use protective gloves/oven mitts/a towel to protect your skin. Prolonged contact with dry ice can cause an injury similar to a burn. To safely dispose of dry ice, let the dry ice evaporate in a well-ventilated area that is not accessible to children or pets.
If you are unable to find enough information about a meat delivery service online, you can reach out to the company yourself. A quality delivery company will always include contact information on their website. The fastest way to get in touch will generally be by either phone, email, or instant chat. You can ask a company representative to describe their freezing, packing, and shipping process in detail, to ensure it meets all safety criteria.
Once you have chosen a meat delivery company, you can place an order with them. Some companies allow you to order meat products à la carte, whereas others require that you to sign up for a subscription. If you and your family consume meat regularly, you might find that you can get better value by starting a subscription. A recurring subscription service will usually deliver meat on a monthly or bimonthly basis.
What To Do When Your Meat Arrives
When the meat arrives at your door, you should open your package immediately. Make sure the meat is frozen solid or refrigerator cold, which is below 40°F as measured with a food thermometer. In accordance with USDA Freezing and Food Safety Guidelines, meats that are refrigerator cold, partly frozen (solid), or frozen can be placed into the freezer for later use. I recommend checking the internal temperature of any meat that isn’t solid. You should immediately discard anything that is above 40°F or that is exactly 40°F that may have been so for more than two hours. If any of your items arrive at an unsafe temperature, call the company and let them know. If it is a quality business, they will immediately agree to send you a replacement or refund your money.
After reading this article, I hope that you have learnt that it can be entirely safe to buy meat online. Just be sure to use a reputable, high-quality meat delivery service. You should also ensure that you handle your meat appropriately when it arrives at your doorstep. If you do this, then ordering meat online is a safe, convenient way to ensure that you always have animal protein on hand.
More Meat-Related Posts
Interested in learning about meat delivery services or healthy meat recipes? Check out these posts:
- What Is the Best Meat Delivery Service Online?
- 25 Healthy Meat Recipes for Dinner
- An Honest Review of ButcherBox
- The Top Organic & Grass-Fed Meat Delivery Companies
- 10 Easy Grilled Meat Recipes for Summer
Have you ever ordered meat online before? Let me know in the comments below!
Thanks for these helpful tips, Alia. I use Butcherbox and have never had an issue.
Hi Nicole, you’re welcome! Yes, ButcherBox is an excellent company, so I’m not surprised. 🙂
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Thank you very much!