Feb 19, 2014 — Ticonderoga has a new slaughterhouse. The Adirondack Meat Company, a USDA inspected facility, opened this month. It's amping up production - and filling a need for Adirondack and Champlain Valley farmers.
A few years ago, Peter Ward was talking to farmers, and he realized something.
"A lot of the local farmers in the Adirondack/upstate New York area would love to get into the cattle production end of agriculture, but they were unable to because there was a bottleneck in processing."
Ward drew up a business plan. He got a big grant from the Regional Economic Development Council. Now, he's the owner of the Adirondack meat company.
Until Ward opened his doors two weeks ago, the closest USDA certified slaughterhouses for Champlain Valley farmers were each a two-hour drive away – in Brasher Falls and Cambridge.
Customers are calling from as far away as Gouverneur, Binghamton, and Vermont. Farmers will pay him to slaughter and cut up their animals for their own resale. And Ward is also growing his own inventory to sell on the market.
"Right now we are doing beef, pork, goats and sheep."
Soon, Adirondack Meat Company will have a storefront in downtown Ticonderoga. In the mean time, it's developing what Ward calls a Saturday meat market, "where some of the local population can come in and buy certain cuts of meat and beef and pork from us and that's going to be our introduction to the retail market."
Ward says that planning a slaughterhouse from scratch allowed him to build a facility that makes sense for the business and the animals. He even contacted humane slaughtering activist Temple Grandin.
Once they've been up and running for a couple months, they'll start smoking meat in their thousand pound smoker: "We're going to have the ability to make beef, pork, ham and everything that people should be eating nowadays."
The company is now accepting reservations for 2014.