In the field / Mindful eating at Moriarty Meats
A commitment to local meats and French butchery makes this shop stand out
Caitlin and Tom Moriarty
Photo by Luke Copping
1650 Elmwood Ave Buffalo, NY 14207
As evidence mounts for the unsustainability of industrial meat production and increased health benefits of a plant-based diet, pressure to give up meat increases. But choosing a vegan lifestyle wasn’t likely an option for our early ancestors, as they struggled to thrive. Becoming skilled hunters fed the growth of our brains, both nutritionally and intellectually, and likely led us to the point where urban dwellers can now freely choose to eat meat or not. And for those of us in Western NY who continue to feed our body and soul with the ancient pleasure of meat seared by the heat of flames, we now have a new option for meat sourcing and substance.
Local, pasture-raised meat isn’t uncommon to find directly from farms, farmer’s markets, or in local restaurants as the farm to table movement continues to grow. However, with the establishment of Moriarty Meats, local bounty is now presented to us fresh, daily with all the convenience of a supermarket meat counter. Tom Moriarty does all the hunting and gathering for his customers, establishing relationships with area farmers, and filling his case with animals raised locally, humanely, and generally on pasture with a natural diet.
Diets consisting mostly of grass are not only better for animals’ well-being, but research is building indicating that benefits are passed on to human consumers as well. Those concerned about weight gain should know that grass-fed meat is generally leaner, reducing the calorie count per serving. Sixty percent of the fat content in grass is in the form of Omega 3 fatty acids, resulting in grass fed animals having anywhere from two to four times the Omega 3 levels of their feedlot cousins. Omega 3 fatty acids have been shown to lower blood pressure, instances of irregular heartbeats, and the risk of heart attacks. Grass-fed animals also contain higher concentrations of two powerful anticancer compounds: vitamin E and CLA (conjugated linoleic acid), which have been shown to reduce breast cancer risk in women. Pastured animals also put less strain on the environment, as grass requires less water and energy than typical feed crops like corn and soybeans. And the local loop means your grocery dollars stay in WNY.
Moriarty’s butchery selections come from big, small, and micro farms all over WNY. Some farms are certified organic, but often farms can go beyond the certification’s requirements without paying for the designation. The key is always to know (and trust) your farmer, and Moriarty provides transparent sourcing, with all producers listed. Maybe the best part is that fresh, local, pasture raised meat isn’t only more nutritious, it just plain tastes better.