Not all locations for these stores will carry Heritage Turkeys, so please be sure to call and reserve your turkey as early as possible. (Also, we do sometimes make mistakes in listings. But so do meat departments of some retailers--they may tell you they don't carry these turkeys when they do have them--to be sure, talk with the meat manager.)
Mary's Turkeys is our largest producer. See www.MarysTurkeys.com for a current list of Mary's Turkeys' retailers. Reese Turkeys in Kansas is also selling in California this year. See www.ReeseTurkeys.com.
Some Costco stores in California will carry heritage turkeys from Good Shepherd Ranch. See http://www.costco.com.
Three stores in the West and South Bay area: San Mateo, Menlo Park and Los Altos.
Willie Bird Turkeys
5350 Highway 12, Santa Rosa, CA, 707-545-2832. firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also pre-order one or more heritage turkey from these California Farms, for on-farm or in some cases mail shipment:
Rick & Mary Pitman
** Will also ship
Sylvia Mavalwalla, ** Reserve
early for 2006.
Reserve early for 2006.
Valley Center, CA
We donít like to be negative, but watch out for turkeys advertised as Heritage breeds, or similarly to, which arenít. Diestel Turkey ranch is raising an older breed called the Orlop strain of Broad-Breasted Bronze turkey. This is the predecessor of the Broad Breasted White. Itís essentially a white, but with brown feathers. These turkeys were developed by Orlop Turkeys and others in the 1930ís. They canít mate naturally. They do not mature like true Heritage Turkeys and they donít taste as good. Diestel is by far the largest independent turkey producer in Northern California. The Director of Slow Food USA and I approached them in 2002 to raise real Heritage Turkeys but they went in their own direction instead. Diestel is now marketing these turkeys as heirloom turkeys. The fact remains that they can be raised faster, with less feed, and they can therefore be sold cheaper, to drive genuine heritage turkeys out of the marketplace.