Savory Butcher is an alternative to Zaycon that is worth getting super giddy about for both budget and quality. I am so excited to be writing about this next money-saving topic – The Savory Butcher.
In fact, as you read the article, you might find a fun twist to this article. An unexpected twist. It was unexpected to me.
What is The Savory Butcher?
- The Savory Butcher provides the highest quality of meats available from American and humanely-raised animals with ethical killing practices.
- The meats produced would be comparable to the highest quality of conventional meats found in the grocery or warehouse stores.
- The meats have no added hormones and are antibiotic-free.
- The meats have no fillers (unlike the chicken you buy in the grocery store that states up to 15% added juices…).
- The meats go from farm to your trunk in just a few days. The meat is never frozen. It IS farm fresh.
- The Savory Butcher will be offering an organic chicken, 100% grass fed beef and uncured bacon line at different times! YAY!!
- The Savory Butcher does not require payment many weeks or months in advance for your order (unlike a previous company many of us lost money on because of this). Payment is the week and even day of pickup.
- The meats offered are 30-50% less than the grocery and warehouse stores for the same comparable quality because it is direct from farm to customer with “The power of group buying in bulk!”
If Savory Butcher has such high quality, why are the prices so low?
This is the brilliant, money-saving tactic to get the best for less. You simply need to change your perception and mindset regarding how you purchase meats and with a change in how you shop, you can get the best for less!
That mindset change is the idea of “the power of group buying in bulk.” Yes, it is like a co-op and it is like a co-op that buys in bulk as a group. This is how you get those amazing prices. That is the secret to obtaining a fantastic deal.
Essentially, a large group of people in one area come together as a community and each claim part of the bulk order, then the prices drop to that of what a grocery store or warehouse store would buy the product for. And instead of repackaging the product and filling a bunch of brick and mortar stores with the repackaged (and often filled with juices or extra fillers to make the meats look more full and fresh and charge you for those store-level added juices) you are bypassing the stores and getting the meats yourself to repackage at home how you desire for your family size.
Fresh meat that is freezer ready for freezer meals, canning, cooking part of it for those “emergency meals,” etc.
Why BOTH Group Buying and in Bulk?
You may be wondering why it has to be BOTH GROUP BUYING and in BULK. This is because the stores get them from the farms in bulk packaging of 40 lb. cases. So a grocery store would order a several of cases per store each week in one area of a 50 mile radius, amounting to dozens of 40 lb boxes. Then each store would open those cases and repackage in different sizes.
Well, The Savory Butcher is simply obtaining the same buying power. But each customer gets their own 40 lb case (you can split it with others). The Savory Butcher is not at liberty to open the packages, handle the food and break them up further as this would require a commercial kitchen, additional licenses and increase the price dramatically because of this extra handling and regulations.
So to keep the process as affordable and simple as possible, The Savory Butcher gathers families who have committed to the group buying model, goes to the farms with the same buying power as the grocery chains, picks up the cases and delivers to the families in the local areas. Then it is up to each family to either repackage the case for themselves for the next few months, or to divide it amongst their friends.
The Savory Butcher Taste
There is also one additional point that is a good one for those that like good-tasting meats. Not only can you get the best products for the prices of the lowest quality products, but the taste far surpasses that of the grocery stores as this meat is super fresh and never frozen on top of the top quality! This makes for a great tasting meat and once you taste it, you will know exactly what I am talking about.
I am a SUPER PICKY meat eater. In fact I am not a big meat eater. In my frugal journey, I’ve had too many low quality meat eating experiences and I can’t stomach most meats. But that’s why The Savory Butcher is an even sweeter experience – budgets AND tummies everywhere are satisfied.
Generally, grocery store meats are picked up by the store chain’s warehouses, stored in a warehouse and often frozen for storage between grocery store transportation and when they store it in the back to refill when the supply runs low in the front end can often be a couple of weeks and already frozen once already. In this case, it is completely fresh, straight from farm to trunk in a few days!
That top quality COMBINED with freshness makes for a tasty experience that makes a difference in your meals.
Here’s the TWIST
I can confidently make all of the claims above. How? Because The Savory Butcher is MY project!
I, Cassie, am one of the co-founders of The Savory Butcher. Yours truly….
Do you want to hear The Savory Butcher story…at least the story so far?
In my quest to be a money-saving blogger, my goal has been to find the best options for families everywhere to save money and live healthier lifestyles.
I have been blogging here for 9 years (along with Alex who has his own project helping others on the other side of a frugal, healthy lifestyle) and during that time, the savings on grocery and finding better options for less has been one of the main and hottest topics here.
We all have to eat. We all want to eat better. And so that has been a main quest here on The Thrifty Couple.
As you all know… I was a HUGE Zaycon Fresh fan. I talked about it for many years. I talked about it for many years before Zaycon started paying bloggers to talk about them. Yes, a couple of years ago, Zaycon started paying bloggers to talk about their product and I was thankful that I finally got paid to tell you about something I loved and my talks were genuine because I talked about them 6 years before ever getting paid to tell you.
What happened to Zaycon Fresh?… In a tiny nutshell!
Zaycon Fresh was one of the most popular topics on our site. My friend, Mike, was a co-founder of Zaycon from many years ago and I will tell you the complete Zaycon Fresh story another time, but in summary, my friend Mike lost control of his company a few years ago. There were several of rounds of investors coming on board to run Zaycon and Mike was forced to give up control as the CEO in 2015, a few years before Zaycon closed.
You may have noticed when the change took place from owner to investor-owner because the name changed, the quality changed, frozen foods that were lower quality were introduced, the marketing changed (4 emails PER DAY!), the change in the delivery schedules that were once a rare occasion had become a norm and that was just from the customer side, but a lot of things changed on the inside from a cultural/morale standpoint. I talked to my friend Mike several times from 2015 to the closing in June of 2018. He was just an employee as the managing members/CEO/executives wanted him to still be the “face” of the company that hundreds of thousands had become familiar with. I would express my frustrations about what I was experiencing as a customer of Zaycon’s and Mike would take those to the current manager member/CEO and executives, but my requests and those of thousands of customers fell on deaf ears. So many times I would talk to Mike, especially about the quality and he agreed, but couldn’t do anything about it. It was sad.
Mike received the same notice as every other employee on June 25th, 2018. He lost his job like all of the other Zaycon Fresh employees.
If you all wish, I would love to have Mike come on a do a live video on our Facebook page to tell the story. I will even have a separate article with the full version in a larger nutshell.
June 27, 2018…An Idea
Zaycon Fresh announced their closure on June 25, 2018. It was a shock. It was a huge disappointment as they owed millions of refunds to customers (and if you haven’t gotten your money back yet, read this article and this article). Not only did they owe millions to customers, they owed thousands to bloggers everywhere, amongst the thousands owed to employees that lost their jobs (including my friend Mike).
Two days later, I tried to call Mike to see if I could find out what happened. Mike didn’t answer. Mike was receiving a flood of phone calls, including that of the news in the local Spokane area. Since Mike was the face of the company, even up until the closing, Mike was blamed for what happened when in reality, he hadn’t been in charge since 2015.
But Mike texted me after hearing my message and said, “I don’t know what happened. I lost my job too a couple of days ago. But I am told we are going to have a staff meeting to explain it.” That staff meeting really didn’t reveal much, but was more of a final farewell to the former employees. Mike to this day still is unsure of what Zaycon is doing. It’s not his decision or his company and hasn’t been for over 3 years.
Thus Enters My Partner
I couldn’t get anywhere with Mike because he just simply didn’t know. So I called the next person on my list – Erle Adams. Erle is a friend of Mike’s as well. I met Erle because he worked for Zaycon for 14 months from October 2016 – December of 2017. I came to know him quite well because he started and managed the blogger program for Zaycon. I talked with him frequently to have the most relevant and helpful information for our readers. I wanted to share the most accurate and helpful information as possible, so Erle became my contact. Like I mentioned earlier in my article, I was talking about Zaycon MANY YEARS before we got paid as bloggers. But when they started paying us, it was a very nice blessing for our family as I would talk about them anyway (which is how all of our articles are written – with the reader in mind).
So I got to know Erle pretty well. I asked Erle if he knew what had happened, even though he hadn’t worked for Zaycon in over 6 months. He didn’t know exactly, but I can say that when I was a blogger in communication with him regularly, I was complaining to Erle about all of these issues I saw as a customer hoping he could reach the executives and decision makers. He couldn’t either, but we both knew the reasons Zaycon closed because we predicted it many months before if the executives did not fix some basic operation issues (like quality, the schedule, and the barrage of emails to the customer). Not to mention the fact that Zaycon had trouble generating capital due to the lawsuit with a former investor-executive.
On that day, June 27th, 2018. I told Erle that even just two days after the closing, I had so many friends and readers that were disappointed and not sure where to get their meats now because the grocery store meats did not compare. I was one of those too! I hadn’t bought meat as a norm in the grocery stores in 8+ years! There were no reasonable alternatives. Everything else out there lacked something major whether it was the freshness and quality lacking from the grocery store, or the unbelievable high prices from some place like Butcher Box or Strauss Direct. Nothing compared. I told him that we both knew the model quite well and we both knew the problems that I bet we could do this ourselves and do it right, going back to what Zaycon originally was founded.
The First Step
We knew that there would likely be a great amount of interest. Zaycon was AMAZING at the beginning. Zaycon was still decent at the end except that they did lose some of the original principles that Mike had at the beginning – like putting the customer first!
After researching what we needed to get started, the first step was finding the interest to have “the power of group buying in bulk.”
Thus, I started a Community Bulk Meat Buying Co-op group on Facebook to gauge interest. This is where it started.
Did people want a Zaycon-like option back, but was MUCH better?
The answer is a resounding, “YES!”
And thus we had our first pilot test delivery in Northern Utah, where I currently live.
This is me with a new Savory Butcher customer – Fitness Blogger Marci Barker. Follow her on Instagram @Marcibarker.fast
And this first test was completely awesome! In fact, I was so happy to find out what others thought of the products we found. In fact, Emilie from ModMomLife on Instagram has a tab dedicated to The Savory Butcher, sharing all of her ideas for bulk meats. I would suggest following her as well and see what she has to say!
There are many more reviews, interviews, pictures and fun things, but those are just a few. Be sure to check out all of our social media to see even more.
Also, check out this video my 13-year old daughter made after our first test deliveries in Utah:
How The Savory Butcher is Different Than Zaycon Fresh
I LOVED Zaycon Fresh as you know. But I disliked some of the changes the executives made in the last few years of its existence. But even with those problems, I still loved it. But I wanted to make The Savory Butcher even better by eliminating those problems.
- The Savory Butcher’s products are ALL amazing quality and fresh. We have gone to the best farmers and best products. No more 1 lb frozen, sad, chubs of beef. Erle and I have tried hard to find the best for the best price again. The only exception would be if we offer seafood. That will be flash frozen (which I am sure we can all agree that seafood HAS to be frozen – even 24-hour old seafood is not good. :)). But that is a ways down the road anyway.
- Trimmed chicken!! One of my MOST favorite parts is that as a customer I HATED trimming the chicken. I did it because it was worth it, but it took me 2-3 hours just to trim 40 lbs of chicken. Well, we now have the best quality chicken that is now TRIMMED and 100% ready to be pulled out of the commercial bulk packaging and into your family’s preferred packaging. In fact, I made 12 freezer meals for my family of 8 (so 24 meals for the average family :)) in 15 minutes! No JOKE! It was seriously so awesome. Here are some pictures of those 12 double-sized meals – I have 7 varieties for a lot of variety in our diet too! This has been an amazing new change. Just check out the reviews on The Savory Butcher Facebook page.
You can also see this video on Instagram of me unboxing the chicken and showing how it is trimmed!
- We WILL offer organic chicken, 100% grass fed beef and uncured bacon. This was one thing I brought up to Zaycon quite a bit. They just didn’t think the market was there. I disagree! As a mom, I would LOVE to be able to feed my family these products for LESS than anywhere else. Yes, it will be at least twice the prices of the products currently offered, but that is still a lot less than those same products in the grocery and warehouse stores. I am working with organic farmers right now to have these products available in the near future.
- No need to pay weeks or months in advance! In fact, we order and pay for the product in full 10-days before we pick it up. However, for you, we open ordering the week we are delivering. We have already ordered and paid for it, so you know it is coming and this eliminates the risk to you! We are also working on an app that will allow you to pay the day you pickup if you want (as long as it isn’t sold out). I know that the risk of losing money like you might have with Zaycon is one of the biggest factors in someone deciding to participate in a similar model of group buying in bulk. So I am trying to take the risk as much as possible myself. But it also means that I would love for you to spread the word and help me sell the truckloads that I have already paid for! 🙂
- No spamming your email and text. Yes, I have email and texting to help stay in communication, but I will NOT email or text you multiple times a day! I will be respectful and only use it to tell you about the next sale in your area. We will have a blog page on our website that will also share lots of ideas and recipes, so you will receive our blog newsletter like any blog. 🙂 But I would encourage you to sign-up for email as we have you enter your zipcode and this helps us keep track of which areas we should make a priority to deliver to.
The Savory Butcher is a Community!
This is one of my favorite parts! The Savory Butcher is a community of like-minded moms and dads that want to provide the best for less for their families.
The Savory Butcher is a cooperative.
We are working towards the same goal and we can only achieve that goal TOGETHER. It takes the buying power of many to get a truck to the community to share in the discounted goods.
That’s where I need your help! Join our Community on Facebook, get involved in spreading the word, get involved in helping us find locations to bring a truck to the area and share in your experiences by leaving reviews on our social media accounts and online to help us see this cooperative grow and be a wonderful source and blessing for so many families across the country! I am also using the community to make decisions. With your help, this is a people’s meat cooperative company. This is YOUR company if you choose to be a part of the community. 🙂
Exactly HOW Does the Group Buying in Bulk Process Work?
Now that I have gone through the shortest version of the story and what makes The Savory Butcher an amazing new alternative to Zaycon Fresh, I thought it might be helpful to understand the whole process as a customer. If you are familiar with Zaycon Fresh, it is similar (but better because you don’t have to pay far in advance!).
Step #1 – Join our email list HERE so we have your zipcode to know the areas where the most interest lies
Step #2 – Check out the current delivery areas HERE (we usually only have a few open at one time, which is why being a part of the email list is important so you don’t miss when we are in your area).
Step #3 – If we are in your area next, chose the products you want to order and reserve your case(s) of meat.
Step #4 – Spread the word far and wide in your area in moms groups, church groups, yard sale groups, homeschool groups and community groups! Let your friends and family know we are coming! This is how we get to keep prices low!
Step #5 – Check the delivery schedule for your area. When you order, a refrigerated truck will be coming into a metropolitan area and make 4-6 stops in one day with the products for our community members in that area. We do not deliver to your home. It would dramatically increase the prices. Instead, we have you meet us on the delivery day at a specific location closest to your home to pick up your order. You will just drive up, stay in your car, and we will check you in and put your cases of meat in your car for you.
Step #6 – Share pictures, reviews or comments on our Social Media on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and in our Community Bulk Meat Buying Co-op group on Facebook.
Step #7 – If you have a concern, criticism, question or other comment, PLEASE email me at Cassie@SavoryButcher.com. I am learning and figuring out this process and want this to be the BEST option for families, but I only know of concerns or criticisms when you reach out to me personally to handle.
Share your thoughts and join me!
Now that you know a deeper history and story of The Savory Butcher than most, join me!
- Join me on our email list HERE with your zip code. Again, the way that we determine interest to come to the area with a truck is based on the zip codes and your email then allows us to let you know when we are coming.
- Join my Facebook Community Group HERE. This is a wonderful way to reach out to me, keep track of what I am doing, ask questions, see pictures and reviews and ideas on how to use the meats. This is a growing community of like-minded families that want to help each other.
- Follow us on Social Media – Facebook HERE, Instagram HERE, Twitter HERE, Pinterest HERE.
- Support our efforts by ordering and spreading the word!