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How much Venison should I have gotten back ? - Walleye Message Central
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  #1  
Old 11-17-2006, 12:07 PM
Gull Lake Guy Gull Lake Guy is offline
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Location: Andover, Minnesota, Anoka.
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Default How much Venison should I have gotten back ?

Until I hear back from the owner of the meat market, I am not going to name names, but I need some info from those who know more than I do. On Moday morning, I dropped of a doe for processing that several hunters estimated had a live weight of 140 -150 lbs. The meat market did all of the cutting / skinning. I requested a 15 lb. bag of scrap, and the backstraps / tenderloins left whole. The remaining deer was to be divided between polish sausage, deer stick, and summer sausage. When I picked it up yesterday aftenoon, I was given the bag of scraps (15 lbs) and the backstraps (7 lbs), along with 8 lbs of summer sauage, 4 lbs of polish, and 6 lbs of stick. By my math, if 30% of the processed meat is added pork, that translates to approximately 36 lbs of actual venison meat. I was told that the deer had "front shoulder damage", which I find difficult to believe given the 40 yard shot with a 150 grain Core-Lok bullet was a clean thru heart shot. I will not (maybe later) go into the conversation I had last evening with the owner of the meat market, but he got EXTREMELY upset when I questioned the amount of venison I received, and making full use of the "Salty Sea Captains" vocabulary classes he must have attended. I did not accuse anyone of anything, and I trust he will look into this and call me back (his words to me). I do not believe that I received all of my meat, but I have no reason to think they would "short" me. How much should I have gotten, and what should I do ??? THANKS
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  #2  
Old 11-17-2006, 01:09 PM
Unlogged T-Mac
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Default RE: How much Venison should I have gotten back ?

Now, I have done my share of hanging around game processor shops in the past and....yours is a somewhat common situation.
I think almost every shop that gets into wild game cutting runs into it.
The other thing is ...(I hate to say it, but)who knows who's meat and from what deer you got????

I cut my own wild game. I'd rather. I bone it all, anyway. Besides I know what I want in a package. Then I take my scraps in ...they weigh it...then they make the burger, sausage, etc. I get what ever I brought in concerning the burger, at least...because I watch 'em grind it.

Some guys would say...you did well because your bill was lower and the way it ended up....you don't have so doggone much deer meat to eat. (Montana humor there...most of us out here, eventually get pretty burnt out on venison).

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  #3  
Old 11-18-2006, 12:54 AM
walleye710 UL
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Default RE: How much Venison should I have gotten back ?

Depends on a few things. 1. How good of a job the butcher did boning out your meat. 2. The angle of your shot (even though you took out the heart, it could have taken out the opposite side front leg and much of the shoulder, especially if you hit the bone) 3. What the deer really weighed and where you live. An average whitetail doe will generally weigh 130-150lbs. In some parts of the country, a 150 doe is quite large and in other parts of the country, it is just average. 4. How good of a job the butcher did getting your own deer meat back to you. Many times when you ask for sausage or other products like that, they just throw your meat in with the boned out meat of a few others then rely on their weight (in some cases, a best guess) of your boned out meat when figuring out what to give you back. Some butchers will work with your own meat, that is bone out what you have, process it, and insure you get only that meat back. Others just mix it all together and portion yours back out when the final product is finished.

Many times over the years, I have wondered if I got all of mine back. Sometimes I was pretty sure I didn't. When questioned about my apparent shortage of meat, I had once butcher tell me once that the deer I brought in had 5 bullet holes in it. I have never shot a deer that many times.

What you got back seems a little light to me. It has been my experience that 40-50lbs of boned out meat from an average doe is about normal. Check out the table below. It is from the NDSU extension service.

Table 1. Average weight of various stages of
processing.
----------------------------------------------------
Whole Field
Species Body* Dressed** Carcass***
----------------------------------------------------
--------- Pounds ----------
Whitetail Deer 148 115 96
----------------------------------------------------
*Whole body is the weight of the entire animal minus
blood lost during harvest.
**Field dressed is the whole body weight minus the
entrails.
***Carcass is the field dressed weight minus head,
legs and hide (skins and feathers).

Table 2. Average yield of lean edible tissue of
game animals by various stages of processing.
---------------------------------------------------
Whole Field
Species Body* Dressed** Carcass***
---------------------------------------------------
-------- Percent --------
Whitetail Deer 51.7 61.1 71.6
---------------------------------------------------
*Whole body is the weight of the entire animal
minus blood lost during harvest. Example: If a
whitetail deer weighed 200 pounds, then 200 x
51.7% = 103.4 pounds of edible lean boneless tissue.
**Field dressed is the whole body weight minus the
entrails. Example: If a whitetail deer dressed 150
pounds, then 150 x 61.1% = 91.6 pounds of edible
lean boneless tissue.
***Carcass is the field dressed weight minus head,
legs and hide (skins and feathers). Example: If a
whitetail carcass weighed 100 pounds, then 100 x
71.6% = 71.6 pounds of edible lean boneless tissue.
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  #4  
Old 11-20-2006, 09:12 AM
Gull Lake Guy Gull Lake Guy is offline
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Location: Andover, Minnesota, Anoka.
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Default RE: How much Venison should I have gotten back ?

Thanks for the great info. I received a call back from one of the cutters at the meat market. He said he remembered my deer, because it was the only one that he cut that had the backstraps left whole. However, he did not recall the front shoulder damage that was noted on the their tag. Interesting ??? He also mentioned that alot of the deer they have received this year had quite a bit of fat on them, reducing the amount of meat. I will agree that this deer had a rather thick layer of fat, but I have only gutted 5 deer in my life, so my comparisons are limited. We both agreed that "shorting" me would not seem to benefit anyone - the more meat I get the more I pay. I had already decided to "turn the page" and consider this a learning experience, vowing to take in only trimmed meat that I had weighed prior to processing. The conversation ended with an interesting offer, and one that I will absolutely not accept. He said they had "several" deer that were left for cutting and processing that now were unwanted by the persons that left them. They had both steaks and chops that I could have, either as is or processed into sausage. I would never knowingly accept someone elses deer, and find it rather strange that someone would go to the trouble of bringing a deer in for cutting and processing, and then refuse it. I have decided to take the 15 lb. bag of scraps to another market for sausage and some hamburger, and hope the muzzleloader season provides me an opportunity to get some additional venison. Again, thanks for the reply.
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  #5  
Old 11-20-2006, 03:25 PM
butch 1
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Default RE: How much Venison should I have gotten back ?

I always process my own deer I live in Upper Michigan and it has been my observation that if you get 30 to 40 pounds of meat of an average size deer you are doing really good. If you get a good size deer you can expect to increase that amount by about a third. If you get a really big deer then you can increase by about two thirds. So where I live the average sized one and a half year old deer weighs about 110 field dressed. a good sized deer will run about 140 to 150 and a big deer is about 170 to 190. these weights are all field dressed weights.
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  #6  
Old 11-20-2006, 07:56 PM
RDJ unlogged
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Default RE: How much Venison should I have gotten back ?

My findings over the years would lead me to believe your returned venison and goodies weighed in about right.
The boned out meat of butchered animals should be right around 1/3 of their live weight. At least this is what my father always told me (carry over info from his days of butchering cattle and game) and cutting my own game has confirmed that info. With that said, a 150# live weight deer should produce about 50# of boned meat. Now take into account trimming of fat, connective tissue, and even a small amount of bullet damage and it is not at all hard to believe in losing 5#-10# to the garbage bucket. That puts you in the 40#-45# range of trimmed, boned meat.
You said you had 15# of grind meat (I assume chunks to be ground), 7# of back strap (22# total so far). Now figure it took about 9# of venison to make the 12# of sausage with 30% pork add (31# total now) and it probably took 10#-12# of lean venison to make the 6#'s of snack stix as most places use no fat or very little (10% at most) in Slim Jim/jerky type products. With sausage or salami products you will gain weight on your venison contribution but with snack stix/jerky you will get 50%-60% back in finished product because of the high degree of dehydration and no added meat/fats to this type of product. So, with all that said. 15#+7#+9#+(10-12#)= 41#-43# worth of venison used. I think this sounds about right for an average sized deer. As you said in your follow up, these game processor's have no reason to short you. They are shorting their till at the end of the day if they do. And besides, most of the guys I know that cut meat for a living have no interest in venison for themselves by the end of hunting season..
As T-mac said, this is good motivation to start cutting your own game up. There are some great instructional pieces out there to help get you started. For the types of cuts your looking for, the work and expertise need are minimal and you get the satisfaction of knowing where all of your hard earned venison went. Good luck and good hunting, RJ in Montana...
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  #7  
Old 11-22-2006, 10:00 PM
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Sven Sven is offline
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Default RE: How much Venison should I have gotten back ?

I have thought the same thing at times, it just doesn't seem like enough meat. I do the same a T-Mac and de-bone all my deer, if your patient enough you just wait until early Elk season next August and take it in then. Who knows maybe you will get Elk sausage. HA
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  #8  
Old 11-23-2006, 01:31 AM
reelman2
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Default RE: How much Venison should I have gotten back ?

I just got done cutting up the two deer I shot this past weekend. They were both probably around 100lbs. dressed. I used 1 gallon zip-lock bags to put the meat in and here is what I got out of 2 deer total:
3 bags (stuffed) of "stew meat" mainly from the back quarters.
3 bags (1 layer each) of back straps butterflyed
6 bags(stuffed) of ground meat.
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  #9  
Old 11-23-2006, 12:13 PM
jt custom unlogged
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Default RE: How much Venison should I have gotten back ?

I am responding to your post because I feel it won't go into a bash fest. I am in the retail meat business and process wild game in the fall. When processing an animal many factors come into play. Where was the it shot? how was it handled when gutted? bladder,utters,gut shot. Was the carcass rinsed? How many days ago was the animal taken? We don't know this . When I open the carcass up most of the time I can visualize exactly how it was handled.
When I cut these animals anything dark,dried,full of debris and blood shot is discarded. If the tenderloin's are not pulled at the time it's gutted most of the time there won't much to save. Absolutely none of the interior meat is saved ie-rib cage etc. Too much bacteria. It's all done boneless (chops, steaks and roasts).
The average doe will yield aprox a 1/4 -1/3 full size grocery bag of cuts and I would avg the trim at 20-25 lbs if both shoulders were in good shape. Like I said many factors come into play when processing deer being in minnesota our deer seem to be of pretty good size.
We always process deer one at a time. Our hunters get there own cuts back and have the option to have mixed batch sausage or sigle batch w/ your own meat. Believe it or not I would guess that 95% of our customers go with mixed batch ( we have always had an open door policy for you to come and see how these deer are trimmed and and how the process goes from a-z). If a processor does the above the result is a lessor yield but ultimately a better product.
I would guess that you recieved the right amount of meat from your deer from what you have explained. hopefully this clears some things up.
T-MAC if you have had some of larry's sausage at the ottertail dealer meeting a couple of years ago, well you were eating some of the work from my shop. As a matter of fact I do larry's wild game every year.

Happy thanksgiving !

jon tennessen
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  #10  
Old 11-27-2006, 04:35 PM
Gull Lake Guy Gull Lake Guy is offline
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Default RE: How much Venison should I have gotten back ?

Thanks for the reply Jon. Please provide me with your contact info, either on this thread or a private e-mail, so I (or others) can frequent the businesses of those nice enough provide answers to our questions.
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