Poultry Shrink Bags: Why You Should Use Them
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If you butcher and process homegrown birds at home, you should know that poultry shrink bags are about the most awesome thing to come along since…well…I don’t know what. Poultry shrink bags are easy. They’re quick. They’re amazing.
I thought I knew a whole bunch about processing animals. I grew up in a hunting family and y’all, I knew how to wrap up a cut of meat. Freezer paper and I? We were totally BFF.
So, when my husband and I moved to a farm and started processing animals we’d raised, I was ahead of the game. I knew what I was doing.
But then my husband followed a rabbit hole on the internet and discovered poultry shrink bags and the folks at Texas Poultry Shrink Bags. After reading reviews and watching their video, we decided we’d try them out.
You guys, when it comes to processing chickens…I think I’m gonna have to break up with freezer paper.
Where do we get our poultry shrink bags?
We placed our order with Texas Poultry Shrink Bags, which is run by a gentleman named Tanner. It turns out that Tanner is a young gent—involved in 4H, FFA, and shooting sports—and Texas Poultry Shrink Bags is his business.
The bags shipped fast. I ordered on a Saturday and had them Tuesday. We processed our birds the very next day and let me tell you, those bags are tough. We didn’t have to worry about puncturing through them or ripping them. Our biggest bird was nearly 7 pounds and it fit in the 10×16 bag.
Note: Poultry shrink bags are popular. Do not wait until the week before butchering to order them. In the height of butchering season, it’s very common to find these on back order. Plan ahead, farmish folk. Plan ahead.
How to use a poultry shrink bag:
So, here’s what you do with a Texas poultry shrink bag:
Put your clean bird into the bag, neck end in first.
Place the tubing into the cavity of the chicken, twist the bag, and zip tie the bag closed around the tubing. (Zip ties and tubing included with order; we cut additional tubing so we could make an assembly line.)
Dip the bag in 180-195 degree water for five seconds.
Remove bag from the water and wait ten seconds while the bag shrinks around the chicken. After ten seconds have passed, pull the tube out, and tighten the zip tie.
Dry the bags off, cut off the extra plastic near the top (by the zip tie), weigh, label (Tanner has those, too, but I forgot them), and stick them in your freezer.
How to use poultry shrink bags…in action!
Here’s everything in action in our YouTube video: Using Texas Poultry Shrink Bags
We were so pleased with the results and have had many people tell us that our birds look so professional this year. They say, “my goodness…who processed and packaged them?”
I get to smile and say, “We did.”
…with lots of help from Tanner at Texas Poultry Shrink Bags.
Butchering soon? Check out these other articles I’ve written:
Do you homeschool? So do we! Check out my book — The Homeschool Highway: How to Navigate Your Way Without Getting Carsick.
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