Just went to a farmers market for the first time. Trying to support local, east grass-fed and transition to the paleo lifestyle of eating. One of the stands was selling meat and I said hit me with two packages of bacon please! When I got home and looked at the package, I was disappointed to see these ingredients:
I guess I had a fantasy that I would be getting "off the farm" bacon without these additives that I can find in my local grocery store.
What gives? Should I just stick with Applegate Farms?
Do you want to switch to uncured or do you want cured? Because Applegate and other "naturally" cured bacons usually have celery salts that are chemically equivalent to sodium nitate. You can get salt-cured bacon, but it's hard to find. You can buy it online. Totally uncured bacon is the best choice IMHO, but you are going to need to learn how to talk to butchers and accept that it doesn't keep very well. I ask my butchers to do thinly sliced belly/uncured bacon (the same thing) and vacuum pack it in .5 lb packages so I can freeze it easily. I have the power to ask for those things because I buy in very large quantities that I share with my friends and family- half and whole pigs. You can try asking this farmer for a custom order of that. Or keep shopping around.
It's out there, you just need to shop around the farmers market.
I, too, wish that everything at the farmers market was perfect for me, but all the fresh bread sellers there shoot that idea down.
Another thought, if you ask the farmers for nitrate-free uncared bacon, they can specify to their slaughterhouse how much of each kind of bacon to turn out next time.
Make your own! The NYTimes just wrote an awesome article on the topic and I can't wait to try it.
Edit: He also says not to worry about nitrates because they break down to nitrite which has health benefits for your heart.
yea, unfortunately, not all the farmer's at the farmer's market sell uncured bacon. i roamed mine and checked all the stands before i settled on one. i now either go with that one (which unfrtounately is $16 a lb) or i just get uncured bacon from TJ's. it may not be pastured/happy bacon, but since i don't eat bacon that much, i think it's ok...
I had the same heartbreak recently, canadian version (the name brands are maple leaf and Schneiders)
wrote about it on my blog http://www.paleoasis.com/2012/03/breaking-news-about-bacon.html
the completely chemical free version which I now buy frozen from a farmer - tastes really different (I have to add tons of salt for the same yum feeling).
Not sure where you live but you can check www.eatwild.com to find local farmers or co-ops. I was lucky and found just about everything I need from a local co-op wallace farms http://www.wallacefarms.com/ .
Steaks are $10 each, hamburger $5 lb , pastured bacon either 5 or $7 don't remember.