6 years ago I had no idea that I would be in the meat stick business…. Literally not on my radar at all. At the same time 6 years ago when we were struck with the idea of making a better version of one of our favorites, I would have 99% of the time had the "healthiest version" of meat snack in our fridge that I thought were available. I would have packed them in my husbands lunch, put then in a cooler for play dates and picnics etc. I was part of the majority of the population that truly believed I was making a healthy choice for me and my family. I mean im not a monster I wasn’t gong to give my children too many sugar laden, additive riddled snacks…..but I kind of was. Crap. Against my best intentions I really was. And after some more research on my end I got to work on cleaning up our diet. And that is how we got started with BUFF. After months of research and taste testing we found a company that would work with our recipe and made what we believe to be the best tasting snack sticks on the market. And aside from the taste and our premium ingredients – did I mention BUFF is fermented???? Fermented foods was the #1 food trend for 2018. Who knew!? We were doing it long before it was cool!! I always pictured fermented foods in glass jars, kombucha jugs etc. Boy did I learn a lot.
Let talk about why fermented is different.
Fermented foods are foods that have been through a process of lactofermentation in which natural bacteria feed on the sugar and starch in the food creating lactic acid. This process preserves the food, and creates beneficial enzymes, b-vitamins, Omega-3 fatty acids, and various strains of probiotics.
“Long before preservative chemicals were introduced into manufacturing, meats and other perishables had to be either salt-cured or fermented in order to preserve them. Both are highly effective at keeping pathogenic bacteria and fungi from growing and eventually spoiling our foods. Though fermented meat may be the healthiest route forward, finding these products may not be all that easy. Meat fermentation takes much longer to develop an edible food product. The process also requires having a microbiology lab to continually assess and monitor the bacterial population.” (Tetro, 2017)
“Fermenting meat, like all other forms of fermentation, is an ancient practice. People did not always know that what they were doing to preserve the excess meat from large animal killings was fermentation; they only knew that it worked and it was delicious. For years and years, people had salted their meat to preserve it by removing moisture and making the meat uninhabitable for bad bacteria. But people began to discover that salt dug from some places contained nitrates, which they found not only would turn the meat a pleasant pink color, but would also impart an interesting new flavor that became very popular. This was the result of fermentation that had taken place in the meat, encouraged by the nitrates in the salt used in the preserving processes.” (Lacto-Fermenting Meat And Fish: Part One, 2017)
There is a ton of literature out there on the benefits of fermented foods, more so on the veggie side but more and more being generated on the meat side. The difference is there are very few companies using this process. Why? Its time consuming, science driven and has to follow very strict guidelines. Things that don’t appeal to many big companies. But is a priority for us. Our small batch BUFF sticks will not disappoint. See we just gave you another reason to love BUFF!!!
Lacto-Fermenting Meat And Fish: Part One. (2017, March 20). Retrieved from Cultures for Health: https://www.culturesforhealth.com
Tetro, J. (2017). Fermented meats are good for you and they even taste good, too. The Globe and Mail.