27 June 2007
How Much Does It Cost To Have A Bear Processed In & Shipped From Juneau, Alaska?
One of the questions that no one could answer for me before embarking on my recent Spring Bear hunt in Alaska was “How much does it cost to have a bear processed and shipped to me in Missouri?” I’m not sure why no one had the answer. Apparently, I asked the obvious but wrong people. But, anyway, I now have the answer!
I took a nice bear on June 1. Begining on June 1, the state of Alaska no longer requires hunters to save the meat (from season opening through May 31 you are required to take the meat). I wanted that meat, though. So we skinned and quartered the bear at the site of the kill and then put it on ice (actually snow we shoveled) for the trip back to Juneau. Once in Juneau, we dropped the meat (the four quarters and backstraps) off at Jerry’s Meats.
I asked to have all the meat, other than the backstraps, made into summer sausage and pepperoni. The backstraps I would have cleaned and frozen for grilling. I dropped the meat off on June 5. On June 26, Scott, the owner of Jerry’s Meats called me and said my bear was processed and ready for shipping. He just needed a credit card number for payment and the meat would be on its way.
So, now I also know how long it takes to have a bear processed. Aproximately 3 weeks. Not bad! I usually process my own meat locally, but I know guys that use processors and often have to wait several weeks to two months or more to get their meat back.
Scott, the owner (or manager) of Jerry’s Meats is a nice guy. He was gone when I originally dropped the meat off – so I hadn’t spoken with him previously. I did send him an email a few days ago asking about the status of my meat and if he’d be willing to ship it to me (originally I thought that Keegan, my outfitter, might have to pick it up and ship it to me). Scott informed me that he would take care of everything and he actually chatted with me for a few minutes about my hunt. He had looked at my blog and knew all about my hunt. I was impressed and flattered!
I’ve been curious about the cost of processing a bear, how much meat I would have, and how much it would cost to ship it from Alaska to Missouri. Now, only 3 weeks after dropping it off, I received my answer!
The total cost was $448.01, of which $229 was the FEDEX Overnight Delivery shipping cost. I received 85lbs of meat, which included 15 lbs of Pepperoni and 59 lbs of Summer Sausage. Not too bad, since the meat I dropped off for processing was around 100lbs (with bones).
The processing cost was really reasonable and I had already expected the shipping to be considerable due to the distance shipped and the need to have it overnighted. Jerry’s Meats did an excellent job of packing the boxes and it arrived in two foam lined boxes on dry ice. Wow!
So, the processing and shipping of my bear meat cost me a total of $448 or aproximately $5.27 per pound. That’s probably less than the price of summer sausage at a store. I can’t imagine the rationale behind leaving the meat behind, as some hunters do. I can’t wait to try the meat and I’ll let you know how it tastes!