The Butcher's Guild
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First My history.. I came from a restaurant owning family and decided some 23 years ago that being a meat cutter was the way to go.. After all, most meat cutters were then making high wages, and providing for their families in a way that was envious.

I worked my way from a deli clerk to a meat clerk, meat wrapper to meat cutter, journeyman cutter, second man, department manager. I did all of this early in my career. I have worked in several states and with several companies in my 23 years. These days I am back to being "just a cutter"..

I wish I could say that any one company has met with my expectations and high standards.. You see, I am one of the lucky who was first taught that customers come first and that your cutting, your workspace, your meat shop, your attitude, it is all a representation of your craftsmanship. I was taught that I was a craftsman and everything I put forth represented who I am as a journeyman, who I am as a person.

Journeyman..... That is a word that I feel has been lost in our industry.

These days I work for a company in Minnesota that forces us to miss label cuts in order to sell overstock, we continuously rework expired product two and three times over till its some abomination of a sausage or meatloaf that I believe isn't fit for human consumption. Daily it's the expectation that expired retail products get the dates scrubbed off and replaced with an extra week. Too often is it the norm that meeting outrageous margin demands, causes a society within our ranks that not only accepts failure to do the right thing, but promotes and rewards those who are the most willing to cheat and lie to the point of putting human health at risk.

These days I have given up on the dream that I can be a true Journeyman, One who cuts what I would be proud to sell to my family and neighbors, one who holds the traditions of respecting the animal correctly as well as teaching my customers how to do this themselves.

Sadly, I must continue to work in the industry that I now despise and I will continue to put out expired, sub par meat that I wouldn't sell to my greatest enemy.
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Chef_JP private msg quote post Address this user
Don't lose your integrity. Find an employer who values it as much as you do.
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memays private msg quote post Address this user
it’s people like you who will push our industry to where it needs to be. never give up.
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BobbieJo private msg quote post Address this user
You don't have to work that way if you work at our business.

We're not far from you. Story City Locker is in Central Iowa.

If you ever have a willingness to relocate, you should give us an opportunity to visit with you!

Your passion is admirable; if attention to your personal time equals your career focus, you're a force of integrity! Best of luck to you.
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