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Buy meat online, but read this first

These days you can buy meat online, as with most other items listed on your grocery list. In recent years the option to buy meat online has become available to most South Africans because a variety of online butchers have popped up that offer a meat delivery service. Even though e-commerce in South Africa has been on a slow rise, it is on the rise and buying meat online for your cooking and braai is also gaining popularity.

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As with most e-commerce services, people have questions and things to consider when they are thinking of buying their meat online. Let’s dive into some of the most common things you should keep in mind before you choose your online butcher and place your first order for a braai.

Is it safe to buy meat online?

Yes. You can safely buy meat online as long as you use a reputable meat delivery service. There are obvious things to look out for, and most of those we will be covering below. As long as you do your research you can safely buy your meat on the internet. I would even go as far as to say that it’s just as safe as buying meat from your local land-based butchery.

Why do people buy meat online?

Our biggest commodity in 2018 is time, and buying meat online simply is a massive time saver. Instead of having to get in your car, dealing with traffic, finding a parking spot and then standing in a queue at the local butcher before you can get your meat, you can just take five minutes and buy your meat online with either your smartphone or your computer.

Most online butcheries also offer various packages of various meat and meat products, that takes some of the thinking out of making your purchase. As long as you know how much meat you or your family eats, there is likely a pre-packaged selection of meats that will suit your taste and your budget.

Is buying meat online affordable?

Yes. At the very least it is just as affordable as buying meat from your local butchery. You will immediately save money by having your meat delivered to your door. You will be saving money on fuel for your car and you will be saving at least 30 minutes of your day by not having to go to buy your meat at the grocer or the butcher.

Just like when you buy from your butcher or grocer, you get what you pay for. High-quality meat doesn’t often come at affordable prices. When you buy meat online it’s much easier to compare prices and products, without having to leave your home. In no time you will find the online meat vendor whose quality is the best in your opinion and who has product options that suit your’s and your family’s needs.

Where do I have to live to order my meat online?

That completely depends on the online butcher you decide to use. Some only cater to customers who buy meat online and reside in Gauteng, Pretoria, and Johannesburg. Other online butchers deliver throughout the whole South Africa. All those that deliver nationally generally have a 24-hour delivery service in main city centers across South Africa. When buying meat online you will soon realize that each online butcher has their own terms and conditions when it comes to where they deliver and delivery schedule.

Because meat has to stay cold during the whole shipping chain from vendor to your hands, it is important to find an online butcher that delivers where you live and takes the needed measures to ensure the meat stays cold until you receive it. Meat bought online is generally vacuum packed and in a polystyrene container with ice packs. Some of these can remain in the packaging for another six hours before having to be placed in the fridge or freezer. great if your meat is being delevired to your office. Others recommend immediately placing your meat in the fridge or freezer once it’s been delivered.

Make sure to do your research when selecting your online butcher, to find one that best caters to your needs.

How much does delivery cost?

Once again that depends on the meat delivery service. Some have a minimum price that includes free shipping. Sometimes there is a simple flat rate delivery cost that can range from R40 to R100. Even if there is a delivery fee, the fee is normally very affordable.

Where does the meat I buy online come from?

Just like land-based butchers they all source the meat that they sell differently. A reputable online meat retailer will explain on their website where their meat is sourced from and would be more than happy to answer any questions that you have by either email or phone call. They will also list on their site whether meats are Halaal or banting-friendly.

What kinds of meat can I buy online?

Beef, lamb, chicken and pork. Steaks, mince meat, hamburger patties, wors biltong and droëwors. Some even have speciality meats like Cabanossi, hams, salamie and other imported meats like chorizo. Just like any butcher, some have a wider selection of cuts and meats. Luckily good online butheries have their full range of products listed on their websites.

Is it worth it to buy meat online?

If you are anything like me and you also hate the idea of driving to a butcher or grocer to buy meat, then buying meat online is for you. Just like buying meat online is for me. Anything that can help me avoid queues and crowded shopping centers is worth it in my mind. It will take some experimentation and maybe a bit of research, but it pays off in the long run. When you buy meat online you will ultimately take some of the time back you can spend doing anything else, like having a braai.

Combine buying your meat online with a service that can deliver firewood, firelighters, booze, and ice. You’ve basically go no reason not to invite your friends or family over for a braai. And when the conversation inevitably turns to meat, you can school eveyone on why they should buy meat online: “I put meat on my braai, by ordering meat online.”

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