Allow Me to Introduce You To…Zaycon Foods
Note: Alas, my vegetarian friends, Zaycon is not for you. There *will* be pictures of raw meat, so feel free to skip this post entirely. My feelings won’t be hurt, I promise!
Yesterday I was talking to some folks on Twitter about Foodsavers and buying things in bulk. I confessed that while I own a Foodsaver, I rarely use it, the exception being when I recently froze 20 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breast. The reactions were mixed, but mostly centered around: Why the heck would I have 20 pounds of anything, and also…where did I get it?
The answer is Zaycon, which sounds like Optimus Prime’s long-lost brother but is actually more like Costco, without the need for a retail front. I first read about them on the blog I Heart Publix (previously mentioned on RH’s Blogs That Rock: Money Edition), so I figured they were legitimate. If I’d heard about it elsewhere, I’d probably be leery of their quality and maybe even open to the possibility of it being a scam.
But a scam they are not. Basically, you register with the site, they send an e-mail with the date, location and what product they’ll have, you buy the item online (it’s only one at a time), then pick it up on the requested date/site. It’s that simple. And the prices are obscene.
Obscenely low: boneless, skinless chicken breast for $1.49/lb (typically on sale at Publix for $3.49) and 93/7 lean ground beef for $2.89/lb (again the Publix sale price is usually $3.99). To offer prices that low, Zaycon only sells in bulk, usually in increments of 40 pounds. That’s a lot of meat, so you’ll likely end up not only splitting with a friend, but freezing it as well.
Here’s my friend’s portion of chicken, before she prepped it (like I said, I used my Foodsaver, but unfortunately forgot to snap a pic)…
…and after (she opted to freeze some as-is and marinate others, wisely labeling each one for future identification).
The ground beef came in 4 large logs, so to speak:
Each log was 10 pounds, which I separated into 12 packets that weighed a little under a pound each.
Hubby then tightly wrapped each disc of meat in tin foil, then popped them into plastic bags. Our final stack came out like this:
That’s alotta meat!
The takeaway: If you have the space to freeze meat, I highly recommend this site. It’s very easy to use, good quality, and when I had a question, customer service was quick to respond.
- The times are usually during the week, in half-hour windows, at somewhat-inconvenient times (the first one was 12:30p, the next 3:30p). Make sure you allow for that when scheduling your location (perhaps one closer to your work as opposed to your home, for example).
- If you’re going to split with a friend, make sure you have a plan worked out on how everyone will get their share. I originally thought I would be able to bring my co-worker her portion of the ground beef into work, but when I actually got a look at it, I realized it was way too big to schlep around, so now I’m going to drop it off at her house.
- There WILL be prep work involved. The chicken came in 4 big ol’ bags; we had to cut the breasts into 2 and re-package them, a very messy business. And the meat had to be chopped into smaller portions before it could be frozen, as you saw above.
- Zaycon’s home page says they also offer turkey, pork, fish and even fruit, but I haven’t seen them yet. There was briefly talk of a bacon event, but it was squashed and replaced with the beef.
- I’m never sure how people feel about affiliate links, so the above post is affiliate-free. However, if you’d like me to get the $1 referral bonus, please use this link to register. No pressure, just thought I’d throw it out there.
If you have any questions, I’m happy to answer them.