Meat+Poultry - October 2020 - 28

S P E C I A L T Y M E AT S

BL ACK
FOREST
bacon

Buffalo Gal produces game bacon that has won
multiple awards and accolades through the years
BY B O B S I M S | b s i m s @ s o s l a n d.c o m

M

28

MEAT+ POULTRY | 10.20 | www.meatpoultry.com

TRULY WILD
Raising the Eurasian wild boar pays off with a bacon voted
Best "wild" Bacon by Fox News in 2017 and one of the "Best
Bacons Known to Man" in 2020 by men's lifestyle website
"The Manual," but it didn't start with bacon. Fogel began
raising the Eurasian wild boars over 40 years ago. Originally,
he sold them to game preserves for hunts.
"Ted Nugent had a game preserve in Michigan, and we'd
sell wild boar over there," Fogel said. "We'd send a semi at
a time and we got pretty big in it, but that market just dried
up. I was grandfathered in [to raise the Eurasian wild boar].
I didn't want to quit because if I quit, they could never be on
our ranch again. So, I stuck it out. We went through a period
where they would come and check on me and check my
fences and everything. Now they know what we're doing and
leave us alone."
Once the game preserve and hunt market dried up, Fogel
pivoted and moved to the wild boar meat market.

Buffalo Gal

ike Fogel owns and operates Buffalo Gal Inc. from
the grounds of the Money Creek Buffalo Ranch
in Houston, Minn. For the ranch's contribution to
the gourmet bacon market, Fogel raises Eurasian wild boar
originally from the Black Forest, also known as the Russian
boar. They are not the feral pigs known for causing trouble.
"A lot of what they call wild boar is actually feral swine
that are just domestic animals that have gone wild," Fogel
said. "Unfortunately, the government, when they did the
labeling laws, called them all wild boar, which they're not."
While the general wild boar all lumped together get
blamed for wrecking habitat and killing deer among
other things, Fogel said ranchers and farmers raising the
authentic Eurasians do so for the meat and pay close
attention to the boars, their housing and containment,
health, etc.
"They're valuable. You're not going to just let them run
wild if you've got a lot invested in them."


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Meat+Poultry - October 2020

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