Home » Smokehaus Meats Prepares for Addition of Processing Plant

Smokehaus Meats Prepares for Addition of Processing Plant

by Shanine Sealey
Smokehaus meat processing plan

Trent and Tanya Ens, owners/operators of Smokehaus Meats & Deli in Martensville, are no strangers to the meat industry. Since opening the doors of Smokehaus 11 years ago, the couple has seen an incredible amount of growth and has quadrupled their number of employees in order to keep up with the demand. Since its inception, Smokehaus Meats has grown from being in an 1800 square foot building, growing to 7000 square feet and is consistently making new products and options for their faithful customers.
The newest addition to their business is the purchase of an 11.5 acre farm where they are currently building a meat processing plant. This plan has been in place since Trent and Tanya moved to Martensville from Swift Current where they owned a processing/retail meat shop. “We weren’t able to build the whole thing at once, and the two different sides of the business, one being slaughter and cutting, the other side being retail, they don’t go well together in the same building. It works really well to have them in two separate locations, so we have been building this location in town up until now. Now it’s time to build the plant and then have the two of them working together,” Trent Ens explained. Location for the new state of the art slaughter and cutting plant was the biggest hurdle to jump; however, earlier this year, the perfect location became available just north of Martensville on Highway 12.
The new plant will process domestic livestock that is purchased from local farmers, as well as processing of customer’s domestic livestock. Supporting local farmers and the local economy has always been an important concept for the two, who have always provided local meat options for their customers. “Saskatchewan has the best livestock available, and it doesn’t make sense to us to import meat in from somewhere else just to cut costs. You get what you pay for and although you may be able to find it for a cheaper cost; you are getting a lower quality product and that is not something that we are interested in doing,” added Trent.
The addition of the new plant will provide numerous advantages to the customers of Smokehaus. They will now be able to get their livestock custom cut and wrapped according to their preference. Customers will also have local high quality, fresh cut meat options available for purchase within the retail store, eventually with more domestic deer, elk and bison options offered, along with more competitive prices. Additionally, customers will be able to utilize the custom processing options that are currently being offered on wild meat, for their cattle and hogs, etc. “If people are under the impression that local costs more, I think they will be pleasantly surprised to see that it actually costs less to buy local if it is done properly. This plant will allow us an efficiency to sell local meat and sell local cut and wrapped products for less money than the grocery stores,” Trent said.
The new facility will consist of a 5000 square foot space, with an additional 3000 square foot compost barn, which contains a 60 foot long in vessel composter. This equipment will take all of the animal material that isn’t used for food and turn it into high quality soil amendment for gardens. After spending an ample amount of time researching waste disposal, the environmentally friendly option stood out to the couple. “In any other scenario, you are looking for other options for disposal; whether it is trucking it away, landfill, incinerating it, burying it, or whatever nasty method you are using to get rid of that waste, it is still waste. In this scenerio, there is no waste. We will start testing the machine soon and we are looking forward to firing it up,” Ens said.
By the end of 2017, the construction of the new plant will be complete, with January being set aside to set up and test equipment and an official operation start date set for the second week of February. Although the plant is not available yet, Trent noted that customers can begin booking their livestock in as of right now by calling the Martensville Smokehaus Meats location. All wildmeat will continue to be processed at the Martensville location.
At the new facility, every animal will be inspected both antemortem (live) and postmortem (carcass) by the on-site meat inspector. Inspection service will be provided by Sask Agriculture.
Speaking with Ens, he noted that the project would not be possible without the hard work of all of their employees and the trades involved, as their dedication and precision has kept things running on track. “Between Nienhuis Contracting, Martensville Plumbing, Country West Builders, Pete’s Electric, Thiessen Bros. Construction and all of the sub-trades, they have been doing an excellent job and it looks fantastic. Tanya and I are so appreciative to them for helping things go smoothly, as this is a big undertaking for us, so to know that it is being handled the way it is, gives us peace of mind.”
For more information on Smokehaus Meats, visit www.smokehaus.ca, call (306) 955-9791, or follow them on Facebook at ‘Smokehaus Meats’. “For Tanya and I, this is full circle to where we started in the meat business in Swift Current. When we came here, it was hard for us to leave the processing for someone else and not be able to do it ourselves. For us to now be able to offer a start to finish service for retail and custom processing is something we have wanted to do for the past eleven years. We want to be able to provide complete service, whatever the customer needs,” said Ens.

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