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It's no secret that Iowa is known for its amazing meat.

The state's rich agricultural history, ample forage and grains, and high quality breeding stock has led to some of the best tasting meat in the United States.
And ChopLocal makes it easy for you to find Iowa beef, Iowa pork, Iowa turkey, Iowa lamb, and Iowa chicken.
Not in Iowa? No problem! Order Iowa meat online and have it delivered to your door!

Iowa's Local Food Scene

From the Mississippi River to the Missouri River and everywhere in-between, farmland stretches as far as the eye can see. While many of these farms raise corn and soybeans (Iowa ranks #1 in production of corn, soybeans and ethanol), many others raise livestock like beef cattle, pigs (pork), chickens (eggs) and turkeys.
Although Iowa is definitely known for its large livestock farms (the state ranks #1 for pork and egg production), Iowa is also a mecca for local foods!
There are over 200 farmers markets in the state, which has 99 counties and is the 31st most populous of the 50 states, signaling the importance of local foods to Iowa residents as well as Iowa farmers.

The Downtown Des Moines Farmers Market celebrated its 48th season in 2023 and is widely considered one of the best farmers markets in the country!
The state also recently revitalized the Choose Iowa program to expand support for local foods in the Hawkeye State.

But you don't have to visit the farmers market to find local meats from farms in Iowa!

Many Iowa farms, especially since the Covid pandemic, sell their meat online, and ChopLocal is currently home to nearly two dozen Iowa meat farms and butcher shops, including Iowa beef farms, Iowa pork farms, Iowa turkey farms, Iowa chicken farms, and Iowa butcher shops.

Speciality Meats Available in Iowa

Iowa Beef

Iowa is especially well know for high-quality beef. Iowa beef farms are smaller than many across the country and Iowa beef producers are known for their high-quality genetics and well-marbled steaks. Although most of the beef on ChopLocal is not graded because it is processed at small rural lockers without a USDA grader on site, corn-finished Iowa beef oftens grades upper Choice or Prime, and that's what you can expect from the farms on ChopLocal.

Iowa Pork

As the number 1 state in pork production, ChopLocal is also home to pig farmers that can ship you meat that was raised on their farm and then harvested at a small, local processor. Most of the pork sold through ChopLocal is raised in an outdoor setting, with shelters (often 3 sided buildings) available to keep the animals out of the winter winds and seasonal rain. Iowa pork available on ChopLocal includes heritage breeds like Duroc and Mangalitsa, for an extraordinary eating experience. Iowa pork products include many flavored bacons and other delicious pork products like pork chops.

Iowa Chicken

Iowa chicken can be hard to find but it's not because of a shortage of Iowa farms raising chicken! The difficulty comes from a shortage of poultry processors in the state. In Iowa, chickens can be harvested on the farm, but then there are restrictions on how and where those chickens are sold. However, some of our Iowa farms have literally gone the extra mile to find poultry processors and offer you whole chickens and cuts of chicken for sale.

Des Moines's Nod to Iowa Farms

Des Moines, as the capital city of Iowa, maintains its ties to the state's agricultural heritage through various landmarks and attractions. Here are five things in Des Moines that pay homage to Iowa's agricultural roots:

  1. World Food Prize Hall of Laureates: Located in Des Moines, this museum honors individuals who have made significant contributions to improving the world's food supply. It showcases exhibits related to agriculture, innovations in farming, and efforts to combat hunger globally.

  2. Iowa State Capitol: The Iowa State Capitol building in Des Moines features intricate designs and decorations that incorporate elements related to agriculture. From carvings of corn and wheat to murals depicting Iowa's farming history, the Capitol serves as a symbolic representation of the state's agricultural heritage.

  3. Des Moines Farmers' Market: This vibrant market, held in downtown Des Moines, celebrates local produce, artisans, and food vendors. It's a bustling gathering place where visitors can experience the bounty of Iowa's agriculture, purchase fresh fruits and vegetables, homemade goods, and interact with local farmers.

  4. Living History Farms: Although not directly in Des Moines (located in nearby Urbandale), Living History Farms is a living museum that offers a hands-on experience of Iowa's agricultural past. Visitors can explore different time periods and farming techniques, interacting with costumed interpreters and experiencing the daily life of early Iowans.

  5. John and Mary Pappajohn Sculpture Park: While not explicitly agricultural, this sculpture park in Des Moines exhibits artwork that often reflects Iowa's connection to the land. Some sculptures subtly nod to the state's farming heritage, indirectly celebrating the importance of agriculture in Iowa's history and culture.

These sites and attractions in Des Moines showcase various aspects of Iowa's agricultural legacy, offering visitors opportunities to learn, appreciate, and celebrate the state's farming heritage.