Heritage Foods USA has dubbed this month Goatober for the second year running and No Goat Left Behind is the month's lifeline. The project was started by Anne Saxelby, founder of Saxelby Cheesemongers, as a way to provide an alternative to the often ill-fated destiny male goats are met with on dairy farms. In order for there to be milk, animals must have babies, after which only the females with produce the milk needed to make cheese. Heritage Foods' website describes these babies as "a bi-product of a farm that is looking to produce milk. The labor and feeding costs of caring for these babies is significant. Since the farm needs the mother’s milk to produce cheese, the babies are fed on expensive milk replacer, a goat version of baby formula. Without a dependable end market for these animals farmers simply cannot take on the financial burden and must face hard choices like selling the animals into the commodity market at a few days old or even killing them at birth."
Goatober aims to raise goat consumption in the US, a country that contributes little to the fact that goat is the most widely consumed meat in the world. The goal with No Goat Left Behind this year is to sell 1,000 animals. Over a dozen family farms and 100 restaurants are participating. Among them are Minetta Tavern, Momofuku Noodle Bar and Ssam, Balthazar, Fette Sau, Maialino, Gramercy Tavern, Roberta's, and all of Mario Batali's restaurants.
As part of Goatober, goat will be available for purchase at Heritage Meat Shop in the Essex Market and online at Heritage Foods USA. Chef Sam Richman of Gran Electrica will be hosting Birria: A Cooking Demonstration and Tasting tomorrow, October 5th, at the Astor Center from 630pm - 830pm. Birria is a goat-based Mexican stew. Tickets are $40 and available for purchase here.