Wild Kalahari is a mindful meat company that only works with ethical farmers. We cut, dry-age and cure beef, mutton and venison from pasture-reared, free-range sources, supplying some of the top restaurants and delis in South Africa.
Our meat is naturally wholesome – packed with healthy proteins rather than mass-produced unethical supplements, chemical stimulants and systemic antibiotics. It is true to its origin in the Kalahari, where free-roaming animals have access to an assortment of nutrients, rotationally grazing on diverse natural pastures while living to an older age. The result: a more flavoursome meat, filled with nature’s nutrients.
Jacques van der Merwe, founder of our personalised artisanal butchery in Swellendam, grew up on a farm in the Kalahari, eventually running the third-generation family farm himself. By being a hands-on farmer, Jacques quickly came to understand the importance of developing planet-friendly practices, and dedicated his work to producing healthier, more nourishing meat for conscious consumption. Jacques became a holistic farmer, rearing animals and caring for the land with a deep respect for the environment, ensuring the sustainability of food production and the regeneration of agricultural resources.
As a butcher with this back-to-basics mindset, Jacques follows the centuries-old method of dry-ageing meat. This ancient practice, passed down from his grandfather, ensures that every piece of meat from Wild Kalahari is divinely tender and loaded with flavour.
In the true head-to-tail custom, Wild Kalahari uses the entire carcass, not only the prime cuts, thus limiting food waste while delivering high-quality meat to our discerning clients, including award-winning restaurants such as The Foodbarn in Noordhoek and Salsify at the Round House in Camps Bay.
FROM FARM to TABLE
Wild Kalahari is one of only a handful of artisanal butcheries in South Africa that produces dry-aged, free-range, grass-fed meat.
THE BENEFITS OF
Wild Kalahari is one of only a handful of artisan butcheries in South Africa who are dry-ageing free-range, pasture reared meat.
The natural taste of ethically produced, pasture-reared meat is much more flavoursome than the meat from mass-production, high energy feeding systems, due to free-roaming animals feeding on a big variety of pastures as well as being allowed to coming to age.
Dry-ageing is a time-honoured technique that enhances both the flavour and tenderness of meat. This ancient practice of hanging meat in a temperature-controlled environment for a few weeks allows air to circulate around the cut. This extracts moisture from the muscles while enzymes break down the vessel and tenderise the meat. Over time, some beneficial fungal bacteria forms on the outer layer of the cut, further enhancing the flavour of the meat to a complex woody, nutty and smokey profile.
34.0257° S, 20.4381° E
WE SOURCE FROM CONSCIOUS FARMERS
The meat we source comes from regenerative farmers who take a holistic approach to agriculture, where rotational grazing mimics migration, allowing nature to nurture its creatures, while ensuring the sustainable use of the land.
Having been holistic farmers in the Kalahari ourselves, we have a personal relationship with every one of these farmers and know exactly where each animal comes from, making our meat 100% traceable to its original source. Farmers are frequently visited and contacted to allow us hands-on involvement in the rearing and finishing of animals to best suit our customers' preference, but also to understand and portray the challenges and conditions our farmers face on a daily basis; in the process also ensures better relations and understanding of both our farmers and customers.
We procure premium meat that is consciously reared. This is the only way that the meat industry can be relevant in a mindful world where we are all called to care for animals and the environment.