I know I get this from my dad, but I am a real freak when it comes to cleanliness with my deer. I am also adamant that I get my deer cold as fast as possible after field dressing it.
These warm autumns of the past few years have caused me to up my game when getting deer processed. I have devised a system of cooling them down with bags of ice overnight when I can’t get them processed quickly, but I still cringe at the thought of leaving a deer hanging when the outside temperature are higher than 45 degrees.
Over the years, I’ve tried to include citric acid spray in my routine. Some companies have offered it commerically for hunters, but many have come and gone, and there has been no real direct source for it for some time. I used to get it directly from a butcher’s shop in a town near where I grew up. That eventually became a hassle, because the town is more than two hours from where I now live.
Imagine my surprise earlier this fall when I discovered a new supplier of spray for wild game meat. Best of all, this spray is blended specifically for big-game hunters. It includes citric acid, yes, but several other ingredients as well to help preserve venison before it is processed.
By itself, citric acid actually kills bacteria on a cellular level. I don’t know exactly how it works, but it has something to do with the acidity of the spray.When applied to meat, bacteria simply cannot survive, which makes the meat much safer for human consumption.
Citric acid has also been shown to change the way proteins are configured. This helps repel egg-laying insects that can ultimately ruin fresh meat.
The specific spray that I’ve been using (have used it on four deer here in Wisconsin already) is the MeatSAVR® brand that is available at the ShopDeerHunting online store.
It is very affordable ($9.99 a bottle) and lasts all season without refrigeration. I will admit, though, that I keep my bottle in the fridge.
• Reduces microbial production over 99 percent compared to untreated meat.
• Dehydrates flesh surfaces and reduces Water Activity (Aw) in exposed meat.
• Keeps meat biologically safer
• Reduces oxidation and spoilage rates.
• Forms a natural, organic, acidic, and salty crust.
• Reduces surface PH levels of exposed meat & game bags.
• Is non-Toxic, Naturally Forming & Biodegradable.
For more information, check out the MeatSAVR page on our site.