Pork, not turkey, selling at Hispanic grocery store

Nov 21, 2016

Fabricio Perez cooks at Valley Meats La Carniceria in Carbondale.

Valley Meats is a butcher shop in Carbondale, off of Highway 133. The clientele is mostly Latino. Spanish is mainly what you hear once inside.


Business is good leading up to Thanksgiving, but the other white meat is what’s in demand -- pork, not turkey.


Juan Hernandez works mainly as a butcher at Valley Meats. This Thanksgiving, he said he and his family will cook the traditional American turkey: Bird cooked in the oven, etc. They want to practice American traditions, he said. To be clear, cooking turkey isn’t all that foreign. In Mexico, they used to have it for Christmas.


Hernandez won’t be buying it at Valley Meats, however. He’ll need to go to an “American store,” he said. Valley Meats doesn’t sell turkey. The majority of people coming into the store are buying pork, which is what they’ll cook for Thanksgiving.


Valley Meats has been in business for about 16 years, mainly serving Carbondale’s Latino population. Raul Gutierrez said business is good right now.


“There’s a little more work during this week. We’re selling a lot of pork tenderloin, a lot of pork leg, which is what a lot of people are buying, meat for barbecuing,” he said.  

Fabricio Perez is also a butcher and a chef. He was born in Chihuahua, Mexico, and now lives in Rifle with his grandkids. He’s lived there for 11 years. He spends his days making burritos, and cutting meat.  

He said there is a Mexican equivalent for Thanksgiving, but he doesn’t remember its name and remembers chicken, not turkey.


On Thursday, at Perez’s kitchen in Rifle, it’ll be a turkey in the oven...and some tamales.