Saturday, October 4, 2008

How long can I keep venison in the refrigerator or freezer ?


At Cordray's we make every effort to process your venison so that it will last as long as possible. This includes being "fanatical" about cleanliness. Clean, bacteria free meat will have a much longer shelf life than meat that is poorly handled. You control much of this factor by your safe handling of the deer in the field or during transport. Once we get the meat, we keep it at the proper temperatures, process it as you have instructed, and then package it for you. Fresh cuts are vacuum-sealed and frozen. As long as the seal remains intact, these may be kept a year or more in the freezer. Ground meat is packaged into airtight plastic tubes and tied. These also keep a year or more at freezer temperatures. When unthawed, fresh meat should be used immediately. Spoiled meat has an obvious odor and feels "sticky" or "slimy" to the touch.

Cooked products - anything smoked and ready to eat - are also vacuum sealed in plastic bags. These may be kept in the sealed bags for up to three weeks as long as the vacuum seal remains unbroken (there is no air in the bag). Once you open the bag to use part of the package, leave it open in the refrigerator so the product can "breathe". Smoked meats tend to mold if tightly wrapped in the refrigerator. For best flavor retention, store cooked venison in the freezer and take out only what you will use immediately. Even jerky, which has a refrigerator storage life of months, has better flavor if kept in the freezer until you are ready to use it. Our forefathers kept dried venison jerky for months, but you can bet it tasted like shoe leather!

Hunter Mueller came in with Guy Kessler for his first!


Hunter Mueller brought in a 10 point buck as his very first deer!

Friday, October 3, 2008

An 11 point!


Boze Brewer got this big buck Sunday evening. It had 11 points!


If you've never had a deer processed by Cordray's, you don't know what you're missing.

All fresh cuts are trimmed, vacuum sealed, labeled and frozen. We keep your meat separate and you get back your own meat in fresh cuts. Smoked products are the only batched items. We package your meat family style. Each pack will contain a one meal serving for a family of 4 - usually 4 to 6 pieces. Roasts are cut in half unless you request otherwise .If you have other specialty cut needs please ask, since we will gladly customize your order.

Roasts: There are no extra charges for roasts of any kind.

Shoulder Roasts-Front shoulder roasts are cut bone-in.

Neck Roasts - An old time favorite, these small roasts work well in a crock pot.

Ham Roasts - The large meaty back legs can be bone in or boneless and left whole or cut in half.

Loin Roasts- (Sometimes called backstraps) These long muscle strips along the back of the deer are cut in half and packaged separately.

Tenderloins- The small "breakfast loins" are inside the body cavity along the backbone.

Steaks: Sliced steaks are included at no extra charge.

Loin Steaks - Sliced loin steaks come from the tender back muscle. Sometimes called "grilling steaks", we recommend having them butterfly cut to give you a bigger steak. You can also have them cut through to get medallion size steaks. Unless you request otherwise, our steaks are cut about 3/4 inches thick and come packaged with 6 per pack.

Ham Steaks - Sliced ham steaks come from the leg muscle. When you slice the whole ham, you will get a nice variety of different size steaks, all about 3/4 of an inch thick and packaged 2 to per pack.

Antlerless Days

SC Lowcountry Antlerless Deer Harvesting Information for 2008*

Antlerless deer have less than 2 inches of visible antlers. In SC there are three methods of antlerless deer harvesting. We, at Cordray's, strictly adhere to the DNR rules regarding antlerless deer harvesting and will check for all required tags and licenses.

  1. The Antlerless Deer Quota Program sets the number of does (or antlerless deer) to be taken from a certain property. Application is made to the SC DNR and adhesive tags are issued for the land owner.
  2. The South Carolina Wildlife and Marine Resources Department has set the following days as Either Sex Days for private land in the listed zone. See the SC DNR web site for confirmation or for other counties. Limit two antlerless deer per hunter per day. These are for gun hunts on private land.

Game Zone Map This map shows the new 6 zone structure and lists all the antlerless dates for the state.

Zone 6 Lowcountry

  • October: 4, 11, 18, 25

  • November: 1, 8, 15, 22, 29

  • December: 20, 27

  • January: 1

See the DNR Rules and Regulations book for other zones.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Why can't I pick up or drop off a deer early in the day on Sundays ?

Cordray's Venison Processing has grown from a small backyard part-time business to a growing operation that hires over 20 employees and is open for 82 hours per week. For our sanity, spiritual life, and health, we must have some time off each week. Even though you are a friend, opening the shop for that "just a few minutes" it takes to check you in or out disrupts our one morning of rest. We open at 6 p.m. on Sundays. Please follow our operating hours, and understand when we are unable to help you on Sundays before 6 p.m.

We've been opening on Sunday mornings just for alligators from 8 to 10 am. Then we close and open back up in the evening at 6.

Bill McKinnon won a tree stand


Cordray's Big Buck contest awards a tree stand every two weeks for the deer with the largest dressed weight. The first 2 weeks ended on August 30th and Gedney Howe IV's 125.4 lb. buck won. The second 2 weeks ended on September 13th and Jeff Stone's 112.5 lb buck won. Somehow we never got a picture of that one. We haven't heard from Jeff about picking up the stand, so if you know him, give him a call!
Bill McKinnon, your buck with the weight of 158.2 makes you the winner of the weeks ending Sept.27. Come by and pick up your stand. We'll all just have to wait to see if somone takes your place next week!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Kayce Marvin's first deer

Kayce Marvin and her dad, Randy Marvin, were a happy pair the other night when Kayce brought in her first deer! Now there's more competition for Weston! To see more first timers, click on the title link above.


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Monday, September 29, 2008



Rebecca Meek joined our First Deer Hall of Fame! She took her dunking like a woman and got her free shirt. Congratulations, Rebecca!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Kenny Overholt's big gator


Kenny Overholt, Anthony Overholt, Sean Wagler, and Ryan Herschberger brought in a 10 foot 1 inch alligator Sunday night. They got him in Berkeley county and he gave them quite a fight! It weighed 285 lbs. I saw one of you had a video camera. If you post it anywhere, please send us a link.

A big 10 footer!


Glen Adcock, Bryan Bolt, Wiley Murph, and Batson Hewitt came back with the 272# 10 ft. 2 in. gator!
These 4 guys have been here with an earlier gator. Check out the post below for a film clip showing how they got the last one. I hope they'll send us another film of this hunt, too.
Two more weekends to go. Please give us a call if you're bringing one in. These guys take quite a bit of time to process right!

Real-time Earth and Moon phase