Meat and fish - meal staples in many Canadian households. In 2020, with the stay-home orders in effect, e-commerce spiked and the online meat and fish industry has seen a big spurt in sales, but where to put your money? It might be a new territory for many and the options are overwhelming. We decided to dive into the online meat and fish ordering options in London and compare the most prevalent companies who offer their services to the city and surrounding areas. Our criteria for making the list: Delivery has to be available in London, Ontario. Focus has to be on local meat, high quality products from free range animals. Must have a website.
There seems to be a lack of transparency in the market and a lot of price misleading and camouflaging, but that didn’t stop us. When deciding on who to buy from, we recommend to always do your own research. For us, the most important criteria were: a) Minimum entry order. b) Price Transparency. c) Product claims, sourcing, and certifications. d) Order process. e) Customer service and reviews.
In our research we limited the comparison to: Ground Beef, Wild Caught Sockeye Salmon, Bacon, Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast and Striploin Steaks. So that we compare apples to apples, we sought out the cost for 40lb of each of these meats or fish to keep it simple. This represents a 200lb bulk order average based on quantities a typical Canadian family will consume over a 1 year period.
London Meat & Fish Delivery Reviews
#1: Farm Club Meat & Fish Delivery
Overall FarmClub is the best meat and fish delivery company reviewed for London, Ontario, and surrounding area. Best prices, clear and transparent website and sourcing information is available on their website. FarmClub delivers across Ontario and Quebec. Our test order came to a total of $2,264.30; the best offer available.
Seen above is a screen shot from the Farm Club website. Inventory and ordering is simple, with transparent weight per package and price.
Pros: Prices are listed clearly per lb. Easy to navigate website. “ClubPack” options available (bigger packages) can reduce your costs even more.
Cons: No phone number listed on website. Only e-mail.
#2: Papa Earth
Papa Earth advertises a meat subscription service but also offers a more cost-effective bulk option. They only offer local meat and wild caught fish. Their bulk services list the prices per lb., their box service does not. Papa Earth offers delivery across Ontario. Our test order totalled $2,332.59 with their bulk pricing at its best rate.
Seen above is a screen shot from the Papa Earth bulk store. They have a fully customizable build your own box format. Very unique. Inventory and ordering is simple, with transparent weight per package and price.
Pros: Easy to navigate website. Farming and certification are listed. Prices are transparent.
Cons: Minimum order to quality for bulk is $1250 (otherwise you’ll pay a delivery fee)
#3: Meat Boutique
MeatBoutique is local to London, Ontario and offers delivery in surrounding areas. They offer both meat and seafood and focus on high quality and high animal welfare standards. Meat Boutique provides a shop and delivery through their mobile frozen meat store delivery truck. MeatBoutique came third in our ranking as well as price, a total of $2,720 for our test order.
Seen above is a screen shot from the Meat Boutique website with an Occasions page last listing a 2018 event.
Pros: Attention to animal welfare standards. You can order online and email them for a price quote. Email was quickly responded to with a quote.
Cons: Prices are listed per box, but not per lb. or kg. Medium high price.
#4: Pack Road Country Meats
Park Road Country Meats, a Lambeth area shop in South-West London, offering delivery for London, Ontario, and surrounding areas. They focus on high quality, naturally raised meat, and wild seafood. Park Road Country Meats have a wide variety of product listed on their website. Our test order totalled $2,750 which we received by email inquiry.
Seen on the Pack Road Meats website, if you want to try out their services before a bulk order and you are not home, they require you to provide a cooler. Other companies in our reviews offer smaller order deliveries with dry ice within their shipments for convenience.
Pros: Focus on high quality, sustainable seafood and sourced from family farms. Delivery fee is only $4 or $6 for orders under $100.
Cons: Higher price bracket.
#5: Butcher Box Canada
ButcherBox.CA is presented as more of a meat subscription box service with bulk options with no affiliation to the original Butcher Box in the USA. We found pre-selected boxes where you can fill the box and select an amount of product up to a limit for your re-occuring order. Different pricing tiers come with packages based on person/family with the lowest bulk price available for the 4-5 Adult Box portion.
Shown above is a visual from the Butcher Box Canada website. Ordering option for 4-5 adults.
Pros: Product selection area is nicely organized with details once you find it.
Cons: The order process forces you to stay within a maximum number of choices. You have to cancel your subscription otherwise it’ll renew automatically. Pricing is not transparent for the products compared to other companies reviewed. Best price package is on a plan for 4-5 adults vs. something more common like a small family or couple.
#6:Home-Tyme Food Services
Home-Tyme Food Services delivers meat and fish to homes and businesses and is located in London Ontario. They’ve been in business for over 20 years and have a team of sales reps going door-to-door with freezer trucks. They also have an online website. Our test order totalled $2,749.08
Seen above is a screen shot from the Home-Tyme Food Services website. They allow you to choose your delivery driver. The image on their home page for a delivery truck appears to be a live animal carrier transport truck from Europe.
Pros: Fish is sourced from Canadian fisheries. Personal service from sales reps available.
Cons: Limited information about farm sources. Prices are listed per box but not listed per lb. or kg. Took us a few phone calls to get a quote on some items.
TruLocal focuses on local meat and wild caught fish. They are a multinational and active in Canada and Illinois, USA. They offer better bulk pricing by email inquiry: 20% off the regular price when ordering 6 regular boxes ($249) or more. Minimum order for bulk pricing comes to $1,195.20. Our test order totalled $3,683.60 with their bulk pricing at its best rate which made it the most expensive meat company on our list.
Seen above is a screen shot from the TruLocal website where you have to give them your email and postal code to see the product pricing.
Pros: Easy to navigate website. All supplier information is listed on site and nutrition labels and some farmers videos.
Cons: Price is extremely high and prices are non-transparent, no prices per lb. or kg are listed.
#8: Direct Fine Foods
Direct Fine Foods has been in business since 1997. Bulk pricing starts at $3,290 (per email inquiry). Our test order totalled $3,290 which made it one of the most expensive options
Seen above is a screen shot from the Direct Fine Foods website. Pricing and ordering requires calling or email.
Pros: They deliver seemingly everywhere in Ontario but we can’t say for sure.
Cons: High minimum order and high total price. Customer service needs to speak to you before you can place an order. Lack of transparency: Prices are not listed anywhere and our price quote did not contain individual prices.
Warning: Direct Fine Foods offers to let customers pay in instalments which means financing. Financing requires a credit check and could have change your credit score negatively. We recommend consulting your bank before making the decision to finance food. Government Credit Score info link.
#9: NutraFarms Inc.
NutraFarms is a bulk meat delivery company and delivers across Ontario. Their minimum orders start at $3,652.75. Nutrafarms is know for their door to door marketing practices. Our test order quote totalled $3,652.75 which made it the second highest price.
Seen above is a screen shot with a Nutrafarms advertising "cheap organic meat online". London Meat Delivery found NutraFarms pricing as very high. Source: Price Comparison Chart - Meat Delivery London
Pros: Nutrafarms sources local and offers information about some of their farms on their website.
Cons: Lack of price transparency. Order process is complicated and similar to a time share type of presentation online. High prices. In a standard order you are required to purchase cleaning materials as part of the deal which cannot be swapped out.
Meat Delivery London asked NutraFarms about their organic label. We were referred to their website, and the site does not showcase any certified organic farmers. Nutrafarms advertises ‘cheap organic meat’. Their meat ordering costs are the second highest of our reviews. Price Comparison.
NutraFarms offers payment installments which could have an impact on your credit score. Government Credit Score info link here.
#10: A Cut Above Meats Inc. Fish & Organics
A Cut Above Meats is a bulk meat order company from London, Ontario. They offer some trial boxes on but emphasize bulk ordering is the best. Bulk pricing starts at $1,976.00 ($38 weekly for 1 adult as per website), and their test order totalled $3,052. Our biggest concern with A Cut Above Meats is that they charge HST on their food at a rate of 14.94%. This is illegal, higher than the harmonized tax rate and in conflict with the Ontario Ministry of Finance set rules on taxing food goods. What's Taxable Government link here.
Seen above is a screen shot from A Cut Above Meats customer service email with communication charging HST in a quote from Tuesday February 16, 2021.
Pros: Suppliers, sources and certification are listed on web site.
Cons: Complicated and not user-friendly order process. Lack of price transparency. You are mandated to fill in a checklist before you will receive a price quote after a lot of back and forth. A Cut Above Meats charges HST on food.
A Cut Above Meats charges and HST rate of 14.94% on their food. This is illegal and in conflict with the Ontario Ministry of Finance set rules on taxing food goods. Government Link: What's Taxable
A meat order app that connects you to local farmers. A ‘Farm to Freezer’ concept. Farmers have signed up across North American and therefore wherever you are you can order true local meat straight from the farm.