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Deer meat is in the cooler right now sitting on top of bagged ice and with ice on top as well. The drain is pulled so it can drain.

Is there a rule of thumb that you and others go by as to how long it should sit that way till I take it to the processor?

Being my first deer, I have no clue. I have been told a week, 4 days and all things in between. So what say you. I will keep fresh ice in it as needed.
 

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A week is good enough but remember it may sit at the processor for 2-3-4 days aging before he gets to it so I would only keep it like you have it for 3-4 days at the most!

Your don't have to age it at all unless it's a older deer that needs tenderizing some ! i take my younger deer in the next day or two if it's cool enough to let it hang !
 

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twiceRetired Serve No One
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I only age a back strap long enough to get the Canola Oil Hot.

The rest Itry to keep in about a week , however this one will be headed to the Butcher Shoppe after only 3 days to become Sausage

It is De-Boned , cut up and flushed out very well .
 

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I have always kept mineCOMPLETELY packedon ice and kept well drained for a week to 10 days (just depends on when I can make it to the processor) - I personally think ALWAYS at least a week though...:usaflag
 

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Keep the plug in and make sure it is covered completly in ice. Drain the water off each day and add ice as needed. I try to ice it for 3-4 days then take it to Lee's. I like to leave the plug in cause the water seems to pull put the blood a little better just be sure to drain it off each day and you have plenty of ice on it.
 

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depends on how 'gamey' you want/dont want the meat and how tender you want it. im new to huntin so someone jump in and correct me. me personally, i like to cut the muscle groups out and separate the sinew from the meat in the bigger pieces. takes a little more time but i believe it allows the meat to bleed easier. the way you stated how you let the meat sit in the cooler didnt seem right. as far as procedure i put the meat in, thenaddfiltered water ( i never use tap water for anything related to food prep, have a whole house water filter. chlorine = :sick) just enough to cover the meat, then pack tons of ice on it. you dont want the meat out of the water, but it must be icedand yes, you must drain off the water every day. as far as time i have always been told to do 7-10 days. since i have an icemaker, that is very easy and cheap. i asked the guys at csm how long do they recommend and one of the processors said he ice-ages his for 3 weeks. with a little more time left, hopefully i can bag a nice one and try that out.
 

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depends to on the processor. The processors I've seen, you may or may not get your meat back. you may just get your weight in meat back. In that case, it doesn't matter what you do with it if the other guys aren't doing anything.
 

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I believe longer is better if you get your meat back. I've kept mine iced for a month and no problems. It did seem better as far as how much blood was in the burger meat after getting it back from the processor. I look at it this way you pay moreto letbeef age at the butcher if you have your own side of beef processed.
 

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I have always kept mine for 1 week. Keep a close eye on it, draining water off daily and replinshing the ice.
 

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The official answer is UP TO 14 days at 40 degrees. Everybody has their own theory, but this is what you're looking for. Iced down in a cooler, sittin in an old fridge or hangin' in a walkin cooler. 14 days at 40 degrees. You may wanna take in consideration as stated above about the time sitting at the processor.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks everyone. Looks like it might not matter. I might have to take it in today. They may induce my wife tonight and who knows when I will get the chance to take it in after the baby is born.
 

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hey jon if you want me to manage it just let me know. i have an icemaker so that is no problem and is free. i live near the garcon bridge on the breeze side. let me know and i'll pick it up or if u can i'll meet you at the bridge.
 
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