Brentons expand processing, retail sales
A Fremont County staple, Wyoming Custom Meats, is under new management with big goals for providing quality meat from Wyoming livestock producers and expanding retail meat sales. Billy Brenton, a Glenrock resident, purchased Wyoming Custom Meats in October 2020.
The facility now operates as Frank’s Butcher Shop, named after Billy’s father Everett “Frank” Benton, who according to the family, loved a good steak and everything the state of Wyoming had to offer.
Billy purchased the business after learning quality Wyoming beef was not readily available at affordable prices. He and his family have set out to meet this consumer need and help Wyoming producers share their product.
Bryce Brenton, Billy’s son, serves the family business as vice president of livestock operations. While helping manage the family ranch near Glenrock, he works directly with feedlots and livestock growers to secure animals for processing and supply the retail portion of Frank’s Butcher Shop.
USDA inspected facility
The slaughter facility located in Hudson continues to operate and is managed by Jared Hamilton. Since purchasing the facility, the Brenton’s have worked to become a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) certified facility.
“We just became USDA certified in the last couple weeks, and with this, we have been able to pick up two more kill days each week,” Bryce explains. “Previously, the plant was only killing two days a week. We have the capacity for five slaughter days but we currently utilize four days, which has doubled our slaughter capacity.”
Bryce shares especially with the pandemic, there has been more focus on locally-sourced foods and helping small businesses. Frank’s Butcher Shop purchases Wyoming-grown livestock, and remains focused on working with local producers.
“Since we have become fully integrated, we have the ability to offer fair, competitive prices for cattle,” he notes. “We can offer ranchers fair prices for their cattle and remain within our margins. We are excited about buying quality and serving producers.”
Bryce continues, “We’ve always been about Wyoming and serving the people. We’re taking care of the people taking care of us.”
In addition to the slaughter facility in Hudson, the Brentons are looking at the possibility of building and implementing a slaughter house in Wheatland to help meet the needs of cattle producers in the area.
Expanding retail meat sales
While the plant in Hudson has a small meat counter designated for retail meat sales, the Brentons have the opportunity to expand retail sales across the state. The family has purchased the building adjacent to the processing plant in Fremont County to expand retail sales and eventually operate as a grocery.
In addition, the Brentons are in the process of building a retail meat sales venue in Casper, modeled after a milking barn on their Converse County ranch. The shop, fed by the processing facility in Hudson, is set to open in early April.
Frank’s Butcher Shop also offers retail meat packages, which can be found on their website at franksbutchershop.com.
Averi Hales is the editor of the Wyoming Livestock Roundup. Send comments on this article to firstname.lastname@example.org.