Family lives off the land and wild game - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Family lives off the land

What's in your refrigerator? For the Staggs family, it's always wild game.     

They've made it their mission to live off the land not only to save money, but for the health benefits, too.     

"It's pretty much all we live off of from a red meat perspective," said Greg Staggs.    

Greg grew up eating wild game.

"We did a lot of frogging in the ditches, and we did a lot of rabbit hunting," he said.    

As he got older, he saw it as a way to save some money.  

"I was looking for a way to subsidize my grocery bill as I was working my way through college," said Staggs.    

So, he took up bow hunting.

Greg's wife Alison had to get used to the idea of wild game.  

"I was not raised in a home where hunting was a thing at all," said Alison Staggs.    

She has since embraced her husband's passion.  

"I saw how hard he worked for us and knew hunting was a great stress-reliever from him," said Alison.

Their kids, 5-year-old Gabe and 9-year-old Matthew, are already hooked on hunting and have their own bows.  

"I've shot my own turkey," said Matthew.    

You'll find wild turkey in the family's freezer, but you will mostly find venison.

"What we eat three or four times a week is venison or elk or antelope that he has provided for us," said Alison.

As for the health benefits, according to the Mayo Clinic, wild game has about one-third less fat than lean cuts of pork or beef. There are concerns, too, like Chronic Wasting Disease.    

However, that is something the Staggs family does not worry about.  

"I'll take the risk of something entering into nature over the processing and chemicals we put in our foods any day," said Greg Staggs.

It has been 15 years since their family has gone to the store to buy beef.     

The boys say they don't feel like they're missing out.

"It's very good," said Matthew Staggs.    

From the looks of their basement 'man cave,' which is filled with mounts and hunting equipment, the tradition is likely to continue.  

"Now it's just a habit, since that's all we eat," said Alison Staggs.    

To them it's cheaper, and better.

"To eat healthy and incorporate that into our lives is huge," said Greg Staggs.

The family does incorporate chicken and fish into their diets as well.

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