FAQs

b

What is so different about Roam Sticks’ pork?

We focus on the most important ingredient, the meat. We guarantee that our pork is pasture raised, non-GMO, antibiotic free, free of growth stimulants (like ractopamine), and from small family farms in the United States. By focusing on non-GMO, pasture raised animal production, we create better-tasting pork while utilizing sustainable farming practices. This type of farming is better for the pigs, the environment, and makes a healthier snack for you and your family.
b

What is the difference between “natural pork” and “pasture-raised pork”?

The USDA defines natural as: A product containing no artificial ingredient or added color and is only minimally processed. That means “natural pork” can still be fed conventional GMO grain, kept inside in a confinement facility, and be given antibiotics and growth stimulants. You really have to ask specifically how the pig was raised and what it ate if you want to know the details. Our pigs are raised outdoors on grass. Pasture-based pigs can wallow, frolic, and express their “pigginess.” We choose to use non-GMO supplemental feed rather than conventional GMO feed. (All pigs get some supplemental feed, it is not possible to raise a pig only on a grass.) The supplemental non-GMO feed our farmers provide is more expensive than conventional, GMO grain, but we think it is worth it. Whenever possible, our pigs are also provided with forage and produce, like pumpkins and apples.
b

What breed of pigs do you use for your sticks?

Our pigs are all heritage varieties, predominantly Berkshire, Red Wattle, and Herefords. These are all breeds that have not had the flavor breed out of them like the modern pigs in most Big Pig operations. We also select for pigs for their ability to graze forages and get part of their diet from pasture.
b

Why is it important to buy meat that is free of antibiotics?

Conventional pork is grown by by concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) that can produce a lot of food at a low cost. (CAFOs are also often referred to as ”factory farms.”) The animals spend their entire lives indoors, crowded together. Antibiotics are given daily, not only to kill bacteria, but also because they promote faster growth in the pigs. The routine use of antibiotics in pigs is contributing to creating antibiotic-resistant bacteria that affects both pigs and humans. This can create “superbugs” that transfer from hogs to people. For example, MRSA infections, a problem in hospitals, have been traced back to pig factory to CAFOs. Seventy percent of antibiotic use in this country is for agriculture, not for humans. While doctors and scientists have been concerned about antibiotic resistance for years, the evidence is increasing—we must do something now, before the “superbugs” render most antibiotics useless. The United Nations General Assembly met in September 2016 for a high-level meeting specifically on the topic of antimicrobial resistance, “to commit to fighting antimicrobial resistance together.” Dr. Margaret Chan of the World Health Organization said, “The emergence of bacterial resistance is outpacing the world’s capacity for antibiotic discovery. You can choose to protect one of the most important tools in medicine—choose antibiotic-free meat.
b

What is ractopamine and why don’t you feed it to pigs?

The growth stimulant, ractopamine, is administered in most conventional factory farms to make pigs put on lean muscle mass more quickly. Ractopamine belongs to a class of drugs, beta-agonists, that has been adapted for animal use when it was shown to boost growth rates. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved ractopamine for use on pigs after just one human health study—an evaluation of six young, healthy men, one of whom dropped out because his heart began racing and pounding abnormally. Three years later, the FDA sent ractopamine sponsor a 14-page letter, accusing the company of withholding information about the drug’s “adverse animal drug experiences” and “safety and effectiveness.” Shortly thereafter, the FDA required drug manufacturers to add this warning label: “Ractopamine may increase the number of injured and/or fatigued pigs during marketing. Not for use in breeding swine.” Ractopamine has been banned in 160 countries, including China and Russia because of concern about its effects’ on human health. So, even though it is a standard practice to feed it to conventional pigs, we at Roam Sticks just don’t think it’s a good idea. All Roams Sticks’ pork is 100% ractopamine free.
b

How long will my Roam Sticks last?

Refer to the “BEST BY” date on your stick. The shelf life is 6 to 9 months from manufacture. A “Slim Jim” like product will have a shelf life of a year or more, but they use a lot of preservatives and chemicals to achieve that. We decided to go with the traditional preservation methods of natural fermentation and real, wood smoke. The shelf life is shorter this way, but we believe it is better for your health.
b

How should I store my Roam Sticks?

It’s best to store your product in a cool, dry place such as a shelf or pantry. Do not keep your sticks sitting out unrefrigerated after opening. Our bars are not designed for storage once you open the package and expose them to the air.
b

How much fat, protein, and carb do the sticks have?

Here is the breakdown: Hickory Smoked Pork with Uncured Bacon: 80 calories, 7 g fat, 5 g protein, 1 g carb, and 210 mg sodium. Hickory Smoked Pork with Pineapple: 80 calories, 6 g fat, 5 g protein, 1 g carb, and 220 mg sodium.
b

How do you make Roam Sticks shelf-stable?

Roam Sticks use the traditional, artisanal process of natural fermentation and smoking to make our sticks shelf-stable. Other companies use encapsulated citric acid (which contains a hydrogenated oil) and chemical smoke to preserve their sticks. This means with Roam Sticks you get the health benefits of a probiotic food, rather than the health damaging effects of hydrogenated oils.
b

What is the casing made out of and how is it different than other snack sticks?

The casing for Roam Sticks is made out of beef collagen. Roam Sticks exclusively uses dye-free collagen casings. This is important because red dye is considered an industry standard for snack stick collagen casings. That means other sticks can have red dye in the casing, and it will NOT be listed on the ingredients. If a snack stick or sausage looks unnaturally red, it probably has red dye, even if you don’t see it written anywhere on the label.
b

What is lactic acid starter culture? Does it contain dairy?

The sugars used to create this lactic acid can be derived from beets or dextrose. The lactic acid starter culture is not derived from wheat or dairy and do not contain any milk or milk protein. Therefore, the products are still considered to be gluten and casein free.
b

Are your sticks Gluten Free?

Yes, all of the ingredients are free of gluten. However, they are not processed in a certified gluten free facility, so it is possible for other products made at the facility to contain gluten.
b

Do you have a Roam Stick that is free of all sweeteners?

The process of fermentation requires there be some type of sweetener present for the beneficial bacteria to eat. We provide organic cassava root (as dextrose) for the probiotic bacteria used in Roam Sticks to eat. Most of the sugar is eaten by the bacteria during the fermentation process, which is why Roam Sticks have only one gram of carb.
b

Can you make the package easier to open?

We are working on it. When we chose to go to an artisan smokehouse we prioritized the taste and health benefits of fermentation and smoking with real hickory wood over the packaging. We are a young, family-owned business and don’t have the capitol (yet!) to buy new machinery. In the meantime, if you practice you can open them by hand. Everyone else, keep scissors handy or something sharp to puncture the plastic and get to the goodies inside.
b

Can I get a sample for free?

We would love to give away free things, but as a young, family-owned business, we are working hard to grow and aren’t quite at the give-away stage. Keep supporting Roam Sticks and help us get to that point!
b

Where can I buy Roam Sticks?

Roam Sticks are sold online at Thrive Market, Barefoot Provisions, OneStopPaleoShop and Amazon online and in over 250 stores throughout the USA. Please check out our store locater to find distributors near you, or simply order our healthy snacks online here.
b

What are your shipping rates?

Shipping is included for all online orders.