Domestic geese are descendants of wild geese species and are known for their large size, long necks, and often loud vocalizations. These birds are adaptable to various climates, making them suitable for life in Alberta. On farms, they are often valued for their natural foraging ability, helping in weed control, and their instinct to sound alarms, making them excellent 'watchdogs'. Geese are also known for their down, used in high-quality bedding and insulation products.
Geese have been domesticated for thousands of years, with records dating back to Ancient Egypt. They have been raised for their meat, eggs, and down throughout history. In Alberta, the tradition of raising geese on farms blends both practical and culinary purposes. They have been integrated into the province's agricultural practices, contributing to local food production and small-scale farming operations.
Goose meat is prized for its rich, dark, and flavourful profile, a bit stronger and fattier than turkey or chicken. In Alberta's culinary scene, roasted goose is a classic dish, often associated with festive or special occasions. The meat pairs well with a variety of seasonings and accompaniments, from savoury herbs to sweet and tart fruit-based sauces. Goose fat, rendered from the bird, is a culinary delight in itself, treasured for roasting potatoes or vegetables. The eggs of geese, larger than chicken eggs, are also used in cooking, known for their rich yolks and dense whites, perfect for baking or as a hearty breakfast.