Know where you food is coming from!
Do you know where the food on your table has come from? Or the conditions that it was raised in?
Yesterday, I read an article and watched a very disturbing video describing the largest beef recall in history. The video shows clips of very weak and ill cattle, being prodded, lifted up on forklifts, etc. in order to move them and still slaughter and use them for food! Food that is being sold to stores and restaurants, people!
One particularly disturbing part of the whole story for me was that so much of it had already been consumed and/or distributed and used in who-knows-what- burritos, sausages, etc. not to mention that a great quantity was sold to school districts for use in school meal programs!
I’m glad to see this is being dealt with and the plant has currently been closed. But it’s not enough! When will we demand a change in the way that food is being grown and raised, before we unwittingly (and often unthinkingly) buy it at the store?
Let me tell you one of the benefits of buying locally.
We get our milk from a cow that lives about a 45 minute drive from our house. Her name is Belle. She is an Ayurshire cow. We’ve also received dairy from a cow named Freska, who recently had a calf named Faith, who sadly didn’t make it.
May I just say that I love that I know these details about where our milk is coming from?
All of our meat comes from a small, local meat shop, on the owner’s property out in the country, about a 25 minute drive away. They bring in Free Range poultry products from the town next to us. I may not know the cow’s and chicken’s names (and I might not want to, considering I eat them!), but I know the family run business that they are coming from and that it is all local and high-quality and well-raised.
Just for the record, I am not a huge advocate of animal rights. You won’t hear me ranting about the humane treatment of the cows. However, the food producing practices that we support say something about our stewardship, in my opinion. The mandate in Genesis was to have dominion, not to mercilessly destroy and treat the earth and it’s creatures as being worthless and disposable.
I intend to take my children on a field trip to meet Belle and her wonderful caretakers one day. To go and buy more cheese from the small, local cow/goat dairy we visited at Christmas time. To find another family to buy farm-fresh eggs from (sadly ours had to stop- how I miss those eggs!). To spend time nurturing our garden this spring and summer, getting our hands dirty and reveling in the beauty of God’s creation and the miracle of how things grow, while eating cherry tomatoes and sugar snap peas right off the vine.
Because where our food comes from really does make a difference. And now my rant is through. Thanks for listening.
Hat tip to Lindsay for the article link.
Once again you have written something that I couldn’t agree more with! The highlight of my week is when my daughter and I drive 20 minutes out into the country to get milk and eggs from a family farm. My daughter loves to see the calves, I love that I know we’re eating healthy food. It’s a great feeling knowing I’m supporting local farmers. The more we support them, the less likely they will have to give into the pressures of big companies, and the more likely we’ll have access to real, natural animal products in the future!
I found you via a comment on The Motherload.
I enjoyed reading this post–it’s wonderful that you have such a great source of local meat. We live in a highly agricultural area, but I haven’t tried to find a source for chicken. (I don’t eat red meat.) I think I’ll look into that–thanks.
You might enjoy reading Animal Vegetable Miracle. I recently wrote a review and post here: http://watibg.blogspot.com/2008/02/food-for-thought.html
We also try to buy local meat and eggs and milk. That story is so yucky!!!
I read this article recently as well and was utterly disgusted by the treatment of the animals and the charges brought against the men involved. *sigh* I’m no big animal rights activist either, but there’s a certain line one does NOT need to cross, no matter what the animals are destined to “become”.
We’re currently stuck – er, stationed – in California for military purposes and we’re looking forward to getting back to an area where we can source items more easily. Where we live now there seems to be a strange dichotomy: people want organic products, but still because they are “trendy”, not because they are good for us or our children. They want organics for children, but they don’t want any family focuses. Maybe it’s just a pocket of people in this area, but I’ve found things shockingly lacking on these issues.
Love your blog – I found you via OrgJunkie. I’ll be back!