So, everyone has their own particular strengths: for some, it is math (not me). For others it is swimming (again, not me). I have skills in farming, and other things. My husband has learned skills in farming, and other things — and together we can farm, greatly. As an entire family, my mom, her partner, and my husband and I have some pretty super-powered farming skills — we could be (Marvel comic’s) Fantastic (Farming) Four, or something like that. Imagine farmers in spandex, with super-dee-dooper powers to control fire, fly, bend light, and more!
In reality, we are more only like Mr Fantastic — as farmer’s we have to also be able to bend and twist our bodies into contorted and un-natural places to do things that regular humans do not have to do. Squeeze ourselves through gates and check on pastured animals, ocassionally crawling into tight spaces in the barn to rescue animals who get under and behind feed containers, etc.
And then there are days that we are more like The Thing: full of super-strength, and as solid and a rock. Farming kind of requires that steady confidence to forge ahead, even when the weather is crappy, even when you have a cold, and need to be in bed, resting. The care, attention, and love that we dispense to our animals, daily, simply cannot be overstated.
We can do a bang-up job of humanely raising pigs on pasture, and creating the best possible life for them, and then selectively cultivating the best heritage breed pork that you have had. We stand behind that. Whether it is a simple, yet flavorful chop, or a Maple Syrup Cured Hickory smoked product, or a Garlic Parmesan Sausage, or a Fresh Polish Kielbasa, we know that you will like our products and will be back for more.
We are taking a break this year from raising the heritage breed turkeys for the holidays, as grain prices were absolutely prohibitive this year, and though the birds free-roam, they do need a complete, balanced ration to round-out their nutrition needs and grow properly. Next year, we will be back in the turkey business, and we appreciate your understanding for our year off.
Last year at about this time we bought a heritage breed milking cow, that we decided to sell a few months later, as a bred dry cow. We accepted partial payment for the cow by a good personal check, and agreed that the remaining couple hundred bucks would be paid in literal “bucks” (buckling goats) in the summer of 2011 – the agreed value to which was a couple hundred dollars — a bit high, but organic. Our cow departed. We never got the bucklings. We got threatening emails that contained false information, outright lies, and bitterness. Apparently, after the beautiful calf was born, the buyer didn’t like the cow, and sold her, for a greater amount than we sold her for, and kept the calf to boot!
We stand behind our animals, our compassionately raised chemical free pastured heritage breed meats and most of all, our word. My grandparents began our farming endeavor in 1941 and struggled through hard times, and saw a few good times as well. As a kid, I worked everyday to keep our animals well cared for and healthy. I have learned the hard way that there are people around here who are just plain huckster-farmers. They front a great face, and talk a thoughtful talk, but when it comes down to it, they are just evil souls at heart. If you can’t look your farmer in the eye and get a really straight answer, complete with details and backed up with evidence, than don’t trust them. I wish that things were different, but they aren’t.
Doing good all the time takes it out of you. Just ask the Fantastic Four. Or your trusted farmer.
We’ll stick to being good at being good.