Tag Archives: local food

To market, to market – get connected to your food!

We took our first hogs to the processor Thursday. It was very much bitter sweet for me, and not just due to the injuries I received in the battle to get them loaded. I had become attached to one of them – surprise, surprise. I enjoyed seeing them grow and learning about them. Pigs are intriguing animals with smarts and personality. But I understood from the beginning that we were raising food for ourselves and other people.

Except for the few tomato plants we raised and a small garden, I had become disconnected from my food. Somewhere deep in the recesses of my mind I knew from my childhood experiences with my grandparents who had a small farm outside Springville, AL., meat was once a living, breathing animal. I knew that some farmer labored to bring the lettuce, tomatoes, onions and other produce to the market. But I had allowed myself to almost totally disconnect from exactly what goes into bringing that food to market. (don’t EVEN get me started on the regulatory purgatory that exists for farmers!) In just the nine months or so we’ve been working to raise food, I’ve learned so much. I have a great deal of respect for farmers who labor to bring us our food. Regardless of their methods, it’s hard work!

However, I must say that I have a new found admiration and sense of awe for those farmers who work to bring clean, natural food to the tables of their family and neighbors without chemicals and fancy equipment. To raise meat animals with respect and regard for their well being is honorable. To raise produce in ways that minimize the risk of contamination is hard, hard work. Their days are long, their financial reward is not going to make them rich, at least not in a financial sense. Matter of fact, most that I’ve had the pleasure of meeting still hold down off farm jobs just to pay the mortgage and make ends meet. Therefore, I find their motives to be pure and deeply rooted in their desire to make a difference in this world, both for the land, the animals and for their fellow man. I’m learning that many of these farmers are Godly people and have reverence for all that He has given us. I aspire for Porter Pond Farm to make its place among them, as they are the true stewards of the earth!

To my non-farming friends, next time you are in the market, think about what went into producing whatever it is you are buying. Remember that someone, somewhere put their blood, sweat and sometimes tears, into that product in order to get it to market! I encourage you to go out and buy local food products, get in your kitchen and cook something! Put at least some of your food dollars back into your local economy, and by that I don’t mean Walmart, Kroger or Publix. If you are one of my Alabama friends, go buy some Blount county tomatoes or Chilton county peaches. If you are one of my Mississippi or Tennessee friends, go buy some Ripley tomatoes, Nesbit blueberries or delta catfish. Wherever you are, go buy something local today. You will find it more flavorful and nutritious, I promise. If you need help finding local sources, check out the sites below. It’s time we all get connected with our food and support our local farmers!

Eat Wild
Local Harvest
Mississippi Market Maker
Poultry Direct To You

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If its not one thing it’s another!

We went to the barn the other night to feed and found it “flooded”, or at least that was the word we used. So the barn wasn’t really quite flooded, but the automatic waterer in the quail coop was leaking, soaked the ground and running out into the main part of the barn. Then we had a predator to get a few of our broilers. There was just enough of a hole in the ground for them to squeeze between the bottom rail and the ground. We moved it around and left some distinct scents around it. So far so good. Monday we found a nearly drowned turkey and a chicken in about the same shape. We put them in the quail pool, which we now call the infirmary. The turkey survived – the chicken did not. Last night we left the garage door open by mistake. This morning, there were cats in there and no baby quail. Thank goodness it was only a small hatch. This has all been since Saturday!

Rosanne Rosanna Danna comes to mind a lot lately! For you younger folks, she was one of Gilda Radner’s characters on Saturday Night Live back in the 70’s. One of her tag lines was “if it’s not one thing it’s another – I mean its always something!” I’m thinking she must have been a farmer at some point because truly if it’s not one thing it’s another!

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