Friday, July 15, 2011

Food For Thought

Let's talk.....



With my talking, I am sure you could not hear the squeals,
but if you listen to this next clip and turn up your sound (the whole way),
you will hear it in the distance.
(Imagine it 10 times louder and that is how I heard it!)


Normally my mornings are peaceful, 
and the soundtrack is usually the music of the birdsongs,
interrupted now and then by a rooster crowing....
idyllic, tranquil, heavenly (not the rooster).

Occasionally, though, when the wind blows in just the right direction,
my soundtrack becomes one of a horror movie
and I am reminded that not all farm animals live the happy life that mine do.

No, way too many live a life of horror.

So the sounds that I am hearing are coming from this farm, 
less than a mile away as the crow flies.


That low, flat metal-roofed building houses a herd of pigs....
From piglet to slaughterhouse, that metal building is the only life they know.
Cramped quarters, standing in their own and others' urine and feces...
eating and excreting, day in and day out...
never out in the sun or fresh air,
never out to run and play.
No, this is more factory than farm.
And it's inhabitants know nothing but filth and fear.

Sadly, this is just a small representation of how farm animals are treated in this country,
where farming has become industrialized, and the small family farm has all but disappeared.
Farmers no longer know their animals as beings, but rather as "protein"....
and those beings are no longer treated as anything but protein.

Now, don't get me wrong.
I love my bacon as much as anyone.
But it makes you think when you hear that sound,
if having a BLT is really worth it.

I implore you.....
make an effort to search out meat that comes from animals who were humanely raised.
Find small farmers who raise their own animals for meat in small herds....
herds that have the pleasure of spending their lives out of doors with room to run.
Buying organic will not accomplish this end.
The only difference between organic meat and non- is what the animal was fed.
It has nothing to do with the life that that animal led.

It is time to change our food habits.
It's time to take farming away from the large corporations,
and give it back to the farmers.
It is time that we realize we have the responsibility of humanely
caring for the animals that have been entrusted to us.
Photo courtesy of babyanimalz.com
They have no voice....
except the one that blows on the breeze,
and is heard by so few.

Back off my soapbox....
I will leave you with one last "tail" for the week.



This is a picture of the road in front of our farm.
Up at the top, where the road curves, is our pond - off to the right.
Further up the road is our driveway, old log cabin, and the front pasture.
You can see in this picture a yellow sign.


Now, let's turn around and look the opposite way down the road behind us.


What's that along the left side of the road??


Yes, it's our wacky ducks on their daily walkabout.
And this is exactly why we have hung several of these large metal signs.
We have so few cars that go down our road in a day's time,
but at least those few cars are well warned.

What a perfect world it would be if everyone was concerned with the welfare
of our precious critters!  We might even treat each other better, too!

Have a wonderful weekend, wherever you are!
I am headed back out to "smooch" my chicklets!

13 comments:

Jocelyn said...

Thank you for this post. Many people don't realize this exists, but it does, and it's so unfortunate. Long live the small farm! We know how to treat our animals, and we do it right.

JudiB said...

I just mentioned the family farm in my last few postings. With the prices and the developers how can any young couple even begin t buy a farm let alone make the payments today. Equipment prices..everything. Families that are from farms are even looking at the farm knowing that they can not make enough if they keep it going to survive. Most farms in our area have one if not both on the farm working at other jobs off the farm as well as trying to keep the a farm going. This is exhausting but they love there farms that much to do this year after year. Our governments are doing little or nothing to make sure the family farm keeps going. Our health is paying for this type of farming that has taken over. I could go on for hours on this subject!!!! We have a large Amish community. One thing that fascinates me is just the way they handle the purchase of farms. I do not agree with all of there practises for sure..but they manage to have a family farm atmosphere and not resort to what we see in these commercial farms dotting our landscape. There is so much more that could be done. How sad!!!
Well now we can both hopefully have a good weekend now we have all this off our chests..lol.
Take care Bev..enjoy. Garden looks amazing!!!

Judi B.

Sharon said...

Great post! Two years ago we started raising a few pigs for our own and a few friends. Pigs are VERY easy to raise and don't take too much space. They love to get sprinkled with the hose and run around like dogs - because they have the room! In the fall we take them to the butcher and the meat is much better than anything you would get in the store.

kpaints said...

It's just horrifing! I could get up on my box but I am shutterig too much. How sad and it makes me angry that we have come to this.

I am glad I don't eat meat. I never really liked it and since I had to take it out of my diet I really dislike it.

I am just at a loss for words...I hate that you have to listen to that!

Junebug said...

How sad that some farms have resorted to this treatment. I could also get on my soapbox. I know it is hard these days to be farmers and make a living unless you go huge. But you would think they also could be treat there animals kindly.

Anonymous said...

Hi Bev, i am not disagreeing with you at all about how those animals are mistreated, however having lived on a small hog farm for about 7 years I know that hogs like to squeal really loud when waiting to be fed, so maybe that will ease your mind alittle when you hear them squealing it may not be a distress squeal but just a sound that they make while waiting to be fed...

missy max said...

Your post made me cry...The grass isn't always greener on the other side...

countrynmore said...

That is so sad about the hogs and other animals that live under those conditions. I don't eat ham. I think that pigs are so adorable, and just like any other animal, I hate the cruelty that they must endure. I wish that more animals had a chance to live like the animals on your farm.

Tree Hugger said...

Once upon a time - I loved to have a great steak or bacon for breakfast, or a big slab of BBQ baby back ribs. But having learned about the aweful conditions and inhuman treatment of commercial live stock- what they are fed and how they are raised and how they are slaughtered - I quit eating pork or beef and seldom eat chicken. There are so many wonderful fruits and veggies that are packed with the nutrients needed --- why kill an animal for a few minutes of selfish desires.

Karen said...

That kind of farming is horrible. It must not be easy to live so close to one of those. I often wonder how those farmers can live with seeing the animals in such cruel living conditions day after day. What kind of person can do that.

Anke said...

Great post Bev! That's exactly why we've been trying to eat more locally grown food (of any kind) around here.

My Primitive Creations by Tonya said...

Growing up on a farm like yours I've always hated what our country has forced framers to become to make a living. After a while they don't even see there animals as animals they see them simply as a way to make money.. Auto feed them so they don't ever have to feel the pain and suffering the anamils go threw.
When I had a small farm of my own I raised a calf, a pig and some chickens to stock our freezer and Ihated it every time they went to the butchers. but they were cared for and loved evey day of there life.. Now it is just me no kids so I buy locally for myself..
Sadly tho the farmers are becoming fewer with each passing year and it is harder and harder to buy locally grown meat.
Your farm is what makes you happy so when you hear the distant cries from the farm next door find one of your critters and give them some extra lovin...

Tonya

Maura @ Lilac Lane Cottage said...

This sure makes us think about where our food comes from. We have a local butcher shop in the little town not far from us and I've mentioned to my hubby that we should start buying our meat from there. After listening to your video and reading your post this makes me more determined to shop there. Thanks for posting this Bev...I think a lot of us could use a "wake up" post like this once in a while. It's so easy to get caught up in the convenience of shopping the big chain stores for EVERYTHING. It's time for hubby and I to wake up and become more aware of where our food comes from. Great Post!
Maura :)

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