My former vegetarian of a wife recently purchased half of a half beef from a local farmer, which she split with a co-worker. The two of them compared multiple local farmers/ranchers and ultimately decided on this farm. I imagine the farmer’s blog explains why they chose the farm, but I think economy also factored in. Which is why we weighed and calculated it all as we crammed our freezer full of meat.
Over the last few years, we’ve slowly increased our consumption of meat (not hard for a vegetarian), though we’re still way under the average for Americans, which I suspect is partly due to the cost of the meat we buy, our enjoyment of alternative protein sources (I actually like fake sausage better than some of the cheap pork varieties), and because of the litany of health and environmental reasons for doing so. These are among the reasons we have 3 noisy chickens in our back yard – we know they’re treated well, we know their diet, and we know what was involved in the lifespan of the “product”. Oh, and the eggs are really good.
I’m not going to get in to all the stuff about the state of commercial feedlot operations, the treatment of cattle or anything because it seems like there’s so much already written about it. Suffice to say we’ve managed to get a cow who’s trip through the food system is one that we can get behind while at the same time supporting local businesses, reducing the amount of oil used in the production of our beef, and lastly, but not insignificantly, saved some money.
The initial judgement of the product will likely begin tonight.