Farm Dog Rosie’s New Puppies!

Rosie with new born puppies
Rosie with new born puppies

Rosie had her puppies on May 3rd 2013.  She had 11 pups, 4 females, 7 males.  7 are black and white, like Rosie and 4 are brown and white.  We are taking $100 deposit to reserve your puppy.  People will choose their pup in the order we get their deposit.  Pups will be $250 each and come registered with papers. 

English Shepard’s are an excellent farm dog for helping move animals.  They are a herding breed, not necessarily a great guard breed (although we have used them for some guarding and they are alert to predators).  Even if you don’t have a farm, they are excellent companions if you’re the sort of person who likes doing things with a dog and always having your dog with you.  If exposed to a variety of stimuli from an early age, they are extremely adaptable.  They can be a little suspicious of new situations and people.New Born Pups

If you have never experienced the unconditional love and devotion of man’s best friend, you will be amazed by how eager to please and alert these pups will be.  They are very easy to train if you spend time with them.

 

Make Way For Ducklings!

Khaki Campbell ducklings only 1 day old!
Khaki Campbell ducklings only 1 day old!

Our new ducklings arrived this morning!  They are Khaki Campbell, the leading egg layer for duck breeds.  They are a lovely brown color and their down is so soft and fuzzy.  They are the sweetest!  We are enjoying watching them play in the water and explore their world!

Earth Day in Cadillac

IMG_1712We attended Earth Day in Cadillac on April 21st, 2013.  We had a little spinning demonstration and Lovisa sold her pot holders and hats.  We enjoyed the live music and loved all the demonstrations and the live plant give aways.  The day was chilly and breezy, but we enjoyed the scenery and the good company.

Pastured Pork, Health Benefits!

Read entire article at this site.

The Benefits of Pastured PorkIMG_0860

  1. Pastured pork is more nutritious. Pastured pork has higher levels of vitamin E, healthy Omega-3 fatty acids,and many other nutrients than conventionally raised pork.
  2. Pastured pork is more humane. Pigs raised on pasture have more than just freedom from confinement, they have the freedom to behave in natural ways. Pastured sows create nests for their piglets, and live in family groups, just like wild sows. Even sows that are supplemented with grain or slops spend much of their day rooting and grazing in the sun and fresh air. Pastured pork producers in the North and Midwest generally overwinter their animals in open hoop buildings on deep straw. Here, too, the pigs are free to engage in natural rooting and socializing behaviors, and can enjoy fresh air and sunshine while protected from harsh winter weather.
  3. Pastured pork is better for the environment. CAFOs store manure in huge cesspools that stink for miles around and can leak into groundwater supplies, poisoning them. On pasture, the pigs’ manure enriches the soil, rather than poisoning it.
  4. Pastured pork is safer for farm workers. Hog hands on factory hog farms have unusually high rates of certain diseases, especially respiratory diseases. A study by the University of Iowa found that over 70% complained of acute bronchitis or other respiratory ailments. The American Lung Association reports that approximately 58% of hog workers at CAFOs have chronic bronchitis. Every year, a few workers die from falling into manure pits, usually by asphyxiation from the toxic fumes.
  5. Pastured pork is better for rural communities. In addition to the horrific stench and the potential for groundwater contamination, hog CAFOs ruin the economies of local communities. Due to poor worker conditions, job turnover in CAFOs is very high, and many workers are transients. Additionally, many CAFOs have absentee owners, so the profits rarely return to the local community. Most pastured pork producers are small family farmers whose profits are repaid directly to the community, and who provide smaller numbers of jobs, but steadier, safer employment.
  6. Pastured pork is safer for human health. Pastured pork is less likely to be contaminated with E.coli. The antibiotics fed constantly to pigs in CAFOs to keep them healthy in stressed, overcrowded conditions also have far-reaching human health effects. Antibiotic-resistant diseases are on the rise, and in 2002, researchers discovered antibiotic-resistant bacteria floating on dust particles in the air in and around hog confinement plants. A strain of antibiotic-resistant staph infection known as MRSA has recently spread to the general population, and rates are particularly high among communities with hog confinement farms. An outbreak of swine flu in April 2009 may also have begun on 950,000+ head hog confinement farm in Mexico.
  7. Pastured pork increases agricultural biodiversity. In the United States, most pork comes from just four breeds of pig – Yorkshire, Landrace, Hampshire, and Duroc – because these breeds are most suitable for confinement breeding operations. Most pastured pork, however, comes from hardy, self-sufficient heirloom breeds, such as the Tamworth, Hereford, and Gloucestershire Old Spot.

Is pastured pork more flavorful? That’s a matter of opinion, but many people believe it is. Gourmet restaurants are increasingly willing to pay top dollar for pork raised on pasture.

New Chicks Arrive!

Lovisa and Ellen count the new baby chicks.
Lovisa and Ellen count the new baby chicks.

We just brought in our new batch of layer chicks!  This is a variety of different breeds that were available from Murray McMurray Hatchery.  These varieties include: New Hampshire Reds, Silver Spangled Hamburgs, Light Brahmas, Pearl White Leghorns, Blue Andalusians, and Black Minorcas.  

baby chicks
baby chicks

We also got the random chick that Murray McMurray includes with every order, but that very night one of our barn cats, Spot slipped in and caught that random chick.  The only consolation is that the random chick is usually a male and they don’t lay eggs.  Spot, we hope, is very sorry for what he has done.

Pork Roast

2-4 pounds of pastured heritage pork roast

1 onion

2 apples

salt & pepper to taste

Rinse the pork under cold water and place in either a slow cooker or a roasting pan for the oven.  Add 1 cup water, a chopped onion, chopped apples and salt and pepper to taste.  In the slow cooker cook on a low heat 8-12 hours until tender.  In the oven bake at 350 for 2-3 hours, until tender.  Check while cooking for doneness and tenderness.  You can tell when meat is done, when you poke it with a fork and no blood comes out.  You can tell it is tender and ready to eat when you can easily pull it apart.

Serve warm and enjoy with family and friends.  You can serve it with vegetable side dishes of your choice.

Homemade Organic Chicken Broth

1 pastured organic chicken-bones and skin mostly (after you’ve cooked it and eaten a meal of it and picked all the meat off the bones)

4 quarts water

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

Put the chicken bones and skin, plus any water or dripping from cooking, into a large stock pot and add more water and vinegar.  Bring the stock to a boil, then gently simmer for 24-48 hours.  When finished strain the bones and skin through a colander and use the broth to make your favorite soup.  This recipe is totally salt free, when you make your soup, add salt to taste.

You can use this same basic recipe for turkey, duck, or even goat bones.  To make it more interesting, feel free to add an onion, your favorite herbs and celery.

Why it’s good for you:

Bone broth made with vinegar captures calcium and other minerals in the broth.  Consuming bone broth regularly is important for general health and nutrition, having minerals helps your body absorb vitamins.

Order now for 2013!

Deadlines are coming up to sign up for our heritage chickens & turkeys.  

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After the dates listed at our Pastured Poultry page we will not be able to order them, or the growing season will be too short to raise them.  We are already starting to take orders on our chickens, turkeys, ducks, hogs, rabbits and vegetable shares.

Spring is almost upon us and the time to breed our sows for summer births is now!  If you want to eat the healthiest, best tasting pork out there, join our hog share program!

Rabbits also like to give birth in the spring.  Let us know right away how many rabbits you hope to get this year.

Vegetables shares get snatched up quick, contact us right away to get your share!  We will soon need a waiting list.

CSA and share programs work for us small farms because they assist us with start-up costs, such as purchasing seeds and feed for livestock.  This allows us to spend the growing season working on the farm, raising the food, instead of worrying we may not have a customer waiting after investing so much.  Signing up right away helps us know who we are growing food for.

Contact us if you have any questions.  Come out for a tour and free samples!  We can’t wait to meet you!