Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Piggin' Out :-)

If you are a are excused from reading this unashamedly carnivorous post!

For a very long time we have not eaten pork. I know some people have objections to the friendly pig due to the possibility of parasites in the flesh and for the piggish way they are raised. Of course these are concerns, but that was not the reason we stopped eating it.

Most animals who are bred for food have the most horrendous lives. Chickens raised in battery cages are often de-beaked and de-clawed. Their world is a tiny cage, they are overfed to reach maturity quickly and as a result their legs cannot support their weight. Most beef is raised in feedlots on corn rather than giving them green pastures to graze. They are transported in inhumane ways to the abatoir and have a very sad ending.

My green conscience and my frugal wallet never stretched to Woolworths organic meats so we had to search for another option. About 3 years ago we started getting our free range lamb and chickens as well as grass fed organic beef through Go Natural, but no pork.

Last December on the way to visit my folks I saw a sign for the Happy Hog Organic Pig Farm. Thus began the thought...and this weekend my parents stopped in there on the way to us to get us a supply of pork products.

Last night we had the most delicious bangers with our home grown spinach and baby potatoes.

This morning we had french toast with home made blueberry sauce and Happy Hog bacon. Very yummy! To make the blueberry sauce you need 2 cups of blueberries, 1/2 cup sugar heated together. Add to that 1 tablespoon cornflour mixed into a 1/3 cup of water. Simmer until thickend.

While I enjoy eating meat products, I know raising animals for meat requires intensive land use and this makes it very "ungreen" to eat. But by making sure that our food is produced in an eco friendly way it alleviates the pressue on the environment as well as helps to bring the price of organic meat down. A simple thing of demand and supply - if more people choose organic products over feedlot meat, then the more farmers will change their habits.

What if there were not meat? Well, I could happily go without and I have proven that to myself. About 8 years ago we ate vegetarian for 2 years for health reasons. I felt great, we weren't hungry, but the kids and Superman did miss their meat.


Christine said...

Well done on finding an ethical source for pork! We buy our lamb from a local farm and always have some in the freezer. Our chicken is free range although our consumption has dropped considerably since becoming more aware of how even free-range birds are kept. Pork would have to be my fave meat - I have a half German background and loooove roast pork with mashed potatoes, plenty of gravy, crackling and sauerkraut!! Soo good! Your blueberry and bacon breaky looks most appealing! :)

Wendy said...

Yes, Christine, free range is not necessarily "free range" is it?!

They often are just in long sheds but are cram packed without access to outdoors.

Our chickens come from Spier Wine Estate and this is the best that I can give you to see how they are reared:

grammie g said...

Hi Wendy...I have no problem with your "piggin' out"
You have done very well by your family being aware of what you eat and its sources!!
It sure looks good to me.
If I lived near you I would invite my self over for dinner!! ; }

Patsy said...

I try to get all my meats at Cloverfield Meats which is a natural, organic farm just a couple of miles south of where I live. (Illinois, USA) The taste is so different from what you get at the market. It costs a bit more but I know the animals were treated humanely and no antibiotics or growth hormones were used. And I see the chickens running around when I get my eggs.

Lois Evensen said...

Ah, yes, that animal protein is good stuff. :) My son tried the veggie route and we accommodated him when he visited. On one visit he suddenly reached for the steak and has been back to beef (and other meats) ever since. Brain food.

Tanya said...

I applaud your sentiments and also the others who have commented that they too are conscious eaters. I recently posted a similar story too about the broader aspects of meat and the environment,
There have been some knee jerk reactions to meat raising whereas I think we need a more balanced approach. I've also really enjoyed your updated post about all the fruit you have managed to grow around your small patch.