Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Animal matters

I was watching the ABC Evening news last night and saw a disgusting expose of a huge, factory sized dairy farm, and the abuse of the animals there. Even if the hidden cameras hadn't filmed the abuse, the relative squalor and practices under which these poor cows live was enough to make me want to never buy dairy products again. It made me think about some programs Lisa Ling did for Oprah's show a year or two ago, exposing the dark sides of some pig farms, chicken farms, and possibly the worst, puppy mills in Amish country.

Later last evening, I caught part of a Dan Rather report on the HDNET channel. It was about a small town in Vermont (Hardwick). A once thriving town that was dying after the granite mines shut down, local like-minded citizens decided to rally around the concept of a full circle food focus for their town. There is a seed farm (High Mowing Seeds), a compost farm, and locals are now farming food for the local markets and cooperatives. There is a restaurant that was started by donations from locals and uses primarily those things that are produced locally: vegetables, meat, and dairy products. The waste from the restaurant is sent to the composting farm. The once thriving dairy that had closed down was purchased by a group of young men who now produce artisan cheeses and tofu. It was such an inspiration, I ordered the seed catalog from HMS today and hope to implement some of their ideas in my own lifestyle this coming year.

On a lighter note, my friend Debra sent me this YouTube video this past week and it just melted my heart. There is absolutely nothing like the love of an animal to rock my world.

AFTER WORD: For some reason, I wasn't able to change the color on the hyperlink to the video I have mentioned. If you place your cursor over the word "video" it should link you to YouTube.


Anonymous said...

Martie, I really know how you feel about those dairy farms, etc. So much to say here about those places. We've changed our habits in food to avoid places like that but it is difficult when origin of product statements aren't on products. There's a Central Market in Ft. Worth we patronize that has about the best selection to coinside with what we believe about health of ourselves and the greater environment. A lotta things were abandoned when people went to Uruk, the city. Sometimes I think we left our brains in the country when we moved to big cities. Thanks for the post, Martie.

Taos Sunflower said...

Jack: I agree on your comment about leaving brains behind when moving to the city. Everyone is looking for an easier life and along the way, it's just made things more complicated. Have you seen "King Corn"? If you haven't, I highly recommend. Also "the Real Dirt on Farmer John". Both excellent, intelligent, indie films.

Taos Sunflower said...
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Anonymous said...

No, neither one, but with your recommendation, I plan to see them. I really liked your fog photograph.