There is something magical about planting a seed, watching it grow then eventually harvesting and creating a dish for the family and that is one of the reasons why we try to produce as much as we possibly can here for ourselves on the farm. It always packs such a fresh flavour and you can appreciate it more when you have seen the process from start to finish and put the effort and time in, or maybe that is just the extra seasoning from the soil under your fingernails...
Meat can be a very sensitive subject, it certainly is for me as a farmer, just as much as for anyone else and when it comes to livestock there is inevitably going to have to be some soul searching and some great thought will need to be put into what the actual purpose is for the animals you decide to raise. Meat is a fantastic product and is a great part of a lot of peoples diet, but it is very much one thing to buy a packet of meat nicely prepared and sealed in plastic from a supermarket compared to raising that animal yourself, which is another ball game all together. We choose to raise all our animals with love and we have as much interaction with them as possible, they are raised on pasture and we free range as many animals as we can, any animals that cannot be free ranged, quail for example, are kept in tractors (smaller pens that can be picked up and moved so fresh pasture is still an option).
In our opinion this provides the animals with a humane, happy, healthy life, but this does bring with it some hard decisions. The animals that we have spent so much time with throughout their entire lives and grown to love have a purpose on the farm, so when the final day comes it can be a very solemn one indeed. This itself raises a question within us of why do we raise animals in the first place. Well, when the animal spends its last moments with me, completely comfortable, aware of who I am and seemingly in a normal situation, I know I can honestly say I gave them the very best life (and of course death) that I was capable of, I could never know how a factory farmed animal lived their life, but I know if I had the choice to be an animal on our farm or elsewhere, I would always hands down choose ours.
When all is said and done food production can be amazing and we think everyone should try to grow something, whether you want to have a window ledge herb garden or whether you are looking to be completely self sufficient. We feel it is very important and very interesting to know where your food comes from regardless of what scale.