The Realities of Real Food

Posted by editor | Healthy Food | Saturday 7 August 2010 9:20 pm


Rocky milkingI was at R & C Dairy this morning, our neighbors who run a certified, grade-A, raw dairy with goats and a variety of miniature Jersey cows and mixed Jerseys. Out here in North Texas, anyone within 20 minutes is a neighbor.

Besides the milk, yogurt, kefir, whey, goat cheese, goat meat, raw honey and eggs, Carol and Rocky have expanded into more organic produce, pick-your-own berries, and fruit trees. They already had lots of customers, some who drive hours to get raw milk, but their new store on the corner of the highway has brought in lots more locals.

“But you had that last week!

One thing that comes to light when we moderns begin to purchase real food from a  local farm is the tragic disconnect we have today with the rhythms of basic farm production and the realities of real food. Carol related some of the comments and questions she gets about produce that was available last week that is no longer “in the line-up.”

Modern major grocery stores have access to national and global distributors that serve up produce and eggs and dairy products from thousands of producers in varying states, countries, climates, and even seasons. It is an amazing luxury, but it’s also far from fresh and we have no connection with who produced it and with what level of care.

On the local farm, especially in Texas, the heat can shut down the egg producers. Hens go on strike. Each category of produce has its growing cycle and its season, and when it’s over, it’s over, and weather plays a major role there also. Goats and cows must take a break to have a baby every year (getting “refreshed”) in order to continue milk production. At R&C, the goat girls have gone “on break” during part of the winter, and we all enthusiastically await that amazing, fresh spring goat milk that comes back “on line” when cute little goat babies romp all over R&C. As the customer base has grown, Rocky has expanded the herds. It takes more girls and more seasons to “time” breeding that will keep milk in production year round, though they have managed to keep cow milk more available.

No matter where you live, be thankful for the faithful, skilled, always-working small farmers who do what they do because they love it, so we who are blessed to be in their vicinity can take good advantage of what they lovingly produce.

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