Think of a time when you were on vacation and pampered… all your wants were at your finger tips. Healthy food and fresh water was always accessible. You could do whatever you wanted, when you wanted – be it lay in the sun, take a dip in the pool or lounge in the shade. You lived on your terms and enjoyed the small nuances around you. You might have even thought “THIS is the life!”
The life on our farm
That’s the kind of life we endeavor to provide for all the animals here at Chicken Thistle Farm. They are raised on pasture with the freedom to choose when, how and, for the most part, where they are going to spend sunny afternoons or rainy evenings. While we don’t pamper our animals, we do provide the best shelter, feed and range we can. Our goal is for the animals that live here to have the best quality of life that animal can have. The freedom to let a chicken be a chicken or a pig be a pig – that’s life on OUR farm.
All natural – naturally
Since the animals are really given access to what nature has to offer, we mostly leave it at that. While modern agriculture may have many “tools” to cheat unnatural conditions, we have found there’s very little need to use them. Things like antibiotics, hormones and growth enhancers (like arsenic for chickens) don’t have a home here. We ground our decisions against our values and keep chemicals out of the daily life of our flocks and herds. Not filling happy, healthy animals with manufactured chemicals just seems like the natural thing to do.
Our goal isn’t to be the biggest producer of meat – it’s simply to produce EXCELLENT meats that people can connect with. When people see their “dinner” out on pasture, months before it nourishes their body… watching the animals enjoy their natural surroundings, it nourishes their soul too. That’s why we welcome questions and visitors as well as customers who want to roll their sleeves up and be part of the process. We do this so in the busy world of modern life, we can all begin to reconnect with the origins of our food. Chickens lay eggs on their own schedule, not when we want them. Pigs grow at their own speed, not when the grill is hot. There’s a value in understanding not only the wholesome goodness the protein on the plate provides, but also being mindful and aware of the process and people that put it there.
From here to eternity - locally
There’s a certain local grocery store that sells certified organic “grass fed beef”… from Uruguay. (After looking at a map that annoyed us.) In the world today of industrial food production, global components are sourced and assembled, making what should be simple very complex. Frankly, we just think when it comes to food – local is better. Not because of “carbon footprints” or other catchy concepts – but because you can look the farmer in the eye, know the source of what you are putting in your body and keep the community of food producers strong. To that end, we source all the feed that our animals eat from local feed mills, who in turn are using locally grown inputs. So when we say local food, we mean it!
Out to pasture
What’s out in our pastures that is or will be available for sale?