When most people think of a cow, they probably picture that Chic-Fil-A Holstein. The irony is that while many Holsteins do enter the beef supply, they are not considered a beef breed. Cattle come in countless different breeds with two primary purposes. There are dairy breeds focusing on efficient milk production, beef breeds focusing on efficient beef production, and dual purpose breeds which feature characteristics of both beef and dairy breeds.
Society as a whole has decided to call all cattle/bovines cows, and that alone has made it harder for farmers to have conversations about what we do because it almost creates a language barrier. In order to talk to consumers, we also end up calling most of our animals cows, but it can be a struggle because when we’re here at home, or at an industry event, they’re definitely not all cows.
This week social media has been rocked by racially charged events in Minnesota. Unfortunately, this is just one in a string of similar events, but this one seems different.
Saturday one of my substituted items in my grocery pickup order was Keebler mint cookies in place of Great Value mint cookies. Free upgrade, right?! Unfortunately not in this house thanks to food allergies. My oldest son Dominic loves to have cookies as a treat after dinner, but he can’t safely eat the Keebler brand because their chocolate contains milk, one of his many allergens.
In the last year and a half I’ve really refined my process, and with the recently expanded interest in eating meals at home as well as grocery pickup/delivery, I thought I’d share. I work Monday through Friday, and during normal times, I spend a couple of hours a day commuting. Sundays are usually busy with church and such, so Saturday mornings are my preferred time for errands.
We’ve been feeding the milk cows a TMR for many years. Until last fall, it was fairly complex, including a specially formulated multi-ingredient commercial blend. Last summer we made a decision to simplify the ration to include only corn and corn silage we raise, alfalfa hay we were purchasing from a neighbor, dried distillers grains (DDGs) and soybean meal. Now market conditions have led us to add a little complexity.
The last couple of weeks have definitely been a new challenge, but I think I’m starting to get the hang of it (even though I definitely still hope they can both get back to daycare this week). Here’s what I think we’re doing right, and what I think we can improve:
I spend a little time in some Facebook groups for moms, and I see a lot of misinformation about food and food production in that space, and it has really reignited my passion for sharing real life stories from a real life farm. I also, generally, have a lot to say and kind of need an outlet.
Recently, an activist from the group Mercy For Animals took a job on a Colorado dairy farm. While the farm was paying this person to care for their cows, the … Continue reading Report Not Record
About a month ago, David and I did something we’ve never done before. We took the day off and went to a cattle sale – and we actually bought something! … Continue reading Jersey Girls