Heritage breed hogs are under attack by the Michigan Department of Natural resources.
This is a picture of a Tamworth barrow that was a prize winning pig in 1920. Below is a picture of a Tamworth barrow today.
To me this is proof that the breed has been dramatically improved
structurally. They haven't went wild in the last 100 years they have
actually become more domesticated. The Invasive Species Act being rammed
through in Michigan is the wrong solution to a questionable problem.
Tamworth barrow 2012
Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund has posted a blog asking for our
help in stopping this and helping small farmers in Michigan as they
lose their livelihood.
From the FTCLDF site:
"The Michigan DNR has defined "invasive species swine" (in a December 2011 declaratory ruling),
as any pig that exhibits certain characteristics. Many of the
characteristics listed describe just about any heritage breed of swine.
Even more troubling, the DNR characteristics are often displayed in
swine that are raised outside, not in confinement. The DNR order not
only threatens the livelihoods of heritage breed hog farmers across the
State of Michigan but it also sets a very dangerous precedent across
the United States for those choosing not to raise animals in
Send an online petition to Gov. Snyder urging him to rescind the Invasive Species Act.Click Here Now!
As with anything that becomes popular or trendy, the potential is
recognized and seized by large corporations who are looking to profit
I am including a video from Mark Kastel, co-director
of the Cornucopia Institute that details some of the unbelievable
antics taking place in the organized organic movement.
If you're short on time here are some of the highlights:
Those charged with reviewing and approving additives and chemicals
for use in organic foods have in large part been affiliated with the
same corporate agribusinesses and/or food producers lobbying for their
There are currently almost 300 non-organic and synthetic compounds approved for use in organic foods.
"Independent" industry experts, who have been advising the USDA's
National Organic Standards Board on scientific matters, also appear to
have been largely supportive of synthetics in organics
Cornucopia Institute are now pursuing a pressure campaign aimed at the
organic program at the USDA, and at the National Organics Standards
Board, to persuade them to review the manipulation and misinformation
provided at the November 2011 NOSB meeting, which led to the approval of
synthetic, genetically mutated DHA and ARA oils—ingredients that have
been "confidently linked" to health problems in infants.
What I want to point out here is my original statement of the more
distant your relationship with the person who produces your food, the
more potential for corruption.
While I applaud and support
the Cornucopia Institute for their efforts to rally the American people
to hold those accountable who oversee organic standards in the U.S., I
also believe the best route to food transparency is to have a
relationship with the folks who produce your food.
That's why I have an open door policy at my farm. Folks can come visit and judge for themselves if they want to do business with me.
Complete transparency to your customers is a safeguard against corruption.
How could I say for example 'we use no chemical herbicides on our
farm' and at the same time be hosing down weeds with weed killer? If I
know customers are coming and no door is locked, no cabinet out of reach
it will deter me from such actions.
There is a myriad of
temptations to cheat even on the small farm. Farmers need
accountability. I need accountability. I need to know that my customers
have the right to inspect what I'm doing and why I'm doing it.
I gave them that right.
If you're paying with your hard earned dollars you deserve that right.
No amount of regulations or regulators is ever going to replace a relationship between two people.
Here at Spring Hill Farms
we think honesty, integrity, transparency, and accountability should be
some of the foundational principles you build your farm on.
Another story showing how oppressive local government is becoming to small farms.
The worst time to buy insurance is after you need it. It's like closing the gate after the hogs are out. I taught personal finance for 15 plus years and my counsel was always weigh the risks for insurance, most people are betting they will need insurance and the insurance company is betting you won't.
The threat to small local farmers is mounting on a daily basis. Your chance of having an issue is greater today than ever before. The Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund is a great resource fighting to help small farms.
Don't wait until you need them to become a member. I receive nothing in any way from promoting them other than the peace of mind knowing other farmers and consumers are helping fund the resistance to over regulating small farms and your right to food of your choice.