Thursday, April 21, 2011

Choices in Food

These days, many People in the so called "Developed World" are increasingly concerned about the quality of mass produced "cheap" Food served up from Conventional Agriculture. We 3 C's are no exception.  Our Journeys into this arena come from:  careful research on Food, Agriculture and Health, plus knowing intimately what our Bodies need for Health.  Our approaches have evolved over the last 15 years and they are not taken lightly.  When we deviate, our Bodies know it. Admittedly, the 2 Women of this household have been the front runners and feel the strongest on these initiatives, but Richard is right there along side.

These are the underpinnings for our Food Choices:
  • We eat Locally as much as is possible and reasonable.  That means most of our Food is low on Food Miles lessening our use of Oil and impact on Global Warming.  Further, most of money stays in our local community.
  • We choose to eat from these Soils, which helps us to stay connected to the Land and the place we call Home.
  • We eat Seasonally, which is less expensive and keeps our Bodies in rhythm with Natural Cycles.
  • We eat Organic. While it may not be certified Organic, it is chemical free to the greatest of our capabilities.  We choose not to add to the chemical load of the Earth, the Grower, and our Bodies.
  • We do not eat GMOs.  We believe Genetically Modified Organisms overextend the role of the Human and tinker with Nature without fully knowing the consequences. 
  • We do our best to purchase Fair Trade, initiatives which assume a living wage and fair treatment of workers. This includes: Coffee and Chocolate.
  • We try to eat Food from Healthy Soils and we try to contribute toward the restoration of Healthy Soils. Soil, after all, is Life.
  • We do not support Big Agriculture where Small Farmers are put out of business and the Land is enslaved for corporate profits.
  • We do eat Meat. We recognize that for something to live that another Being must die.  We believe in the dignity of all Creation.  Animals which provide us with Food should be treated with dignity and respect.  When the Animal is close to being slaughtered, we put ourselves in a place of Gratitude for that ultimate Gift. We try to be mindful of that sacrifice in every bite.
  • We abhor the treatment of Animals in Big Business. We do not eat Meat where the Animal was a part of Big Business. They don't ride on one of those prison like trucks, nor are they enslaved in large feedlot operations amidst piles of their own waste. 
  • We abhor the conditions of Workers in Large Industrial Meat Packing Plants. We believe that the violence to which they bear witness is not good for them, their families or their communities.  We know that in many cases the people who work there are marginalized from the larger society. 
  • We eat only the amount of Meat that our Bodies need. And we do not waste Meat.
  • We raise Chickens for Meat and Eggs of our own consumption.  (We raise them for companionship too.) We purchase Turkey, Pork and Beef from Farmers that we know. We seek to make sure that the Animal is treated with dignity and grace by the Farmer and that the Farmer receives a fair wage. 
  • We are especially concerned about the point of slaughter.  One of the best circumstances that we have been privileged to be a part has been when the Farmer would thank the Animal just prior to slaughter. This simple act by Terry Jacobson set the standard for our subsequent choices.
  • We want the Animals to have had a healthy happy lifestyle.  We believe that they know they are to be used to support life. These things are the very least that we can do for them.
  • We know the Farmer who raises the Meat.
  • We ask about the living conditions for Animals. We visit the Farms. We pay attention to the spiritual energy of the Animal. We look into their eyes. Those eyes tell us the health and vitality of the Animal.  We choose not to put into our Bodies anything that is less than vibrant, nor to support a kind of human constructed world where Living Beings have only Disposable Value.
  • We prefer Old Heritage Breeds as opposed to those genetically engineered "quick to slaughter" types.
  • We do not want Animals to have had antibiotics or growth hormones.  This is for the sake of the Animal, the Consumer, the Earth.  These Drugs do not go away. They just recycle. Whatever we put out there ultimately comes back to ourselves.
  • We grow as much of our Food as possible.  We preserve a lot of our own Food by canning, drying, freezing.
  • We grow our Food in as much as we can know according to "Nature's Cycles".
  • We are particular about what Animals have been fed.
  • We like Animals to have had access to Pasture and to eat more of their Natural Diet.
  • Their Health and Vitality is essential for their own sake as living Beings of Creation; their Health and Vitality (or lack thereof) is transferred to us.
  • We try not to use Foods which have been the product of violence; that violence then becomes a part of the consumer.
  • We like Wild Meat.
  • We use to the greatest extent we possibly can "Whole Foods", those Foods without additives. If there are additives, we make sure we know what they are.  We avoid additives which we cannot pronounce or that Grandmothers would not recognize.
  • We avoid MSG, Partially Hydrogenated oils, Food Colorings, High Fructose Corn Syrup.
  • We use more Natural Sugars. This includes eating Fruits in Season, and using Honey and Molasses.
  • We note that we feel different when we are "off diet".
  • We have "gone on vacation" from the above, when we eat elsewhere. We increasingly are unable to do this. We surely do not want to offend. Quite simply, these beliefs are very important to us.
  • We do our best to abide by these beliefs.
  • We feel richly blessed we live in a time where such choices and actions are indeed possible.
Photo above:  Richard had a wonderful meal waiting for us for dinner last night.  It included what he called Smothered Venison (his own version of Swiss Steak), Boiled Potatoes, and Greens.  The Venison was local (a gift of the Deer).  The Veggies smothering it were mostly raised by us in the last growing season. The Potatoes were organic.  They were not local.  The Greens were proudly produced by a local Farmer who has Green Houses newly up and running. The vitality of the Food just seemed to leap right off the plate.

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