Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Breaking sacred images- 800lbs of butter and 30,000lbs of cheese


  This blog entry originally quoted the responses that I recieved from the administrators of Homesteadingtoday.com.   The administrators informed me today that they do not wish me to quote their response, and consider my copying of their response to be a violation of their websites terms of service, and provided a copy  of their terms of service to me in their request to have me remove their quotes.
  While I completely respect copyright law and rights, what applies here is subject to the fair use doctrine, which allows the reproduction of copyrighted works , particularly for nonprofit educational purposes.

I do not accept  paid product placements or advertisements, donations or any other revenue from this blog.   I never have.  This is a non-profit educational purpose and has been for its entire life.

With that said, I have left the quoted portions of my and other users messages (with my and other users permission of course), but I have paraphrased what the administrators said to me.

I would much rather have used their quoted words, but I will respect their wishes to remove them.

The paraphrased entries are in bold time, with square braces around them [like this]

One of the things about blogging is that you can pretty much say anything you want.  No matter how true or false, sane or insane, you're pretty much able to state any opinion you want.  In fact, there are even places you can go to talk about your opinions, and some of those places even involve farming.
Walter objected to me posting a picture of his wife juggling some of the 800lbs of butterHope this is a fair rendition of his Lovely wife Holly.  

Homesteading today is a pretty interesting site that covers a variety of topics that relate to homesteading, and has a number of forums devoted to animals.  Each forum covers a particular type of animal, and being a primarily-pig farmer, I'm all about the pig forum.

Now this particular pig forum is moderated by two people, a fellow who uses the name highlands, and a woman who uses the name angiem2, and it contains various topics that are under discussion.  At the top of the forum is one labeled "pasturing, planting & rotational grazing", and there are 82 messages in it, at the time of this writing.  One of the messages from the moderator "highlands" caught my eye:

highlands (moderator)
[highlands claims that the vast majority of his herd of pigs diet is derived from plants growing on his thin mountain soil and short growing season.  And that Santa Claus is real and lives in a hole in his yard, an equally true statement]

Another visitor to the forum commented:

pastured pork
Diet isn't really quantity it's calorie. Highlands it sounds to me that your pigs are getting most of their calories from whey and milk products and eggs, not the forage. 

I do managed rotational grazing without feeding 2000 gallons of whey a week or eggs. Highlands your pigs diet is, on a calorie basis very little pasture. I think you have a neat system and probably great pork.

I agreed with this comment, and wrote the following to support him:   

Just a note: I challenged highlands to raise pigs without any supplemental food, offered him $10,000 to do it. Published the offer on my blog; and he declined. 

If it were a viable option to raise commercial pigs to commercial slaughter weight without supplemental feeding I'd expect to see that happening all over the country. 

you're absolutely right that the vast majority of the calories that highland produces pork from are derived from the thousands of gallons of whey, milk, cream and butter he feeds his pigs. 

$10,000 sugar mountain farm challenge

Oh yea; did I mention that highlands is Walter Jefferies, over at Sugar Mountain farm?

So I get a message from the moderator of this forum, which follows:

[The administrator AngieM2 left me a very angry message, scolding me for "insulting another user" and told me I had recieved some sort of demerit.  She swore at me, said that I was spouting excrement, and told me that I could not be skeptical about any claim that any user makes about anything, ever!   And that she owns a gun and isn't afraid to use it!]

Darn it.  I've got an infraction.  And it may never expire.   That's probably terrible.

So here's the take-home lesson -- always take whatever you see on the net, particularly those things dealing with animal husbandry or promoted practices, with a big grain of salt.  In this case, on a forum about pigs, in a topic specifically about raising pigs on pasture, you cannot bring up any sort of alternate view of the topic at hand.

In this case, even though the farmer in question advertises that he gets multiple tons of dairy products and feeds it to his pigs, his claim of most of his pigs diet coming from his poor mountain soil is something you can't even be skeptical about, not even in public.

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