Farm Employee Handbook

I have been working on a handbook I titled the following: “The Farmer’s Handbook to Transparency & Employee Conduct.” I am happy to announce that I am nearly finished with this and will be publishing it soon. If you would like to order hard copies please let me know! Also, pass this information along to those who might utilize it most!

COMING SOON!

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Certified Humane App

A new App is available for people to locate Certified Humane meat.  What does that mean?  It means that an animal has to have been raised on a farm that has been certified to raise animals in a humane way according to HFAC.  Check out the article for more information.

Humane Farm Animal App Article

You can also access this next link for downloading the App:  Certified Humane App.

I am not advocating this App, nor am I discouraging its use at this time.  I think it is an interesting time-stamp in the humane animal treatment timeline of progress.  I think this is a good thing, however, as we all learned with the Affordable Care Act, it can mean well and end up doing harm.  We shall see how it effects this sector and this particular public issue.

One last link the article offers is about checking for Certified Humane near you:  Shop, Certified Humane.

PETA & False Animal Cruelty Videos

In a recent article, PETA was accused of backing a false video of animal cruelty.  The video takes place on a small farm where 25-30 cows are milked (by the way, this is a consistent theme for PETA, targeting small old farms).  The funny thing is, that PETA has no idea what is animal cruelty and what is natural effects from life on animals.

In the video they recently submitted to authorities, the cows, typically clean from manure and feces, were run through a manure containment area and covered themselves in manure.  The video called out the farmer for mistreating his animals and for sores on the cows feet.  Farmers who run their cows through foot baths regularly still fight these same issues.  Unless your ready to sign up and be there the moment the cow poops, expect their to be some challenges with keeping them in manure free facilities.  But that is not the issue at hand.  The issue is, PETA is on a PR campaign that is far from the truth and is yet to be disciplined by the Justice department for their wrongful acts. 

Read the story, watch the video, then tell me what you think!  I really would appreciate and respect all opinions shared.  Thanks!

Article:  PETA Accuses Dairy Farmer of Animal Cruelty.

Farm Employees Impact on Animal Welfare

In a recent article I read, “Hiring, Training Employees Key to Good Animal Welfare” from BlackburnNews.com, I really thought this was a great concept and idea.

The fact of the matter is that less than 1% of the population farms in the United States, and the 99%+ have no idea what its like to work around these animals. The media creates perceived notions that drive for advocate groups to protect animals. So as the less than 1% we need to start doing things a little better. We need to be more transparent, more open, more educating to those around us.

How does a farm become transparent to the public eye?

Great question, but you may not like it! Invite them to your farm, show them what you do. Afraid? Are you doing things that you know wouldn’t be accepted by others? Would those things be accepted by other farmers and ranchers?

Most of the farmers I know do a great job of keeping the public involved, educated, and those farmers at the end of the day are understood and appreciated by the public. When a farmer doesn’t see the importance for transparency, they are only creating excuses for changes that need to be made around their farm or ranch that should be done regardless.

As a way of helping facilitate and provide more information to farmers about these types of things, I plan to create and release guides to help farmers and ranchers better train and prepare themselves and their employees for becoming more transparent and open to the public. My goal would be to reverse the trend on public outcry against farmers, but instead have farmers setting the record straight for people to know and understand.

Link to article: http://blackburnnews.com/agrimedia/agrimedia-news/2014/06/19/hiring-training-right-people-cited-as-key-to-good-animal-welfare/

Common Ground on Animal Welfare

Today, I’m sharing with you a link that I found to be a great article about bridging the gap between those for animal welfare laws and those against it. Proposition 2 passed into law will allow egg-laying chickens to be able to spread their wings in the cages. To some this is great news, to others, it may not be. Consider those in poverty in this country, is it fair that the poor now need to pay higher costs for eggs at the grocery store? Why would the cost go up? Well, if farmers can no longer produce as many eggs in a specific area, the egg production will go down. If you remember from economics class, that as supply goes down, so long as demand stays the same, the price will go up. So, the middle class requested better animal welfare, but the poor suffer. I’m not against Proposition 2, however, I feel like we should take care of our own people above and beyond the care of our animals. This goes back to my last post… how much would you be willing to pay for your food? Should pigs and cows all have access to sunshine, rain, grass, etc? How much more would you be willing to pay to make that happen?

One thing we all forget is our willingness to follow through on what we say. For instance, we all want better welfare for the animals… but am I now willing to pay 20% or 40% or even 100% more for my food to allow that to happen? Is it still good to have strict animal welfare laws, but farmers can no longer feed all the people in the world? There is a delicate balance. I think this article talks about that a little bit. We all need to be mindful of how our thoughts and actions will impact those who are less fortunate than we are. What is more important to you: every mouth fed or comfortable animals? Can we have both? I think we can, but it doesn’t seem like that will happen anytime soon.

What ideas do you have for helping our society find a middle ground? Please leave your comments!

Here is the article: Finding Middle Ground on Animal Welfare