The Same Story

Discussing a dairy farming family she met in Nova Scotia, Ellen Gustafson writes:

Along with a cup of hot tea served with their own raw milk, they gave me insight into the issues facing medium-sized farms in Nova Scotia. It was a story that could have been told by diary farmers anywhere in the world; their complaints were that universal. Consolidation makes it difficult to compete on price. They believe in the ethical treatment of animals raised for food. They fear they won’t be able to keep their agrarian lifestyle intact for the next generation. They face frustration that big-box, processed “junk” is sold legally as food, while the sale of their fresh, raw, unpasteurized whole milk is illegal where they live.



14 comments on “The Same Story

  1. nebraskadave says:

    Bill, ha, I too drag my feet when it comes to updating computers. It’s such a complicated task to get it all done and working again. Then transferring all the applications and for me personal stuff into a new computer is worse than taking a whipping in the town square.

    Sadly, subsidized big Ag has made it virtually impossible for local chemical free growing to actually make a living growing good food. In almost every case that I know, outside income has to supplement the financial stability of the endeavour. Even when I was growing up, my Dad always had a full time outside job. He, like me, just liked farming the land. I for one am glad that there are folks out there on a grass roots level, like you and Cherie, that still keep the local chemical free food market alive and well.

    You mentioned in a comment that your neighbor killed 200 deer on his property. If they can’t be sold, what do they do with all that meat? It would be a shame to waste it all. We have a rendering service here but of course it cost money for them to come and take the carcus away. I suspect it ends up in dog food or some other kind of pet food. Gosh, that’s a lot of deer. We here in Nebraska can’t even do any thing with a road kill deer. It usually lays beside the road for days until the county finally comes and takes it away.

    OK, Bill, be brave. Step into computer update with positive thoughts. 🙂

    Have a great computer update day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bill says:

      Until last year it was illegal to eat deer killed off season with a kill permit. You were required to actually bury the deer. The main reason I didn’t get a kill permit in the past is because I don’t agree with wasting the deer that way. But this year my understanding is that the law has changed to allow the deer to be eaten. The local food bank is accepting donations of venison (and is great need of it) and the landowner is allowed to keep it as well. So I’ll probably get one but haven’t done it yet.

      I’m definitely doing the swap tomorrow. So I’ll be offline for a few days.


      • Seems a very reasonable solution to the problem. Since we have eliminated all of the natural predators to deer, we are forced to assume the role. Local food banks as well as home consumption of venison are both excellent ideas. –Curt

        Liked by 1 person

  2. avwalters says:

    I see how “safety” regulations are choking small producers. I see how Big Ag is able to use its muscle to, first, shape regulations to their liking and, then, to sidestep them entirely when it suits them. Were it not for small farm communities, and a pervasive belief and practice, that it can be done better, I would give up entirely.


    • Bill says:

      I feel the same way. I’m keeping the faith, but it would be easy to conclude that it’s pointless to resist. Having said that, there are enough encouraging signs to keep me hopeful and optimistic.


  3. Joanna says:

    I am so pleased I have access to raw milk. I never realised how tasty it is, even when going sour it does not have the nastiness of pasteurised. Long may it continue


    • Bill says:

      I grew up drinking it. I would never have called it raw milk, because I didn’t think of the other kind as cooked. Now I know that raw whole milk is the healthy food nature intends, while pasteurized milk (especially the “low fat” varieties) is stripped of nutrients and taste–an imitation food really.


      • Joanna says:

        Pasteurisation had its place, but the reality is that it just makes it easier to be sloppy in production. It is harder to sell raw milk in the cities due to storage and handling. Getting milk to the people would be a huge challenge without the process, a trade off I guess.

        Liked by 1 person

    • nebraskadave says:

      I’ve been told that store bought processed milk purifies as it goes bad and raw milk sours which actually tends to be better for you when it does. I kind of think just the sound of the two words really tells the difference.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. EllaDee says:

    When I consider the food rights farmers and consumers have already lost to Big Business under the auspices of being for our own good a la milk, egg & meat regulations and restriction of trade and yet they peddle junk food that has contributed to deaths and health issues for far more people, makes me all the more determined that my own personal stand can make a difference.
    Unless we are successful, if that trend continues, it’s not a food future I wish to contemplate.


  5. Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

    I too drank fresh milk when I was a child, and agree with all here… They did manage to deliver from the Dairies, BEFORE dawn, not so very long ago and, while Pasteurisation is the law, and far from a normal form of milk, I’m still not sure that it’s actually the biggest problem; but indeed that the process of Homogenisation is a FAR worse culprit for the proper digestion and assimilation of milk…
    (Lol, good luck getting in to get your machine serviced; )


    • Bill says:

      I remember thinking it was a treat when I was growing up if we got store-bought milk because the cows had been eating wild onions. I didn’t have any understanding of pasteurization but I loved the fact that you didn’t have to blow the cream back while pouring the store milk. It was the homogenization that I liked. Now I know better of course.


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