Tuesday, May 1, 2012

My (never has been) Humble Opinion

I have hit a nerve.
 I wasn't aiming at anyone in particular but someone in particular was highly offended.

The specifics are: I posted the following on Facebook a few days ago

 "Tired of tasteless, unethically raised supermarket pork ? Then now is the time to order      certified organic, South Pork Ranch meat, where the animals know what fresh air and sunshine feel like. "

A Facebook Friend (because it's our business page, so I'm friends with the whole world) took offense and responded:
 "unethically - really - maybe different, not better, not great, but unethically ?? lots of good farmers over my way who would take great offense"

Then I made one more comment suggesting he contact me so we could talk off-the -record but he didn't like that. To see the comments in their entirety go HERE. I was disappointed that Mr. T.P did not wish to communicate with me person to person, I really had some decent questions for him and I would've given him the chance to ask some of me.

What concerned me the most was his apparent feeling that I was calling all farmers, who didn't do things my way, "unethical" when I was instead calling particular methods of hog farming, such as the use of gestation crates, unethical, and I stand by that comment.

When my FB commenter also suggested I only talk about what is good about our products and not "disparage" others, I thought he made a decent point, and I gave it great thought. Perhaps I should only talk about what is wonderful at South Pork Ranch and forget the others who raise animals on concrete, in tiny cages, in areas so crowded it is impossible to turn around, in buildings that don't allow natural sunshine to invade, on feed with questionable origins.

But if we stay silent about the atrocities that are indeed occurring in the livestock raising world, if we avoid taking a stand because someone might be offended then how will consumers be able to make informed choices about what they eat? In this case being silent about bad farming practices benefits no one, except maybe the farmer with unethical practices.

And please, let me be clear, I do not think that a farmer who does things differently than we do here at South Pork is automatically unethical. (Believe me, of the 40 or so farmers we personally know who raise pastured hogs like we do...NONE of  them do it exactly like we do. Many of them do it BETTER) But I do believe that the majority of confinement hog practices are in themselves...unethical.

I stand by my Facebook comment  and I am open to discussion from either side on this blog.


  1. There's always going to be someone with their tail in a knot.

  2. Have been over to your FB page and back here again. Good for you Donna - stick to your very fine standards and opinions. Mr. Ted? Pffffft!

  3. One of the reasons I like you is that you speak the truth while still making me smile. Looks to me like Mr. Ted had his knickers in a twist...maybe his turkey bacon didn't agree with him. I've heard it can do strange things to a person...;)

  4. It makes me ILL how animals are unethically treated. Thank you for not being silent! and, Thank you for raising yours as you do! :)

  5. Say what you're going to say; don't leave parts out. You know why? Because no matter what you say, you're going to upset SOMEONE. And the more you edit yourself, the less interesting you become, IMO. When I write something and I'm trying to be "PC", I bore myself to death. Truly. Just let it out.

    Hell girl, stick to your guns. That's what makes you, you. So, be you!

  6. Good for you! What a coward if he wouldn't actually speak with you, only complain on fb. Say what you mean and mean what you say!

  7. Out standing in a field...standing your ground....stand by your man....way to go! You are doing the right thing and to heck with those that do not.

  8. Whatever about the ethics, poor husbandry is cruelty, simple as that. Well done for speaking out.

  9. You should absolutely stand by your comments. I agree with you 100% and you are doing a good job.

    The beauty part about FB is that if anyone has a problem with what you wrote, they can just...turn off the computer and walk away. Sometimes that's hard for people who get off on correcting and/or starting online arguments. It's always easier from the safety of a computer!!

    I'll send him a hammer and he can build a bridge and get over it.

    Big Agri-business hog farming is unethical - in all ways that it is done. Profits are the only consideration, not animal health, environmental concerns or consumer health.

    BTW - the pictures at the top of your post could have made your argument alone. Without text!

  10. We need people to talk about this! To educate the public on where their meat really comes from, and to force farmers to look for different options, instead of saying that its "too expensive" or "too difficult" to change. Unethical treatment of animals is the main reason we started raising our own, so we could be happy with the meat we eat.

  11. Ethics is knowing the difference between what you have a right to do and what is right to do.
    Potter Stewart

  12. Ethical or Unethical; it's all about doing things correctly. Respect for one's animals should always be a priority, whether they be pets or farm animals. All animals deserve to be treated compassionately; and that includes when they take their final trip to the abattoir.

  13. A lot of farmers will get uptight when you start questioning so-called progress, and CAFOs are considered progress while organic and free range is considered antiquated methods. What many of them have yet to realize that produce quality can be greatly improved by working with nature instead of trying to keep nature under our thumb. The amount of research conducted on organic ag is rapidly increasing and many farmers are using innovative technology to produce better yields and more nutritious food.

  14. I agree with you 100%! In little cages and on concrete are not natural... The amount of meds they have to put in to them to keep them alive should be the Proof in the Pudding... I am TRYING to pasture 2 little um well not so little pigs this year.. Stinkers are going where ever they darn well please and I am pretty sure Bar counts the ticking of the fence and runs through it when he thinks its safe.. To go BACK to the goat barn he Views as home the other one is a follower... Of Bar... Oh by the way their names are Bar and BQ.... ;)I went and liked your fb page!!

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