3 questions for your farmer
It's so easy to be confused by ‘beyond organic’ advertising claims! Making conscious eating choices is getting trickier with all the marketing greenwash these days. So what questions do we ask to determine whether an animal protein is actually ORGANIC, CLEAN & REGENERATIVE?
Well, if it’s certified organic / biodynamic then we can be assured that the farm’s practices are scrutinised & their inputs can be traced to source. Australian Standards that organic farmers follow go far deeper than whether glyphosate is sprayed on the farm. So this independent auditing is currently the only system that consumers can have faith in at a distance.
But if there’s no certification label in sight, there are a few simple questions we can ask our farmers.
Question 1: Is the animal’s food genuinely chemical free?
This is super important. You are what you eat, eat, eats! Non-organic grains are sprayed & stored with a suite of toxic chemicals. Animals who eat them bioaccumulate these poisons & pass them onto whatever eats them. So it’s a human health issue. AND a significant environmental health issue too... It is essential we question what system the farmer is supporting to know their real ethics. Are they supporting thousands of hectares of grain to be grown organically; enabling regeneration of soil, biodiversity, air & water health? Or are they purchasing their stockfeed from a chemical farming system that uses synthetic fertilisers, bioengineered seed and/or pesticides, herbicides & fungicides to kill unwanted life in the growing & storage of their grain?
Question 2: Did you raise this animal on your farm from day one without routine medications?
The provenance of livestock isn’t always what we’d like to imagine. (For example, in the case of non-organic pastured or free range laying hens, they are bought in from intensive farms when they are ~5 months old.) Were they vaccinated? Or given medications? (This can include less obvious medications like conventional non-organic chick crumble which contains antibiotics).
Question 3: Can I visit your farm?
Farmers doing the right thing are usually happy for folks to see! There are many animal welfare questions that can only be answered by actually seeing the livestock's living conditions, rather than by looking at carefully curated images created for marketing purposes. Ideally animals live their entire lives in environments that accommodate natural expression of their individual behaviours. For instance, chickens should be allowed to be chickens & given open range pasture in the sunshine, with access to fresh grass to forage for bugs & to dust bathe in.
MROF always have & always will operate to Australian Organic Standards as our bare minimum. Even though our organic feed costs are double. Even though we have to rear all our chicks for half a year before they lay eggs (quite a task)! Even though it would be all round easier, more convenient & more lucrative another way.
We choose to be organic because we believe in the bigger picture; a healthier whole. Healthier soils, healthier plants, healthier water, healthier air, healthier animals, healthier humans.
If you believe the same, please contact us to make an appointment to visit, see what we do & support your local ethical farmers by purchasing your animal proteins directly from us! Without you we just can’t do it.