The Blomme'n Coop

Our Farm = Your Food

Month: July 2015

Growing Days of Summer

This has been another busy week with lots of fun things going on at the farm. One of my favorite things to do this time of year is hop on the “Ranger” with my husband and girls and check cows.  Check out my photos of our cows on pasture, a new load of baby piglets that just arrived and our second cutting of hay.  This is an inside look at where your meat comes from!

These girls love all that green grass in the summertime.  They have lots of shade available to them to keep them cool on these hot summer days.

These girls love green grass in the summertime. They have lots of shade available to them to keep them cool on these hot summer days. One of the biggest challenges this time of year is keeping flies under control . . . they are a real nuisance to cattle.

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We were fortunate to have great hay-making weather this week. The hay bales we’re making right now will be fed to our cows this coming winter when they’re not able to be on pasture.

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We received the first of two loads of piglets yesterday. These piglets were just weaned and weigh an average of 12.7 pounds. Before the piglets arrive, our barn is power-washed and disinfected to give the piglets the healthiest start possible. We will raise them in our hog barn until they reach market weight this winter. At that point, they will be loaded out and harvested.

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How cute are these little guys?! One of the first tasks when receiving piglets is to get them properly sorted. The smallest piglets are sorted off and put together in a pen so that they don’t have to compete for food with the large piglets. Every pen has a heat lamp to keep them warm . . . even in the heat of summer they still need extra heat until they get bigger.

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This little guy is anxious to get off the trailer and explore his new home.

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Sometimes, you just need a quick power nap!

Sustainable, Responsible and Down Right Green

IMG_2783One of the biggest buzz words in the media right now is “sustainability.” I often read articles or hear talk show hosts talk about “sustainable” or “responsible” food production. It implies that today’s modern farmer is not using sustainable or responsible practices.

I, for one, am 100% behind sustainable farming. Farmers are the originators of sustainability. It’s very simple; the land is our livelihood. Most farmers’ lifetime goal is to pass the family farm down to the next generation. Farmers have been carrying on for centuries through droughts, floods, devastating disease and all the while learning from the previous generation and making improvements to leave the land better than they found it.

My husband and I are lucky enough to be a part of a farm that’s been in our family since 1935. What I want people to understand is that we see our family’s farm as a true gift; a gift that comes with a lot of responsibility. Of course we want to be profitable because that’s how we survive. But more than anything, we want to take care of our land and livestock so our children can continue the legacy if they so choose.

Today’s farmers are taking better care of the land than ever before. They’re using less chemicals and fertilizers and more conservation practices while getting greater production out of less land. This is because we have access to information that helps us make “sustainable” decisions. It’s not possible to raise crops profitably if we don’t take proper care of the land.

On our farm for example, we currently use conservation practices such as grass seeded waterways, filter strips, tile, buffer strips, terraces, crop rotation, cover crops and no-till practices all for the purpose of minimizing erosion and run-off. All of these things require great effort and money. But it’s important that we implement them in order to preserve the land.

Farmers were “green” long before the term ever became cool. Using manure from livestock to fertilize crops is as green as it gets, people.IMG_2788

There is a whole business sector, particularly in urban areas, whose marketing strategies are focused on “responsibly raised products,” and “sustainable products.” I have to wonder, when was the last time that consumers at these stores actually visited a farm and saw for their own eyes how food is raised instead of just believing everything the media tells them? The practices we use in our fields are far more sustainable than the fertilizer that gets dumped on lawns and golf courses all across America, I assure you.

Farmers are the leaders of sustainable food production. At the end of the day, we all want the same thing – safe, healthy food.

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