Just because the package says “local,” doesn't guarantee that it is.
Small-scale local meat producers are teaming up with mobile slaughterhouses to make local meat more sustainable, accessible and affordable
"The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver" by Karen Patry will answer your questions about rabbit housing, feeding, behavior, health care, breeding and kindling.
How to tell when meat or poultry is "off"
We offer you some helpful tips on how to have a green holiday this year.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence pledges to go 'Meatless in May' to raise awareness about the environmental effects of consuming meat.
Veggie meatloaf makes for a hearty, delicious entree or side dish perfect for vegetarians and vegans at Thanksgiving. Check out these three varieties: one features chickpeas, one lentils and one vegetarian meat substitute.
As we look into the future we prepare for a flatter terrain for a new homestead.
We would like all our food to be grown locally, but when it's too cold to grow outside, we often rely on what we've stored from the previous season. Calzones offer one more way to cook with stored food.
To ensure you have quality fat in the kitchen from pastured animals, learn how to render beef tallow at home. I’ve rendered beef fat into quart jars of tallow two years in a row and consider myself seasoned in the art of avoiding too much of a mess in making it. The fat lends a flavor to dishes that is particularly desirable for Mexican foods, fried potatoes and savory pie crusts. This fat keeps for three months in a refrigerator.
A few months back I heard a comment on an NPR radio program that really caught my attention. The program was about the local food movement and at one point the guest on the show said, “Now remember - just because it’s local doesn’t necessarily mean it has a smaller carbon footprint. That Argentinian apple that was shipped on a barge with thousands of tons of other apples may actually have required less fuel per apple than the apple than came from a few hundred miles away in the back on a farmer’s pickup.”
My top 10 links to delicious quick cured meats, fresh cheeses and pickles for your next summer picnic.
D Acres offers alternative economics. We are the 99&: join us.
How does one eat more of the right types of seafood to reap all the health benefits without going bald? Choose local!
Steve Judge of Bob-White Systems in Vermont offers his Micro Dairy expertise in this blog series on how to start and manage a Micro Dairy, from farm and barn planning to selecting dairy cows, goats and sheep to daily operations and being profitable.
Taking into account production, processing, consumption and disposal, the Environmental Working Group found that if everyone in the U.S. gave up meat or cheese one day a week for a year, it would be equivalent to taking 7.6 million cars off the road.
The US Department of Agriculture really, really doesn’t want us to read this report, which proves the connection between factory meat and MRSA, the antibiotic-resistant staph bacteria that now kills more people each year than AIDS.
The USDA kicks off its Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food initiative.
Why locally-raised clean meat costs more than feed-lot meat; the role large USDA-inspected meat processing facilities play in the food chain. Plus a bad joke.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explains the environmental effect of consuming too much meat and offers tips on how to incorporate more vegetarian meals into your diet.
Recipes and ideas for meals with less meat.
Cole describes some not-so-honest butcher practices involving meat loaf mix. Buyer Beware!
Delicious, nutritious quinoa gives nutty goodness to this summer dish that takes advantage of tomatoes, corn and eggplants--summer vegetables at their best.
Perfect for spring, this pasta dish can be made with the spring herbs that are popping up in your garden or market and a little leftover wine (either red or white will do).
When you celebrate Meatless Monday with hearty, savory Mushroom Bread Pudding, no one will miss the meat.
A new guide-to-meat book.
Cole discusses the challenges faced by organic meat raisers, as well as the health benefits of consuming organic meats.
Advice on how to get the most tender and flavorful meat from your chickens.
Rabbit is delicious and extremely good for you.
The community of Penobscot, Maine, has declared their local food sovereigny in a move to bypass restrictive state and federal regulations.
Choosing to purchase goods and services from local vendors impacts your local economy twice as much as purchasing from corporate suppliers. Here are seven local services you can remember to purchase from more often.
Tender slices of grass-fed flank steak have an out-of-this-world flavor, which is perfectly complimented by this flank steak marinade featuring mirin and maple syrup.
Cornish cross and heritage chickens are two types of chickens often used for meat. There’s considerable debate about which tastes better, which is easier to raise and which is more “ethical.”
Instructions for building a cold smoker (and three other things you can do with steel oil drums).
The Gourmet Butcher explains the best ways to re-heat red meats.
It's a challenge to describe the place where I take my livestock when it's time for them to cease being my companions, and to become my product instead. I call Steve's Meats in DeSoto, Kansas, the "packer." And, indeed, when I stopped off there this morning they had about 800 pounds of beef frozen and packed, ready for me to take home. It filled the freezer to the rim.
Here's how you can find local breweries and wineries in your area.
"Local" is always the best answer, even when it comes to fruit trees.
A comforting herb-baked macaroni makes for a simple meal on a short winter night.
Going meatless is a breeze when corn is at its late-summer best and the garden is bursting with squashes. Southwestern calabacitas is a delicious, hearty summer stew that makes the most of this bountiful season.
This Meatless Monday, whip up a batch of Julia Butterfly Hill's Top Anything Sauce, made with peanut or almond butter, and make a meal out of fresh veggies and quinoa.
Creamy, delicious Parsnip Flan with Roasted Beets takes advantage of the last of the stored winter vegetables. Pair it with fresh spring greens for a wonderful spring meal.
There is no “one size fits all” bunch of information that works every time in every location, every person, and for every goat.
Pigs can be a great source of healthy and humanely-raised meat in an urban setting thriving on the leftovers of humanity.
Butcher and meat expert Cole Ward gives a simple explanation of what "meat" actually is.
A brief description of what happens after slaughter.
If you’ve always wondered how to make sausage at home, this primer will get you started in sausage making.
How do folks get from city dwellers to homesteaders? Annie Warmke interviews Carie Starr, owner of Cherokee Valley Bison Ranch in Central Ohio.
Composting doesn't need to be complicated. It's time to throw out the guide book and start letting nature take its course. Meat? No problem. Bread? Don't worry about it. Human waste? Why not? It's easy!
Cole's tips for the best stew meat, and his favorite burger recipe. Plus a chance to win a free Gourmet Butcher DVD!
One of the secrets of healthy dogs is to feed them healthy food, and raw meat is their natural diet.
My journey and some of the challenges I experienced with the farm-to-table method. The struggles I faced while raising meat in order to eat more ethically and sustainably.
Cole remembers some of the not-so-great things he saw in supermarket meat departments.
Check out these great searchable databases and other resources for finding local food and farmers.
A list of ways we could each show support or teach our friends and family to support the Local Foods Movement
When Rachel Zegerius, camp program manager, set out to overhaul the food purchasing system at our small camp in Southwest Michigan five growing seasons ago, I began building relationships with the local farming community from the soil up.
Beyond the global, environmental and social impacts of eating local, feeding your organs healthy fuel buys you precious time on earth.
Cam gives an update on his new chickens!
New businesses are springing up catering to folks who want their food homegrown, but without the mess of tending to the garden themselves.
Readers suggest local food products and local food producers to our community.
The United States imports more than $2.2 trillion worth of products from 150 countries every year. That's just crazy, given all the benefits that buying locally can bring to both consumers and communities.
are at the vanguard of thoughtful sourcing, choosing local, sustainable farms
and cooking seasonally.
Recipe for Southern-style shrimp and grits, made with superb Floriani Red Flint grain corn.
How we prepared and ate all the meat of the goat Caleb raised and butchered.
Rich, creamy Parmesan and Brie Polenta is a Meatless Monday meal fit for a king.
Chef Gordon Hamersley's Vegetable Tian makes use of tomatoes, squash and eggplant--all in their prime right now.
This fresh spring soup is rich and creamy without the heaviness of cream.
If fiddlehead ferns are popping up in your local market or local woods, grab them while you can. Incorporate this fabulous, fleeting spring treat into a fresh, slightly tangy pasta dish for Meatless Monday.
Ann Harvey Yonkers, founder of Washington, D.C.'s FreshFarm Markets co-op, nests eggs in a bed of wilted fresh greens for a delicious meatless summertime brunch or dinner.
These recipes with filling, protein-packed whole grains such as quinoa and millet are great options for no-meat or low-meat diets.
Readers share their best ideas for saving money on meat and their recipes for almost meatless, flexitarian meals.
Whip up this delicious vegetable-based soup tonight. You'll never miss the chicken.
If spring is giving you peas, it's best to eat them right away before their sugars degrade. Here's how to whip them up into a wonderful spring soup.
Fired up our smoker for the first time and made yummy use of our summer's Kokanee Fish Catch to smoke fish.
Preserving meat at home by making pork confit.
Cole explains the term "dark cutter" as it applies to the effect of stress on meat animals, and eventually, its affect on consumers.
Cole takes you through the first steps in learning to cut your own meat - sourcing.
Meat, eggs and dairy from grass-fed animals provide superior nutrition. Join our nutrition testing program for proof you can use.
Spring tasks around the homestead.
In praise of the garden fork.
FamilyFarmed.org Good Food Festival & Conference partner Vicki Nowicki shares her experience living, learning, and teaching on her suburban permaculture homestead.
One thing that gardening has done to me, as to so many others probably, is that I've started to pay attention to where the food on my plate comes from, and usually the answer is “from our garden."
What would you do if the trucks stopped coming to the grocery stores? Find out how a community college class project spurred students to make plans for just such an experience.
Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will discuss how to enjoy a little taste of summer in the middle of winter by developing a new appreciation for honey!
Cheap imported goods do not stand the test of time compared to locally crafted goods.
The adventure in the water, on the water or on dry land does stop with the ecotravel activities in the Florida Keys, many of which help preserve and conserve the very things we came to see. Some of the lodging options – and restaurants or food options – are an adventure in and of themselves.
As important as it is to improve life locally, such efforts will not work their way up through the world's economy to solve our biggest problems.
Pennsylvania is under federal quarantine due to the threat of Emerald Ash Borers. Raising awareness and getting the facts are important. However, getting to the root of the problem may be as simple as supporting local food systems.
Swine flu may or may not be the pandemic that cable newscasters are proclaiming - but why take chances? This most recent health scare is yet another reminder that eating local, organic food - preferably raised by a source you know and trust - is just a smart thing to do.
Cam discovers that his chickens have unique personalities....
Look for local foods, such as fresh peaches, from your local farmers' market to make delightful summer desserts such as peaches and cream.
Guest blogger and longtime advocate of sustainable food Gwen Roland reflects on the new popularity of local eating, and highlights some of the innovative local food projects funded by Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) grants.
In our ever-growing quest to produce our own food we've acquired two egg-laying chickens!
New Roots for Refugees, a program in the Kansas City area, helps fleeing refugees establish a new home and contributes to the local food system.
Readers share tips and stories about wild food foraging.
This is a must see film about the poverty America’s migrant farm workers faced 55 years ago. Although many of these scenes are far from pretty it can be used to inspire and motivate people to support their local and sustainable farms.
Paul Fehribach sees history in food, cooking methods and recipes and he’s planning a Chicago restaurant that will source 100 percent locally and champion the historic foods and recipes of the Great Lakes region.
The further degradation of our societal food skills are examined here, with small town food craftsmen becoming an endangered species, in this case, my local butcher.
Building a vibrant local community through local economics and rural culture.
In more shocking news about the honey on U.S. store shelves, a Food Safety News study analyzes more than 60 jars of honey and finds that nearly all of them have been ultra-filtered to disguise their potentially tainted and toxic origins.
Happy Halloween! Now pop open a pumpkin beer.
As farmers markets open across the country, here are 10 good reasons to get out and support your local farmers. (The freshest seasonal food is just a part of it.)
Reasons why we like to shop at our local grocery.
“The Cleaner Plate Club” co-author Beth Bader shares an adventure to the farmers market with her daughter, her “eat local” food values, and her recipe for Lemongrass Tomato Soup.
Although the concepts of fair trade, buying local and buying organic food are used to aid the economies of developing countries, these same three concepts can help our local communities become the healthy communities we can thrive in.
Skip the steaks if you're firing up the barbecue tonight. Marinated and grilled veggies and tofu, served up with wasabi mayo on grilled bread, is a hearty, delicious way to celebrate Meatless Monday.
Celebrate Meatless Monday with this sweet, tangy spring risotto.
Sauteed spring greens and mushrooms dress up polenta in this nutritious, satisfying main dish.
As I go along, I pull out pebbles occasionally, but only one large stone. Time and time again, however, my hands pry free the remnants of bricks. As late afternoon turns to early evening and my work for the day is nearing completion, a collection of the ruddy-colored artifacts is stacked to one side. The sight of them calls up something nostalgic in me, broken bits suggesting a history that is largely lost.
These online tools can help you find the best sources for local food, including local farmers markets and community-supported agriculture programs.
This Cherry Crostata Recipe is a simple, delicious way to use summer’s rubies.
Two Ogden Publications employees turned beekeeping beginners seperate the honey from the comb in the MOTHER EARTH NEWS parking lot. Thier backyard hives are only four miles away for making sweet, local honey.
McCormick pumps up flavor and encourages healthy changes.
A new open-source website helps consumers track where their products come from.
Celebrate harvest season by helping bring local food onto kid's lunch trays at schools across the country during Farm to School Month.
The Roots and Culture Tour is an incredible opportunity for all those interested in working towards a more sustainable and just food system to dive into the local food system in the small and amazing Talamanca Region of Costa Rica.
The creators of Food Inc. make a great effort to teach their audience about where our food comes from and about the effects of our industrial food system. After seeing the documentary, MOTHER EARTH NEWS blogger Jenna Woginrich was inspired to write her own argument about the way we view and consume food - and ask: Will those who most need the education ever see the film?
Cities, counties and states across the country have created food policy councils in response to their concerns about future food security in their communities. The councils work to coordinate local food efforts, such as farmers markets, to develop a sustainable food system.
Pass the cold, wintry months with warm thoughts of how you can eat more local food while supporting sustainable agriculture this coming season.
The benefits of a membership in a CSA and how supporting local organic farming is not only good for you but good for the Earth as well.
Could you eat only food grown within 100 miles of your home for 10 days?
Learn more about this challenge and why you should consider taking it on.
The options for obtaining locally grown food have expanded in recent years, particularly with farmers markets. Expand your diet beyond your garden and meet the folks who can help you do that and stay local.
Restaurants in the United Kingdom can be evaluated and accredited based on choices such as purchasing ethical meat and dairy products, choosing fair trade coffee, monitoring energy use, supporting community charities and serving tap water.
Community food events are an outstanding way to share the abundance of our harvest and strengthen local community ties.
Support America's artisan cider makers by putting locally made sweet and hard apple cider on the Thanksgiving table this year.
One locavore takes responsibility for raising and slaughtering her own chickens.
Keeping feeder pigs over the summer is a good way to use garden leftovers and produce great tasting home-grown pork!
Cole Ward - AKA The Gourmet Butcher - introduces himself
Hog butchering was a common farm chore done in the early winter. It provided much of the family's meat in the wintertime. It provides healthful food, exercise and a wonderful experience of community.
The tale of Carlotta's last day. A trip to the processor. Real happenings on a goat farm, it's not always lollipops and rainbows.
Getting ready for Goat School is always a daunting task, but once all of our new friends start arriving, we get excited! What a great time learning all about goats!
I don't get grossed out very easy - but this special cut of beef made me cringe!
Julia Butterfly Hill understands the need for extreme measures when it comes to environmental activism. In the late 1990s, she spent 738 days living in a redwood tree named Luna, to bring attention to the plight of the world’s ancient forests. Through her vigil, she negotiated to permanently protect the 1,000 year-old tree and a nearly three- acre buffer zone. She says that our forks are also powerful change agents.
“I love food!” Hill told Natural Home & Garden. “I love preparing meals that are both decadently delicious and happily healthy. I’m a joyous vegan, and I celebrate how fabulous this lifestyle is for my body, my world, my planet, and for the animals as well.”
Hill eats animal-free food that’s organic, local, in season, and free of added junk—food that she calls “a celebration of life.” Her recipe for delicious vegan lasagna takes about a half hour to prepare and provides plenty of opportunity for interpretation. If you don’t have fresh herbs on hand, substitute 1 teaspoon each of the dried herbs or 2 tablespoons Italian Seasoning.
Make homegrown tomatoes the star of tonight’s dinner by whipping up Marcella Hazan’s Tomato Sauce with Butter and Onion. Made with just three ingredients, this sweet, rich sauce is a classic.
Fusion Bread Salad makes use of the cherry tomatoes and basil that are prime right now--and you don't have to heat up the kitchen to make this hearty, nutritious main dish.
No one will miss the meat when you serve up fabulous vegetarian versions of Thanksgiving favorites. Try two versions of mushroom stuffing, mushroom gravy or delicious roasted Brussels sprouts this holiday!
A story of life, death and rebirth of a hoop house.
Wendy Albright remembers visiting her grandparent's farm where practicing organic living was the preferred way of life; they exercised natural crop cultivation, gathered fresh chicken eggs, canned both vegetables and meat and the term "eating like a thrasher" became a reality.
describing the upcoming fun photo contest with the theme being chickens and the fun they either have or give. Figs and more figs are at the heart of the obsession.
Tackling the old wives tale I heard recently down at the hardware store how a penny inserted into the flesh of a tomato plant stalk will help that plant fight off or maybe prevent a blight attack along with data on trying to trap a wild rabbit.
Vermont farmer Walter Jeffries details all the cuts of meat on a pig, as well as many other uses of the animal, from working the soil to providing delicious lard for baked goods.
Completing tasks in preparation for a few days away from the homestead
With the U.S. importing 91 percent of its food, many crucial details of what we're consuming can be hard to trace: how our seafood is caught or produced, health codes across borders, and how the ecosystems are being affected. But does that matter?
The documentary Urban Roots takes a look at how city farming is transforming the city's vacant lots into community gardens, ultimately changing the community as a whole in the process.
A cheap plastic pin reveals allies on Capitol Hill.
A beginner farmer learns about taking on the responsibility of raising animals.
This Thanksgiving consider opting for a pastured turkey instead of a commercially raised bird, and think about buying local Thanksgiving foods, too.
A nine-to-fiver turns a corner and leaves behind a twenty-year career to grow food amongst housing developments and strip malls.
A beginning urban farmer grows nothing without a smartphone.
Geoff Taylor remembers a quality discussion with his cat, in which the amazing benefits of owning free-range chickens are the primary topic.
Sandy Boyce's sauerkraut was a hit, selling out each week, until her county health department asked her to stop. Across the nation, regulations can prevent small-time home producers from distributing their 'cottage foods' to the public.
Since getting the homestead functional, we have focused on food - local producers, access to food and ways to educate and communicate. This blog describes a couple of my useful and favorite organizations, Slow Food and the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance.
A brief story of how a creek was damaged and how it was reported to the authorities properly.
Labels on commercial foods are difficult to decipher and misleading. For healthful food, healthy bodies, healthy communities and planet, we need to grow and purchase our food locally.
Both organic and local food are important if we want to eat nutritious and delicious food. Furthermore, our current food system is in jeapordy because petroleum and water supplies are dwindling and climate change is resulting in more extreme weather.
For calendar year 2015 brothers Edmund and Garth Brown are eating only food that they have produced on their farm or bartered for from a neighbor. To do this successfully they must raise and butcher their own meat, hunt, forage, and cultivate a large vegetable garden.
Summing up pasture data where it relates to chickens and customizing land to better suit poultry and their behavior and stomachs. Measuring oil viscosity levels and rescuing a trailer with a portable winch were some of our favorite things.
The New York Times reports our carbon emissions in 2011 were the highest on record. Reduce your family's carbon footprint by choosing vegetarian recipes such as Fennel and Leek Soup and Delicata Squash Stuffed with Wild Mushrooms and Herbs.
Urban food forests and public gardens provide communities with an edible landscape for everyone to share. These public fruit forests are the new trend in urban agriculture and play an important role as sustainable local food systems in their communities.
Knowing where lumber sawyers exist locally opens the door to all kinds of DIY projects. For example, storm-damaged trees can be turned into useable lumber instead of heading to a chipper or landfill. But you can take advantage of milling lumber at local sawmills only if you know where to find them. There are online resources to help you find a sawmill near you. Search by state or Zip code using the sawmill locators below and you will be on your way to turning raw wood into quality-cut lumber for DIY projects without the need to purchase any equipment yourself.
What does it take to build truly sustainable houses – the kind people really want and can afford? If you build small and use natural building materials, then most likely you’ll be able to build your own home in a reasonable amount of time for cash.
A travel log of our family's mission to find local food sources on our trip to Puerto Rico.
Check out these tips and share your ideas for welcoming 2010 with a green New Year’s Eve party.
Black bears and rural living go hand in hand in many parts of North America. So how do you keep bear/human conflicts to a minimum?
Homegrown vegetables are a lesson for kids in where food comes from.
A list of links to orgs, associations, websites, books, and other resources related to local economies, community resilience, green business, corporate social responsibility, green jobs, environmental and social entrepreneurship, and investment.
Growing Local Food is a new book that encompasses all the needed basics to grow plants, keep heritage breed animals and bees. The author is a homesteader and physician who gives the readers the basic information to grow or find nutritious, local food
Simran Sethi enjoys the fruits of late summer at a local farm dinner.
Simran Sethi looks back at her New Year's resolution: to nourish herself.