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Know Your Seller

To avoid problems on your future homestead, follow this advice on how important it is to know your seller, whether you are buying plants or animals.

| February 2020

Farm_Day_080927-13
Goats at the Lazy B Farm in 2008

This is so important, and I can’t emphasize it enough. If you’re buying an animal, plant, or animal product, know the person you’re buying from. I’ve heard so many stories about friends and acquaintances who’ve purchased items from a person, not someone they necessarily knew already, only to add more problems to their own homestead.

For example: The purchased animal ended up having a sickness and spread it to other animals on the farm; the plants were infested with a disease, and it spread to other plants in the garden or in the greenhouse; the meat smelled kind of funny once taken out of the package; the milk tasted a little off; the veggies didn’t seem quite right …

It happens all the time in our eagerness to get a good deal. But if you know the seller, you can take your items back, or better yet, you can ask the correct questions up front before you purchase.



When I give tours at my farm, we talk about where our food comes from. There is a point where I speak directly to the adults; many are parents. I ask how many purchase milk from other farmers. A few hands go up. My next question is if they know the name of their farmer. Most nod yes. Then I ask: How many of you have seen the animals they’re milking?

How many have seen the barn or stall where the animal is milked? How many have seen the equipment they use to collect the milk? And I go on for a little bit, asking exactly how well they know the source from which they’re buying. Most just look at me with a blank stare, the wheels in their brain turning furiously, trying to catch up.





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