I feel like you’re the type of person who makes conscious decisions about what you eat. Sure, you may indulge in the occasional creamy puff of whatever, or greasy nachos (ahem…girl’s gotta have a guilty pleasure). But for the most part, those of us who are deeply engaged with growing food for the masses, are fairly good eaters. You probably skip the fast food joints, opting instead for a salad-to-go from the local grocer. You may even frequent your local farmers’ market, gobbling up the freshest organic strawberries, as you know they’re one of the dirtiest fruits.
Eating clean and healthy just feels better, right?
We’ve all put a lot of effort into experimenting, creating, and developing efficient systems geared to growing the healthiest of foods, for the largest of cities. But I feel we’re missing a huge piece of the puzzle here: What about our livestock?
Why aren’t we applying the same reasoning for growing organic, vertically, hydroponically, to our animals? The same, limited space exists for livestock farmers as it exists for urban farmers. An organic pasture can only be chomped on for so long. The same carbon footprint is shadowing the costs of hauling grain to rural farms. And may I go as far to say piglets ail from the same bellyache as humans do, when consuming certain, non-organic grain?
So, can I ask again? Why aren’t we being as diligent in feeding our livestock the same, healthy goodness we crave for ourselves?
I speak as if no one is doing just that, but there are a few farmers, peppered across the U.S, “pampering” their livestock. I just wish people heard more about these radical farmers. For instance, did you catch the story about Simply Country, Northern California company feeding its livestock for a fraction of the cost? Read it here. Or get a behind-the-scenes tour into a hydroponic fodder system at Sunnyside Farms, right here.
>>>Side note: If you know of a savvy farmer growing greens hydroponically for his prized livestock, I want to hear about them. Drop us a line, would ya: firstname.lastname@example.org>>>
This is the point where I could create a never-ending list of benefits of growing fodder for our livestock. Instead of regurgitating what others have already said, allow me to point you in their direction (just come back here to leave us with your thoughts).
- Read specifically about the benefits of barley fodder, one of the more popular greens for animals, right here.
- See how easy it is to grow fodder with these step-by-step instructions here.
- Fodder Pro lists all the health benefits to specific animals such as cattle, equine, swine, goats, and more. Read all about it here.
- If you need to see numbers, read this article comparing the costs of grain versus the cost to grow your own.
- Would you know, I even can across a Pinterest board filled with awesome links for raising livestock on hydroponic systems?!?! Pin away, here.
I’m really curious to your thoughts. Care to share them? In the comments?