Footsteps Farm Today

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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Project 365 ducks

No time to post., last years muscovey ducks

Monday, March 30, 2009

Project 365

Blogger STILL taking too long to upload pictures

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Project 365

Blogger taking forever to load pictures, no time to wait

Project 365 processing layout

To busy to post, here was the layout for our processing area, note brooders in back

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Project 365 tractors

To busy to post, chicken tractors from last years construction

Friday, March 27, 2009

Project 365 insurance

To busy to post here is a bag of insurance for chicks

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Project 365 first chicks arrive

Someday I will learn how to get the pictures posted in order, but here ya go, this shows how they are shipped, how they are packed, chicks getting their first drink of water after the trip and home sweet home for the next 2 weeks or so.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Project 365 brooder cleaning

Wyatt has spent a lot of time getting the brooders ready for the start of our chick season. This picture was taken two years ago but I just wanted to show you what they look like.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Project 365 Girl friends

The two pregnant gals (actually all my sows are pregnant) get along real well together, may be it is because they are both about the same size.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Project 365 Nursery

With the newest pig (the berkshire) still being seperated from everyone else I decided to get another pregnant girl in there and fix the area for them both. The tamworth is due SOON>

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Good Reading from NY Times

Is a Food Revolution Now in Season?
Suzan Walsh/Associated Press
Alice Waters, the celebrity chef and an early advocate of local ingredients, at a farmers’ market in January. She and other food activists see the White House as an ally in Washington.

Published: March 21, 2009
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Room for Debate: Washington's Not-So-Secret Garden
Why are the Obamas the first in more than 60 years to put in a vegetable garden?
Join the Discussion »
Eating Food That’s Better for You, Organic or Not (March 22, 2009)
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Librado Romero/The New York Times
Marion Nestle, a nutritionist, has been calling for sweeping change in the food industry.
AS tens of thousands of people recently strolled among booths of the nation’s largest organic and natural foods show here, munching on fair-trade chocolate and sipping organic wine, a few dozen pioneers of the industry sneaked off to an out-of-the-way conference room.
Although unit sales of organic food have leveled off and even declined lately, versus a year earlier, the mood among those crowded into the conference room was upbeat as they awaited a private screening of a documentary called “Food Inc.” — a withering critique of agribusiness and industrially produced food.
They also gathered to relish their changing political fortunes, courtesy of the Obama administration.
“This has never been just about business,” said Gary Hirshberg, chief executive of Stonyfield Farm, the maker of organic yogurt. “We are here to change the world. We dreamt for decades of having this moment.”
After being largely ignored for years by Washington, advocates of organic and locally grown food have found a receptive ear in the White House, which has vowed to encourage a more nutritious and sustainable food supply.
The most vocal booster so far has been the first lady, Michelle Obama, who has emphasized the need for fresh, unprocessed, locally grown food and, last week, started work on a White House vegetable garden. More surprising, perhaps, are the pronouncements out of the Department of Agriculture, an agency with long and close ties to agribusiness.
In mid-February, Tom Vilsack, the new secretary of agriculture, took a jackhammer to a patch of pavement outside his headquarters to create his own organic “people’s garden.” Two weeks later, the Obama administration named Kathleen Merrigan, an assistant professor at Tufts University and a longtime champion of sustainable agriculture and healthy food, as Mr. Vilsack’s top deputy.
Mr. Hirshberg and other sustainable-food activists are hoping that such actions are precursors to major changes in the way the federal government oversees the nation’s food supply and farms, changes that could significantly bolster demand for fresh, local and organic products. Already, they have offered plenty of ambitious ideas.
For instance, the celebrity chef Alice Waters recommends that the federal government triple its budget for school lunches to provide youngsters with healthier food. And the author Michael Pollan has called on President Obama to pursue a “reform of the entire food system” by focusing on a Pollan priority: diversified, regional food networks.
Still, some activists worry that their dreams of a less-processed American diet may soon collide with the realities of Washington and the financial gloom over much of the country. Even the Bush administration, reviled by many food activists, came to Washington intent on reforming farm subsidies, only to be slapped down by Congress.
Mr. Pollan, who contributes to The New York Times Magazine, likens sustainable-food activists to the environmental movement in the 1970s. Though encouraged by the Obama administration’s positions, he worries that food activists may lack political savvy.
“The movement is not ready for prime time,” he says. “It’s not like we have an infrastructure with legislation ready to go.”
Even so, many activists say they are packing their bags and heading to Washington. They are bringing along a copy of “Food Inc.,” which includes attacks on the corn lobby and Monsanto, and intend to provide a private screening for Mr. Vilsack and Ms. Merrigan.
“We are so used to being outside the door,” says Walter Robb, co-president and chief operating officer of Whole Foods Market, the grocery chain that played a crucial role in making organic and natural food more mainstream. “We are in the door now.”
AT the heart of the sustainable-food movement is a belief that America has become efficient at producing cheap, abundant food that profits corporations and agribusiness, but is unhealthy and bad for the environment.
The federal government is culpable, the activists say, because it pays farmers billions in subsidies each year for growing grains and soybeans. A result is an abundance of corn and soybeans that provide cheap feed for livestock and inexpensive food ingredients like high-fructose corn syrup.
They argue that farm policy — and federal dollars — should instead encourage farmers to grow more diverse crops, reward conservation practices and promote local food networks that rely less on fossil fuels for such things as fertilizer and transportation.
Last year, mandatory spending on farm subsidies was $7.5 billion, compared with $15 million for programs for organic and local foods, according to the House Appropriations Committee.
But advocates of conventional agriculture argue that organic farming simply can’t provide enough food because the yields tend to be lower than those for crops grown with chemical fertilizer.
“We think there’s a place for organic, but don’t think we can feed ourselves and the world with organic,” says Rick Tolman, chief executive of the National Corn Growers Association. “It’s not as productive, more labor-intensive and tends to be more expensive.”
The ideas are hardly new. The farmland philosopher and author Wendell Berry has been making many of the same points for decades. What is new is that the sustainable-food movement has gained both commercial heft, with the rapid success of organic and natural foods in the last decade, and celebrity cachet, with a growing cast of chefs, authors and even celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Gwyneth Paltrow who champion the cause.
It has also been aided by more awareness of the obesity epidemic, particularly among children, and by concerns about food safety amid seemingly continual outbreaks of tainted supplies.
While their arguments haven’t gained much traction in Washington, sustainable-food activists and entrepreneurs have convinced more Americans to watch what they eat.
They have encouraged the growth of farmers’ markets and created such a demand for organic, natural and local products that they are now sold at many major grocers, including Wal-Mart.
“Increasingly, companies are looking to reduce the amount of additives,” says Ted Smyth, who retired earlier this year as senior vice president at H. J. Heinz, the food giant. “Consumers are looking for more authentic foods. This trend absolutely has percolated through into mainstream foods.”
While the idea of sustainable food is creeping into the mainstream, the epicenter of the movement remains the liberal stronghold of Berkeley, Calif.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Project 365 drilling and pounding

Today was the start of mushroom "Planting", we didn't get it all done but should be finished in one more day.
I drilled, Kevin pounded in the plugs and we will both wax when the plugs are all in.
Now I understand why some mushrooms cost so much.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Project 365 Feeders

The new pig feeders are here. This shows one unpacked and one packed. Already have one moved in to the pasture and I hope to get it all fenced in this weekend.



Thursday, March 19, 2009

You better read this

GROUND CONTROLLose your property for growing food?Big Brother legislation could mean prosecution, fines up to $1 million
Posted: March 16, 20098:56 pm Eastern
By Chelsea Schilling© 2009 WorldNetDaily
Some small farms and organic food growers could be placed under direct supervision of the federal government under new legislation making its way through Congress.
Food Safety Modernization Act
House Resolution 875, or the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2009, was introduced by Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., in February. DeLauro's husband, Stanley Greenburg, conducts research for Monsanto – the world's leading producer of herbicides and genetically engineered seed.
DeLauro's act has 39 co-sponsors and was referred to the House Agriculture Committee on Feb. 4. It calls for the creation of a Food Safety Administration to allow the government to regulate food production at all levels – and even mandates property seizure, fines of up to $1 million per offense and criminal prosecution for producers, manufacturers and distributors who fail to comply with regulations.
Michael Olson, host of the Food Chain radio show and author of "Metro Farm," told WND the government should focus on regulating food production in countries such as China and Mexico rather than burdening small and organic farmers in the U.S. with overreaching regulations.
"We need somebody to watch over us when we're eating food that comes from thousands and thousands of miles away. We need some help there," he said. "But when food comes from our neighbors or from farmers who we know, we don't need all of those rules. If your neighbor sells you something that is bad and you get sick, you are going to get your hands on that farmer, and that will be the end of it. It regulates itself."
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The legislation would establish the Food Safety Administration within the Department of Health and Human Services "to protect the public health by preventing food-borne illness, ensuring the safety of food, improving research on contaminants leading to food-borne illness, and improving security of food from intentional contamination, and for other purposes."
Federal regulators will be tasked with ensuring that food producers, processors and distributors – both large and small – prevent and minimize food safety hazards such as food-borne illnesses and contaminants such as bacteria, chemicals, natural toxins or manufactured toxicants, viruses, parasites, prions, physical hazards or other human pathogens.
Under the legislation's broad wording, slaughterhouses, seafood processing plants, establishments that process, store, hold or transport all categories of food products prior to delivery for retail sale, farms, ranches, orchards, vineyards, aquaculture facilities and confined animal-feeding operations would be subject to strict government regulation.
Government inspectors would be required to visit and examine food production facilities, including small farms, to ensure compliance. They would review food safety records and conduct surveillance of animals, plants, products or the environment.
"What the government will do is bring in industry experts to tell them how to manage all this stuff," Olson said. "It's industry that's telling government how to set these things up. What it always boils down to is who can afford to have the most influence over the government. It would be those companies that have sufficient economies of scale to be able to afford the influence – which is, of course, industrial agriculture."
Farms and food producers would be forced to submit copies of all records to federal inspectors upon request to determine whether food is contaminated, to ensure they are in compliance with food safety laws and to maintain government tracking records. Refusal to register, permit inspector access or testing of food or equipment would be prohibited.
"What is going to happen is that local agriculture will end up suffering through some onerous protocols designed for international agriculture that they simply don't need," Olson said. "Thus, it will be a way for industrial agriculture to manage local agriculture."
Under the act, every food producer must have a written food safety plan describing likely hazards and preventative controls they have implemented and must abide by "minimum standards related to fertilizer use, nutrients, hygiene, packaging, temperature controls, animal encroachment, and water."
"That opens a whole can of worms," Olson said. "I think that's where people are starting to freak out about losing organic agriculture. Who is going to decide what the minimum standards are for fertilization or anything else? The government is going to bring in big industry and say we are setting up these protocols, so what do you think we should do? Who is it going to bring in to ask? The government will bring in people who have economies of scale who have that kind of influence."
DeLauro's act calls for the Food Safety Administration to create a "national traceability system" to retrieve history, use and location of each food product through all stages of production, processing and distribution.
Olson believes the regulations could create unjustifiable financial hardships for small farmers and run them out of business.
"That is often the purpose of rules and regulations: to get rid of your competition," he said. "Only people who are very, very large can afford to comply. They can hire one person to do paperwork. There's a specialization of labor there, and when you are very small, you can't afford to do all of these things."
Olson said despite good intentions behind the legislation, this act could devastate small U.S. farms.
"Every time we pass a rule or a law or a regulation to make the world a better place, it seems like what we do is subsidize production offshore," he said. "We tell farmers they can no longer drive diesel tractors because they make bad smoke. Well, essentially what we're doing is giving China a subsidy to grow our crops for us, or Mexico or anyone else."
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Section 304 of the Food Safety Modernization Act establishes a group of "experts and stakeholders from Federal, State, and local food safety and health agencies, the food industry, consumer organizations, and academia" to make recommendations for improving food-borne illness surveillance.
According to the act, "Any person that commits an act that violates the food safety law … may be assessed a civil penalty by the Administrator of not more than $1,000,000 for each such act."
Each violation and each separate day the producer is in defiance of the law would be considered a separate offense and an additional penalty. The act suggests federal administrators consider the gravity of the violation, the degree of responsibility and the size and type of business when determining penalties.
Criminal sanctions may be imposed if contaminated food causes serious illness or death, and offenders may face fines and imprisonment of up to 10 years.
"It's just frightening what can happen with good intentions," Olson said. "It's probably the most radical notions on the face of this Earth, but local agriculture doesn't need government because it takes care of itself."
Food Safety and Tracking Improvement Act
Another "food safety" bill that has organic and small farmers worried is Senate Bill 425, or the Food Safety and Tracking Improvement Act, sponsored by Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio.
Brown's bill is backed by lobbyists for Monsanto, Archer Daniels Midland and Tyson. It was introduced in September and has been referred to the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee. Some say the legislation could also put small farmers out of business.
Like HR 875, the measure establishes a nationwide "traceability system" monitored by the Food and Drug Administration for all stages of manufacturing, processing, packaging and distribution of food. It would cost $40 million over three years.
"We must ensure that the federal government has the ability and authority to protect the public, given the global nature of the food supply," Brown said when he introduced the bill. He suggested the FDA and USDA have power to declare mandatory recalls.
The government would track food shipped in interstate commerce through a recordkeeping and audit system, a secure, online database or registered identification. Each farmer or producer would be required to maintain records regarding the purchase, sale and identification of their products.
A 13-member advisory committee of food safety and tracking technology experts, representatives of the food industry, consumer advocates and government officials would assist in implementing the traceability system.
The bill calls for the committee to establish a national database or registry operated by the Food and Drug Administration. It also proposes an electronic records database to identify sales of food and its ingredients "establishing that the food and its ingredients were grown, prepared, handled, manufactured, processed, distributed, shipped, warehoused, imported, and conveyed under conditions that ensure the safety of the food."
It states, "The records should include an electronic statement with the date of, and the names and addresses of all parties to, each prior sale, purchase, or trade, and any other information as appropriate."
If government inspectors find that a food item is not in compliance, they may force producers to cease distribution, recall the item or confiscate it.
"If the postal service can track a package from my office in Washington to my office in Cincinnati, we should be able to do the same for food products," Sen. Brown said in a Sept. 4, 2008, statement. "Families that are struggling with the high cost of groceries should not also have to worry about the safety of their food. This legislation gives the government the resources it needs to protect the public."
Recalls of contaminated food are usually voluntary; however, in his weekly radio address on March 15, President Obama announced he's forming a Food Safety Working Group to propose new laws and stop corruption of the nation's food.
The group will review, update and enforce food safety laws, which Obama said "have not been updated since they were written in the time of Teddy Roosevelt."
The president said outbreaks from contaminated foods, such as a recent salmonella outbreak among consumers of peanut products, have occurred more frequently in recent years due to outdated regulations, fewer inspectors, scaled back inspections and a lack of information sharing between government agencies.
"In the end, food safety is something I take seriously, not just as your president but as a parent," Obama said. "No parent should have to worry that their child is going to get sick from their lunch just as no family should have to worry that the medicines they buy will cause them harm."
The blogosphere is buzzing with comments on the legislation, including the following:
Obama and his cronies or his puppetmasters are trying to take total control – nationalize everything, disarm the populace, control food, etc. We are seeing the formation of a total police state.
Well ... that's not very " green " of Obama. What's his real agenda?
This is getting way out of hand! Isn't it enough the FDA already allows poisons in our foods?
If you're starving, no number of guns will enable you to stay free. That's the whole idea behind this legislation. He who controls the food really makes the rules.
The government is terrified of the tax loss. Imagine all the tax dollars lost if people actually grew their own vegetables! Imagine if people actually coordinated their efforts with family, friends and neighbors. People could be in no time eating for the price of their own effort. ... Oh the horror of it all! The last thing the government wants is for us to be self-sufficient.
They want to make you dependent upon government. I say no way! already the government is giving away taxes from my great great grandchildren and now they want to take away my food, my semi-auto rifles, my right to alternative holistic medicine? We need a revolution, sheeple! Wake up! They want fascism ... can you not see that?
The screening processes will make it very expensive for smaller farmers, where bigger agriculture corporations can foot the bill.
If anything it just increases accountability, which is arguably a good thing. It pretty much says they'll only confiscate your property if there are questions of contamination and you don't comply with their inspections. I think the severity of this has been blown out of proportion by a lot of conjecture.
Don't waste your time calling the criminals in D.C. and begging them to act like humans. This will end with a bloody revolt.
The more I examine this (on the surface) seemingly innocuous bill the more I hate it. It is a coward's ploy to push out of business small farms and farmers markets without actually making them illegal because many will choose not to operate due to the compliance issue.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Project 365 Long day

Well this day was a doosey, it started about 04:00 and ended after midnight. The inspector for the Certifed Humane Organization came aroung 5:30 for a yearly inspection and recertification, she didn't finish until 3:30 and we passed with flying colors. I have not heard yet from the Director but our exit meeting had ZERO negative comments. I am very proud of the whole farm family here for a job well done. Sheryl, Jeff, Kevin all have had a part in this program.

Around noon the USDA EQUP man stopped by to go over what they have decided they can do for us, we still have to be ranked but it is looking more positive all the time. A new well, water line and frost free hydrants to all our cleared pastures will be HUGE, no more worries about falling on the ice in the back of my truck in the winter.

I work at night part time and my boss is no longer with the company. Corporate has asked if I wanted the job, my response: no, they asked if I would help them get over the hump temporarly and I said yes so my hours at work will almost double for at least four months, right at the time of year when I need the most time at the farm.

So if I don't keep up with my postings, don't respond quickly to e-mails, don't return calls as fast as I should, please understand that I am a tad busy and could really use a office person and a hired hand on the farm but that isn't going to happen anytime soon.



Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Project 365 time of year

This is the time of year to spread lime but we won't be doing it this way this year, just does not fit into the budget. I will however be taking soil samples to send to The Fertrell Company to see what ALL or our pastures and paddocks need to benifit the pigs.



Monday, March 16, 2009

Project 365 getting ready

Spring is around the corner and today was the start of getting ready for our first delivery of broilers, pullets and turkey poults.
Pictured above is the feed I use for my layers, believing that chickens should have a choice I feed whole corn, flaked corn, cracked corn and layer pellets. I give free choice granite pebbles and oyster shells, the feed is topped off with a nice sprinking of flat seed. That is the brown stuff in the picture in the 3rd barrel.
This week all these girls will be going out on pasture and our brooders will be ready for the start of all the new babies 1760 of them to be exact.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Project 365 St Patty's dinner

Sunday was a great day. Pete came down and we had a huge air soft game, probably 35 players. Pete is headed for SC and we will all REALLY REALLY miss him, his is a intrical part of this family and like my own son (even though I LOVE shooting him). He won't be at YRD this year due to his starting a new job and new life, we wish him well.

Today was also Shane's birthday, Shane is in FL with his Mom and Dick. Working hard, and missing all the fun here in CT. Shane also won't be at YRD due to the economy this year. We all called him on Cody's cell and each person had some time to talk with him. We miss him SO MUCH but understand he is doing what is best for him and his.
With Shane and Pete not being at YRD 2009 we will tone it down for a year with plans to make 2010 a earth shaker, rock and roll blowout like has never been held before.
So three of my boys are gone now and missing in action, Jaime, Shane and Pete are loved and missed, at least I know two will return someday.
Thanks to Shawn my oldest for keeping me together.
Sheryl put on a huge corned beef and cabbage feed in the afternoon, she always gets the short end of the stick when we play airsoft. She stays in the house, cleans and cooks most of the day. Without her we couldn't play, wouldn't eat nearly as well and would never have much fun at a family get together here on the farm.
Thanks Sheryl for being the person you are and for sharing this life with me, you make it worth it.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Project 365 new pig

Here is the new pig, I should have her papers in a week or so. She does have a name but the guy I bought her from has so many pigs he didn't know her name but it is on her papers.
Trip home was the worst trip I have ever had, forgot my cell phone and got lost in Red Lion PA, Tomtom didn't even know where I was. Finally after going door to door out in the boonies I found the Innerst farm and picked up this pig.
As I crossed in to NJ on the way back I had 30 mile and hour maxiumum speed until north of New Haven...I was concerned about this little girl but she made it okay.
Now she is in my holding corral to get her used to the area, noises ect and I moved one of my Tams who is also pregnant in there with her so she would have company.
Moved some other pigs today, got Daisy in with the little Tam bora who was by himself when I moved the four gals out in to the woods. Now the little boar with no name needs a name as I think I will keep him around for a while. Also have the remaining 3 piglets in there with Daisy and the boar.
The berkshire is really cute and very docile, her previous owner has won many awards to the best tasting pork so hopefully she will produce so top quality piglets from this first litter and many more litters to come.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Project 365 traveling

I'm on the road today headed to PA

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Project 365 getting ready

Here is how I transport pig huts to the different paddocks.

We are just getting ready for the new pig which I pick up tomorrow in PA



Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Project 365 A walk in the woods

Sheryl and I went out for a nice walk the other day, we are so lucky to have each other and this land.
Wow, I had typed a whole lot more and then blogger failed but no time to retype now.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Project 365 Pigs in the woods

The pigs in the Umbrella tree lot are about ready to move and this picture is taken as I stand right next to the next fence line to go in. Headed to Home Depot today to get the 4 X 4's, and the plastic sheeting for the processing area.
Actually going to clean out my truck today as I have hired a friend to go to PA with me to pick up the new Berkshire bred gilt. I am afraid of falling asleep at the wheel with such a long trip. Be good to have someone to talk to.
Haven't had much time to get more stuff listed on Ebay but I need to get that done soon as once the weather turns our friend Dan is coming over to help finish the shingle job on the house. Dan is a crack carpenter and a good friend.

Monday, March 09, 2009

Bird flu oops

Now this is interesting. .----- Original Message -----From: rescueahorse@ comcast.netTo: adoptahorse ; equine freecycle network ; NewEnglandEquineRes cuesSent: Sunday, March 08, 2009 1:06 PMSubject: ALERT - Baxter Pharmaceuticals "Accident" contaminates vaccineswith Avian Flu (H5N1) combined with H3N2 - creating worldwide Pandemic AlertPlease read and take precautions.Mike and Chris DodgeFoundersH.O.R.S.E. Rescue & Sanctuaryhttp://www.hrsny. orgSubject: ALERT - Baxter Pharmaceuticals "Accident" contaminates vaccineswith Avian Flu (H5N1) combined with H3N2 - creating worldwide Pandemic AlertIt may be a good idea to avoid getting innoculated (human or animal) withany flu vaccines for awhile unless you can determine if the vaccine was madeby Baxter Pharmaceuticals.Apparently Baxter Pharmaceuticals has "accidentally" mixed live Avian Flu(H5N1 and H3N2) into some of their vaccines, which were then shipped tomedical distributors in 18 countries. This was "discovered" by Baxter onFebruary 6, 2009 but they don't say what steps they've taken to remedy thesituation, nor what countries are involved, nor which vaccine is involved.The problem is that combining these two (H5N1 and H3N2) results in the AvianFlu being easily assimilated into the human and animal bodies.Baxter Pharmaceuticals issued a press release but isn't talking about theincident - they are using the cover that it is "proprietary information. "Baxter says the infected vaccines were meant to be used on animals - nothumans.The World Health Organization and the European Centere for Disease Controlare reportedly watching the situation very closely (as reported in CanadianPress).Please read the Canadian Health article (quoted below) for the bestinformation about this which I've been able to find.Other aspects of the world press, based on what Baxter is willing to say,reports that 18 of Baxter's lab employees were seen and treated with TamiFlufor avian flu exposure, that the vaccine killed live ferrets (who weren'tsupposed to die), caused laboratories to be sanitized, and that the vaccinewas shipped to subcontractors in 4 countries: Austria, German, Slowenia,and the Czech Republic, who in turn may have shipped it to medicaldistributors in 18 countries (those countries as yet unnamed). This was alldiscovered in early February but Baxter still doesn't want to release newinformation on it.Canada Health reports that 36 or 37 people were exposed, and that Baxterbecame aware of the problem on February 6th when innoculated ferrets died atthe Czech facility.("Ferrets are susceptible to human flu strains, but they don't die fromthose infections. Preliminary investigation found the material wascontaminated with H5N1 flu virus, which is lethal to ferrets.")The World Health Organization is reportedly recommending that worldgovernments stock up on and use Baxter's H5N1 Avian Flu vaccine to protectagainst the Avian Flu pandemic which may be created by Baxter's accidentalrelease of this contaminated.Speculation abounds that Baxter's "inexplicable accidental release" mayresult in Baxter making huge profits from the sales of its H5N1 Avian FluVaccine around the world to protect against what Baxter themselves hassomehow unleashed.I found some confirming non-alarmist but highly questioning articles had the article (shown by Google) but has pulled it from itswebsite, yet the Bloomberg article is referred to extensively in otherarticles. Here's the Bloomberg article as reprinted from another site,which apparently is the Baxter International press release:Baxter International Inc. in Austria unintentionally contaminated sampleswith the bird flu virus that were used in laboratories in three neighboringcountries, raising concern about the potential spread of the deadly disease.The contamination was discovered when ferrets at a laboratory in the CzechRepublic died after being inoculated with vaccine made from the samplesearly this month. The material came from Deerfield, Illinois-based Baxter,which reported the incident to the Austrian Ministry of Health, SigridRosenberger, a ministry spokeswoman, said today in a telephone interview."This was infected with a bird flu virus," Rosenberger said. "There weresome people from the company who handled it."The material was intended for use in laboratories, and none of the labworkers have fallen ill. The incident is drawing scrutiny over the safety ofresearch using the H5N1 bird flu strain that's killed more than three-fifthsof the people known to have caught the bug worldwide. Some scientists saythe 1977 Russian flu, the most recent global outbreak, began when a virusescaped from a laboratory.The virus material was supposed to contain a seasonal flu virus and wascontaminated after "human error," said Christopher Bona, a spokesman forBaxter, in a telephone interview. (Michelle Fay Cortez and Jason Gale,Bloomberg)

Project 365 View one

So with this post and the one below you can get a panorama of the upper farm. I am doing this for the USDA to prove to them and UCONN too just what we can do with our pastures and pigs in the woods. If you start at the top of the frame the first picture is facing WNW and then go down through the pictures to the next post and the last picture is facing WSW.
I have others that I have taken of the hill pasture and the umbrella tree lot to show these idiots that pigs on wood lots are GREAT and should be helped under USDA BEFORE a problem comes up. I was always under the impression that Preventative Maintainence was better than "make a mess first and then we will clean it up". This is like saying let the terriorists hit first and THEN we will train homeland security.
But this is nothing new, over the years I have had a lot of stupid people tell me I can't do something only to have me do it and prove them wrong.
" You can't make a women a good air traffic controller"
You can't antique leather so as to make it pass as a original 18th century piece"
" You can't shoot this flinter accurately enough to hit a perfect 10"
" You can't shoot a flinter against a perciussion cap because you will loose"
"You can't get a pay phone installed at the Post Office"
" You can't paint the Post Office any color besides white"
" You can't clear all this land by yourself"
and the list goes on for many lines....all were proven wrong
Now we have
"you can't put pigs in the woods and call it pasture"

Project 365 View 2

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Project 365 new stainless

Thanks to Aime's Mom and Step Dad we now have new stainless tables in our processing area. Curt, Avery, Wyatt, Kevin and I moved them in to the area today. Tomorrow I hope to get some new covering for the walls that will was easy and stay cleaner.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Project 365 logs cut

I decided to order more spawn so I had to cut a few more logs, 40 in all. Now we wait for the drill to arrive.

Glad to see the snow gone

Friday, March 06, 2009

Project 365 Mushrooms

Here is the start of our mushroom project, We have a whole lot more to cut but we will start small at first and then grow from there. At the Farm Market I had been trying to get someone to sell mushrooms and could not find anyone so we decided to do it ourselves.
We will grow a number of different kinds, this start is Shiitake. But we will also put spore in our roadways that are covered with wood chips.
I have also been told that if you run a strip of chips around your pastures and put in the right kind of mushrooms they will actually eat any e-coil run off.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Project 365 USDA update

Have we had enough snow yet??

Re the Equp project, Tim came over (USDA Guy) and brought the letter from his boss. I had asked them: "This is to request a waiver from the normal definition of graze able pasture to include woodland for grazing pastured pigs."

The basic response was that because I have not had the pigs in there for two years they don't want to do it because there isn't a manure problem yet ie: in the USDA guys words "we want you to make a mess first so we can clean it up"

Now that sure is typical isn't it. They don't want to prevent a problem, they want to solve it. Of course with proper stocking and rotation there is no problem except to them.

At any rate the door is not closed and according to them if I get the wood lots cleaned, fenced and stocked in the next two years they will consider the project.

The rest of the land and project they will submit to "ranking", (they told me they had so much money that they would probably have to have two sets of deadlines this year) and if we qualify they will fence in our pond. drill a well, add a pump and run water lines to exsiting grazeable pastures.

I love it when people tell me I can't do something, puts me on a mission to prove them wrong.

So I will take many pictures from established locations around the farm once a month. Then I will have a photgrapic record of the change and progress.

Of course there is a lot more to this story but this is it in a nut shell.

Next thing is lard sales. I want to render down my leaf lard and fat back, put it in quart containers and sell it.

Got the church (approved kitchen) to allow me to use the kitchen

Called Stonington Health; Nope you have to contact Consumer protection

Called CP: nope you have to call USDA

Called USDA: nope you have to call "food"

Called "Food": nope you need to call John

Called John: Ah HA....explained that my lard is packed by a USDA plant in USDA labeled containers, I want to take them out of the containers and render it down, put it in quart containers and resell it...Nope: I could do it IF I had an approved kitchen at my farm, otherwise it must be done under USDA inspection....

I have asked Westerly packing if they can do this for me.

Don't ya love the USDA



Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Project 365 dogs and snow

The dogs say they have had enough of the cold and snow.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Project 365 whats left

Top picture is the little boar who is now by himself because we moved all the girls into the Umbrella Tree lot. When I first went to feed him I couldn't see him as he was completly buried under the straw.
The bottom picture is of one of the burn piles from Sunday. Only five more piles to burn in teh 4 acre lot and then that lot is done. I will be dividing it by 1/3rd and then the 1/3rd by 3'rds so that lot will have 4 paddocks. One huge one for the chicken tractors and cows and 3 small ones for rotational grazing of the pigs.

Project 365 the big storm

Nice storm, I think we got about 10 inches. Top photo is how I have to haul feed to my pigs in the snow, pain in the ass it is. If we get this EQUP project they will fix my roads so I can buy a Hopper cart to go to all the paddocks and feed the critters.
Second picture is the Ladies out in the umbrella tree lot. They have gone through about 500 pounds of feed and I have to fill it once more before they move.
Ordered the new feeders today from Smidley (Marting MFG)

Monday, March 02, 2009

Project 365 three years ago

Here is a picture from 3 years ago as Elizabeth and I come back from working on the Cemetary area. What is important is to notice the woods and brush behind me, this is the 4 acre lot. The top picture is from the same year, Newt is in the 5 acre lot clearing brush...sooooooo USDA dudes see what can be done with the right animals, woods CAN be pasture

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Project 365 Burning brush

Spent most of sunday buring brush piles and got three about done before the big snow storm hit.