Joel Salatin takes on “Conventional Wisdom” and poor “journalism”

Joel Salatin of Polyface Farms posted a rebuttal to an article that appeared in the New York Times.The original article was titled “The Myth of Sustainable Meat”  – an article, that is itself pretty “mythological” It is just an example of poorly researched, “politically correct”  journalism. The article claims that, while Corporate Agribusiness is a disaster, small organic farms are not the answer.

Joel exposes the lack of journalistic integrity and inadequate research in this article and offers a reasoned defense of small scale sustainable agriculture.

 Joel submitted his rebuttal to the NY Times but they have yet to print it. No surprise there.

The author of the NY Times piece, of course, has his own book to sell (desparaging the Locavore movement) so I guess this is just the free market at work.

Still, I do think (and have often said) that in this age of “instant information” we all have an obligation to do “due diligence” in our research and in our thinking so that Truth can, ultimately, win out.

“Historically, omnivores were salvage operations.  Hogs ate spoiled milk, whey, acorns, chestnuts, spoiled fruit and a host of other farmstead products.  Ditto for chickens, who dined on kitchen scraps and garden refuse.  That today 50 percent of all the human edible food produced in the world goes into landfills or greenie-endorsed composting operations rather than through omnivores is both ecologically and morally reprehensible.  At Polyface, we’ve tried for many, many years to get kitchen scraps back from restaurants to feed our poultry, but the logistics are a nightmare.  The fact is that in America we have created a segregated food and farming system.  In the perfect world, Polyface would not sell eggs.  Instead, every kitchen, both domestic and commercial, would have enough chickens proximate to handle all the scraps.  This would eliminate the entire egg industry and current heavy grain feeding paradigm.  At Polyface, we only purport to be doing the best we can do as we struggle through a deviant, historically abnormal food and farming system.  We didn’t create what is and we may not solve it perfectly.  But we’re sure a lot farther toward real solutions than McWilliams can imagine.  And if society would move where we want to go, and the government regulators would let us move where we need to go, and the industry would not try to criminalize us as we try to go there, we’ll all be a whole lot better off and the earthworms will dance.” (Excerpt from Joel’s article.)


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