Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Grass Fed, Free Range, and Kind of Local

We have all heard it thanks to Michael Pollan, eat local, grass fed and free range if possible. I read Omnivore's Dilemma last year and although I didn't agree with everything Mr. Pollan presents it was thought provoking to the point I have made many changes in my food purchasing habits. Recently my good friend (let's just call her my BFF, she hates that!) watched Food Inc. a movie I haven't seen but it motivated her to find out where we could purchase animal products that we felt good about eating.

We live in a rural town with many neighbors who raise beef and pork but ironically there was nothing really "local" that was not grain fed and slaughtered in the traditional way. After a quick internet search we traveled 1 hour (just for the record it takes me 1 hour to drive to a Target too!) to Evanston, Wyoming to the home of Lyle and Jana Williams and Running Water Farms. What a surprising and unique food shopping experience it was. The Williams offer grass fed Red Angus Beef, free range chicken and eggs, as well as pastured poultry and pork. We easily found the farm, right next to Wyoming Downs Racetrack and were warmly invited into their home. We had many questions which were all answered and we then took a walk around the farm to see the animals. Lyle even brought out this little guy from the barn.

I can't explain the excitement in my family about ordering our beef which will be ready in the Fall. It feels as though we are really making changes and supporting these local farmers is exciting to us! Yes, we homeschool and are a little weird and yes, it doesn't take much to excite me about food. For the last two years we have purchased a local 4H animal and I like knowing my freezer is stocked with a year's worth of meat plus it makes grocery shopping so much easier. If you don't have a source for local meat, dairy and eggs do some research and see what you can find. It may be more doable than you think, and if you live anywhere near Evanston, Wyoming check out Running Water Farms, you won't be disappointed.

The Williams also have a fun blog with lots of pictures of the farm and animals, check it out here. Thanks again Lyle and Jana for your hospitality!


  1. I like your new look. I know how it is to get excited about stuff like that. I see a deer and I don't think of Bambi, I think of it neatly packaged in my freezer. I've been able to get local eggs for about a month now and it was a big deal. First of all they were colored, so Gordon thinks they come from magic chickens, plus they taste better. We haven't ordered any beef yet, maybe one year when the deer is low. I think local food is more than just better food, it makes local economies stronger. Good home economics is more important than most people would think.

  2. Amen Mrs. Ed.

    When I see road kill I think of a homeschooling anatomy lesson!