Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Our neighbor, the farmer

In mid-November our neighbors across the street put out a sign selling their produce. We went on a family outing to check out their farm. There are a couple goats, several pens packed quite full of chickens, some gardens, and four catfish ponds.

Prince was only interested in watching the animals for a brief time at a time. He'd rather run around whenever possible.

Now we get all our chickens and eggs from them. The eggs are cleaner, larger, better quality, and cheaper than at the store. Probably all-natural too, but I would scarcely say free range.

In essence we have an informal contract with them - basically, they know they can expect us to buy so many birds each month and we'd like them so many weeks old. They appreciate being able to plan and we appreciate their proximity, reliability, and quality.

Now that I'm on break I want to spend some time interviewing them to find out more about livestock management in Nigeria for my meatpacking book.

The farm very much reminds me that birds of a feather flock together. All the coops were organized by bird color. Small white birds, brown, black, large white....

Beautiful afternoon, it was.

Prince did want to pause and look at the fishies. There are a lot of catfish in each tank and it was feeding time. He was held in shifts by our upstairs neighbor, the farmer, or me while we watched the feeding frenzy.

This is our upstairs neighbor who took us over to see the animals.