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Below are excerpts from the Introduction of Joel's new book:
Every day I make thousands of beings happy. What a distinct privilege. Few people and few vocations present such an ecstatic opportunity. I love moving chickens and cows and pigs because I know how happy it makes them.
One of my favorite chores is moving chicken shelters, both broilers and the eggmobiles. The unbridled delight these animals express through their demeanor and antics when offered a fresh salad bar is both obvious and palpable. You can feel the happiness in the flock.
* * * *
Amazingly, the farms that dump on chemicals, dope their animals, confine their animals in factory farms without fresh air, sunshine, and salad bar are now considered normal and I'm the lunatic. As the industrial food system grows, I realize more and more how different my paradigm is, on many levels. We are not simply a preference apart. We are not just different nuances of the same thing. We are on different planets. In fact, we are on a collision course. We are at war.
I believe some things are right and some things are wrong. I think some ideas are right and some are wrong. I think a dark side does exist. And I don't want to be a part of it. I can't imagine working for outfits trying to extract the porcine stress gene so we can disrespect pigs even more but at least they won't be stressed about it.
I can't imagine working for Monsanto, a company that sues farmers for patent infringement when Monsanto's genetically engineered pollen wafts over and impregnates the neighbor farmer's crop. That's not about preferences. That's evil.
But rather than being downtrodden and depressed, I'd rather enjoy encouraging, developing, and living in a more righteous system. What I've learned is that what Monsanto and company (which includes the United States Department of Agriculture, the Food Safety and Inspection Service, the Food and Drug administration, other globalists and most politicians) considers lunacy is actually sheer ecstasy. To watch our animals exuberantly dance into their salad bar rather than slink back sullenly against cellmates in a fecal factory concentration camp farm. To enjoy customers and visitors interacting with the farm, building relationships and memories that will carry integrity to the dinner plate. That sure beats NO TRESPASSING signs and BIOSECURITY warnings. It sure beats having to don a hazardous material suit and walk through sheep dip just to visit the the animals.
Joel Salatin, BA is a full-time farmer in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. A third generation alternative farmer, he returned to the farm full time in 1982 and continued refining and adding to his parents’ ideas.
The farm services more than 3,000 families, 10 retail outlets, and 50 restaurants through on-farm sales and metropolitan buying clubs with salad bar beef, pastured poultry, eggmobile eggs, pigaerator pork, forage-based rabbits, pastured turkey and forestry products using relationship marketing.
He holds a BA degree in English and writes extensively in magazines such as Stockman Grass Farmer, Acres USA, and Flavor.
The family’s farm, Polyface Inc. (“The Farm of Many Faces”), has been featured in Smithsonian Magazine, National Geographic, Gourmet and countless other radio, television and print media. Profiled on the Lives of the 21st Century series with Peter Jennings on ABC World News, his after-broadcast chat room fielded more hits than any other segment to date. Polyface achieved iconic status as the grass farm featured in the New York Times bestseller Omnivores Dilemma by food writer guru Michael Pollan and the Grammy-nominated documentary, Food Inc.
A sought-after conference speaker, he addresses a wide range of issues, from “creating the farm your children will want” to “making a white collar salary from a pleasant life in the country.” A wordsmith, he describes his occupation as “mob-stocking hervbivorous solar conversion lignified carbon sequestration fertilization.” His humorous and conviction-based speeches are akin to theatrical performances, often receiving standing ovations.
He has authored six books, four of them farming how-to types: Pastured Poultry Profits: Net $25,000 in 6 months on 20 Acres; Salad Bar Beef;You Can Farm: The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Start and Succeed in a Farming Enterprise; and Family Friendly Farming: A Multi-Generational Home-Based Business Testament. The stated objective of Holy Cows and Hog Heaven: The Food Buyer's Guide to Farm Friendly Food is to "encourage every food buyer to embrace the notion that menus are a conscious decision, creating the next generation's world one bite at a time." His last book published 2007, Everything I Want to do is Illegal: War Stories from the Local Food Front, explains the hurdles and opportunities facing local food systems.
His speaking and writing reflect dirt-under-the-fingernails experience punctuated with mischievous humor. He passionately defends small farms, local food systems, and the right to opt out of the conventional food paradigm.