It is important for me to know where my food comes from, especially when it comes to eating meat. When I was in my early 20’s I started reading and researching how slaughter animals were treated in this country. After reading Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser, I was so appalled that I chose to eat vegan.
During my two-year period of being vegan, various health issues started to pop up, such as fatigue, digestive issues and menstrual irregularities. I knew that eating vegan wasn’t working for me but I had a hard time feeling good about eating meat again. This is when a friend of mine introduced me to a farmer who raised grass-fed beef on their small family farm. I was able to visit the farm and saw that the animals were grazing happily in the fields, eating their traditional diet of grass in the summer and hay in the winter, not corn and soy. I discovered that I could feel OK about adding meat back into my diet—if I knew where it came from. Now, after two years, I’ve found that I feel better and my health issues have gone away since I started including small portions of grass-fed meat in my diet.
The reason I bring this up now is because it’s spring and the farmers’ markets are starting up again this week. This coming Saturday will be the Dane County Farmers Market’s first weekend outdoors on the Square. Farmers’ markets are a terrific resource and opportunity to get to know your local farmer and know where your food is coming from. Here’s a link with a list of markets in the greater Madison area.
Finally, I’d like to provide this link to an NPR radio show featuring Michael Pollan. Pollan is a journalist and author who has done a lot of research on where our food comes from. This radio show gave a brief and surprising peek into the journey from farm to the table. It is well worth listening to and will truly give you some food for thought!