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  • Eating Francis | Green Gate Farms
    was Skip wanted a tasty pig not one of the bland mass produced kind I plugged heritage pig into Google and the odyssey began Links led to calls to organizations like Texas Organic Farmers and Gardners Association the Texas Pork Association Slow Foods No one knew where to find one piglet A hundred no problem But one I called feed stores and farmers You want a feeder or a show pig I had no idea The kind of condescension country folks reserve for city folks worsened with each call You do know that pigs are not native to our state doncha a farmer growled after I stumbled through my reasons for not wanting your everyday run of the mill factory farmed hog Time was running out when fate intervened The paper ran a full page feature story on a heritage hog farmer less than an hour from us On the morning of Skip s surprise party I raced to fetch his gift a half Hampshire half Berskhire barrow Our piglet was not promising He was a squealing terrified 35 pound 8 week old boy piglet all black except for the white band that encircled his body and front legs An enormous Oreo cookie Barely 45 had liberated him from his parents who at 500 pounds each gave me a finer appreciation for the sausage I ve slapped on my plate without a thought As I drove my prize to the party an unfamiliar musky odor wafted forward from the back of my Subaru station wagon But that was all not a grunt not a whimper Mr Pig lay his thick head between pink hooves looking scared and miserable I felt bad but what can you do He was merely a meal waiting to happen the fulfillment of my husband s midlife fantasy Skip was stunned and overjoyed with his present Amazed that I pulled it off I put my attentions to the farm and controlling our puppy who wouldn t stop jumping on the kids or me Each jump ended with a nip every assault involved rips scratches and tears One morning Boone s razor sharp teeth rips a hole in my nightgown my nipple pops out The kids think Mommy s nipple is hysterically funny But after the fourth nipple level tear I begin to wonder if we re planning to eat the wrong animal Boone poops everywhere digs up my garden and destroys boots Our pig is so peaceful by comparison He relieves himself in one area has no interest in tearing my clothes and quietly plays with his toy a bowling ball when he s in the mood He likes to have his back scratched but won t beg for it None of this desperate need to be included or entertained It occurs to me that pigs are more dignified than dogs And better company As the days go by I begin to feel hey pig is a bit impersonal I suggest Sir Francis as in Sir Francis Bacon to serve as a constant reminder of his fate It sticks We have our hands full getting the vegetable gardens started so we assign feeding the animals to the kids They take pride in scooping out the pellets and pouring them into round metal feeders Soon we notice Sir Francis is leaving food in his bowl Is it because we switched to a cheaper feed Skip checks the chow It looks kind of gummy which is odd because it s stored in tightly sealed metal garbage cans But instead of firm brown pellets it looks like old Grape Nuts cereal No wonder the pig s not interested As I scoop through it my stomach tightens One of our reference books said pigs can get a horrible disease from eating spoiled feed Avery is playing with the hose spraying the ducks when Skip asks her if she knows how the feed got wet I put water in the garbage can so Sir Francis will like his food more she reports clearly pleased with her ingenuity After watching us add water to his food bowl to make the slop he adores she figured she d save a step There goes 60 At five Avery is quite confident about how the world works and gets upset when she s corrected I take her aside and gently ask what would happen if we put milk in our box of Cherrios then put it on the shelf I don t want to dampen her enthusiasm or embarrass her Besides our midget workers have to stay motivated if we re going to get anything out of them Time to for me to get more involved with feeding Francis begins to associate me with rotten fruit tomatoes gone soft wilted lettuce leaves and oozy brown items decaying at the bottom of the crisper drawer When I call him his ears perk up But because pigs don t see well he squints and peers around trying to locate me like a librarian in the stacks When he finds me he bounds over ears flopping grunting with pleasure There is something faintly prehistoric about him You feel the presence of warthogs rhinos and elephants as he tramps through his wallow He snorts presses his snout against the gate and wiggles his backside I pour scraps into his bowl he dives in like Thanksgiving As he munches the tight curl in his skinny tail unfurls flaps around and rewinds He s pleased After his snack we play tug I give him a massage he nibbles my fingers He grunts I grunt back As I hang fly strips over Francis s bedding Skip teases me says he s getting jealous Could I be falling in love with a pig Is that possible When we got him in June he weighed as much as Ethan our preschooler Just four months later he weighs more than Skip We guessed it would take a year before he achieved BBQ weight but at

    Original URL path: http://greengatefarms.net/eatingfrancis/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Farmer Erin | Green Gate Farms
    were hippies My have perceptions changed Austin farmers are now superheroes and our city is saturated with farm to work farm to school and my personal favorite farm to face interests Everyone cosmetologists included wants in on the local farm fantasy Who can resist dewy photos Continue Reading 0 Fall CSA Updates By Farmer Erin on October 13 2014 in Blog Farm News In August we were hit with a triple blow As you may know a reckless driver hit Farmer Skip head on as he was driving 55mph on 183 We are lucky he is alive This accident totaled our delivery van and Farmer Skip is being treated for whiplash and persistent pain Because our vegetable CSA provides Continue Reading 0 THE PASSING OF AUSTIN S FARMING PIONEERS By Farmer Erin on August 30 2012 in Farm News This morning I lingered on a creekbed tucked into a shady cove near the ancient granite outcroppings of Burnet Farmers and friends sang Amazing Grace then listened to Sarah Rowland s Methodist preacher lead her memorial service A white wooden rowboat moored under the trees drifted ever so slightly in the heavy August air The Continue Reading 0 Seasonal Transitions By Farmer Erin on May 3 2011 in Farm News Yesterday s temperature was a bracing 55 degrees Perfect for a morning of planting and new pasture construction for the Guinea Hogs But this is a brief reprieve heat is lurking by Saturday the experts predict 98 degrees Temperature extremes such as these have made for a challenging farming season especially when you consider this Continue Reading 2 Is sugar toxic By Farmer Erin on April 18 2011 in Essays Is sugar behind increasing numbers of obese and diabetic Americans hypertension heart disease and many common cancers Continue Reading 0 1

    Original URL path: http://greengatefarms.net/author/erin/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Blog | Green Gate Farms
    grind corn to feed our animals It s a messy job you shovel a ton of shelled corn into a grinder and about half of it coats your entire body with a fine dust that blows out from the top This was the last of last year s corn Continue Reading 0 Fish From the Field By Green Gate Farms on April 29 2008 in Essays Saturday night s strong storms had an unexpected benefit for our kids The power was still out at their school on Monday and everyone was sent home at 10 a m Three of their classmates returned with them so their mom could keep her business appointment in San Antonio That added up to five kids on the Continue Reading 0 Farmers Need Affordable Water By Green Gate Farms on September 16 2007 in Action Alert Wastewater which is more expensive than water has cost our farm almost 10 000 in fees for services we never used Only when we brought together CIty Hall Sustainable Food Policy Board and Austin Water Utility was this situation fixed not just for our farm but for all urban farms and community gardens Continue Reading 0 Vilsack NAIS By Green Gate Farms on September 16 2007 in Action Alert Agriculture Secretary Vilsack announced today that USDA will develop a new flexible framework for animal disease traceability in the United States and undertake several other actions to further strengthen its disease prevention and response capabilities Continue Reading 0 Previous 1 92 93 94 Next Twitter Profile Green Gate Farms greengatefarms Cultivating Healthy Food Farmers and Communities Austin TX 1002 friends 1512 followers 817 tweets Tweeting since May 14 2009 Follow greengatefarms on Twitter Instagram Profile Green Gate Farms greengatefarms http greengatefarms net csa A historic urban certified organic farm cultivating

    Original URL path: http://greengatefarms.net/blog/page/93/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Costs of Obesity | Green Gate Farms
    overall cost of obesity to the U S is 344 billion the study found We ve had an explosion of obesity related disease which is a key driver of rising health care costs said Ken Thorpe professor of health policy at Emory University and a contributing author of the America s Health Rankings report If Texas obesity rate would begin to level off now residents would spend 12 percent less on health care in 2018 than if obesity continues to grow at its current pace Thorpe said On a scale of 1 to 50 we re only a fat 14 By LYNSI BURTON Copyright 2009 Houston Chronicle Washington Bureau Nov 18 2009 11 44AM More than 61 percent of Texas is overweight or obese Obesity in children has reached crisis proportions in Texas More than 35 percent of Texas schoolchildren are overweight or obese The number of overweight and obese children has doubled over the last 20 years and it continues to rise A child who is obese by age 12 has more than a 75 percent chance of becoming an obese adult Studies show that overweight children miss three or four times as much school as children who are not overweight and often struggle with social problems such as depression and low self esteem They also increase their risk for Type 2 diabetes and for adult long term illnesses such as cardiovascular disease stroke hypertension high blood pressure gallbladder disease asthma and certain cancers According to the New England Journal of Medicine the diseases associated with obesity are increasing at the same rate as obesity itself From http www byparents forparents com obesity texas children teens html About Green Gate Farms View all posts by Green Gate Farms Newsletter CSA Week 7 Thanksgiving Pies by Kestrel No comments yet

    Original URL path: http://greengatefarms.net/costs-of-obesity/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Fund a Farmer’s Machinery Co-Op | Green Gate Farms
    Learning Birthday Parties Weddings Special Events GET INVOLVED Community Organizers Internships Workshare Program Volunteer Partners Keep Our Green Gates Open Return to Content Fund a Farmer s Machinery Co Op By Green Gate Farms on January 1 2010 in Action Alert Barriers to entry for new farmers include the high cost of equipment a new tractor costs as much as a new car Create an equipment lending cooperative for area farmers About Green Gate Farms View all posts by Green Gate Farms Become a Vocal Local Tasting Events No comments yet Leave a Reply Click here to cancel reply Comment Name required Email will not be published required Website Make A Donation Fundraising Websites Crowdrise Become A Farm Supporter First Name Last Name Email Address Photos on flick r Helpful Links Join the Meat CSA Manage Your Meat CSA Account Join the 2016 Spring Summer CSA Manage Your Vegetable CSA Send Your Kid To Camp Attend A Workshop Calendar Directions Contact Us About Green Gate Farms a certified organic farm was established by us Skip Connett and Erin Flynn in an underserved neighborhood in east Austin in 2006 Working off farm jobs to fund our efforts we restored a historic

    Original URL path: http://greengatefarms.net/fund-a-farmers-machinery-co-op/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Become a Vocal Local | Green Gate Farms
    Parties Weddings Special Events GET INVOLVED Community Organizers Internships Workshare Program Volunteer Partners Keep Our Green Gates Open Return to Content Become a Vocal Local By Green Gate Farms on January 1 2010 in Action Alert Citizens must speak up if local sustainable food is to thrive Farmers work extremely long hours and are often unable to attend community events Speak out on their behalf About Green Gate Farms View all posts by Green Gate Farms What a Difference a Year Can Make Fund a Farmer s Machinery Co Op No comments yet Leave a Reply Click here to cancel reply Comment Name required Email will not be published required Website Make A Donation Fundraising Websites Crowdrise Become A Farm Supporter First Name Last Name Email Address Photos on flick r Helpful Links Join the Meat CSA Manage Your Meat CSA Account Join the 2016 Spring Summer CSA Manage Your Vegetable CSA Send Your Kid To Camp Attend A Workshop Calendar Directions Contact Us About Green Gate Farms a certified organic farm was established by us Skip Connett and Erin Flynn in an underserved neighborhood in east Austin in 2006 Working off farm jobs to fund our efforts we restored

    Original URL path: http://greengatefarms.net/become-a-vocal-local/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Farmers Need Affordable Water | Green Gate Farms
    Thanks to Council Members Chris Riley and Mike Martinez and their aides Marisa Ballas Andrew Moore and Water Utility staff Dave Anders Rusty Cobern Alice Flora Lora Schneider and Darrel Culberson our four year wastewater nightmare ended this year For the first time since starting our farm in 2006 we are not billed for unused wastewater services when our four acres of crops are irrigated or our animals drink water Our landlord finally installed a separate water meter for our fields Wastewater which is more expensive than water has cost our farm almost 10 000 in fees for services we never used This long ordeal has been exhausting both financially and emotionally Only when we brought together CIty Hall Sustainable Food Policy Board and Austin Water Utility was this situation fixed not just for our farm but for all urban farms and community gardens Thanks to everyone involved especially Marisa Ballas who kept our cause alive when we had lost hope Though the battle for affordable water for sustainable organic farms is not done and we are still out 10 000 this is a step in the right direction What s needed now is an agricultural rate for water Local growers feeding local citizens need to be encouraged About Green Gate Farms View all posts by Green Gate Farms Vilsack NAIS Fish From the Field No comments yet Leave a Reply Click here to cancel reply Comment Name required Email will not be published required Website Make A Donation Fundraising Websites Crowdrise Become A Farm Supporter First Name Last Name Email Address Photos on flick r Helpful Links Join the Meat CSA Manage Your Meat CSA Account Join the 2016 Spring Summer CSA Manage Your Vegetable CSA Send Your Kid To Camp Attend A Workshop Calendar Directions Contact Us About

    Original URL path: http://greengatefarms.net/farmers-need-affordable-water/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Vilsack/NAIS | Green Gate Farms
    interstate commerce Be administered by the States and Tribal Nations to provide more flexibility Encourage the use of lower cost technology and Be implemented transparently through federal regulations and the full rulemaking process One of my main goals for this new approach is to build a collaborative process for shaping and implementing our framework for animal disease traceability said Vilsack We are committed to working in partnership with States Tribal Nations and industry in the coming months to address many of the details of this framework and giving ample opportunity for farmers and ranchers and the public to provide us with continued input through this process One of USDA s first steps will be to convene a forum with animal health leaders for the States and Tribal Nations to initiate a dialogue about the possible ways of achieving the flexible coordinated approach to animal disease traceability we envision Additionally USDA will be revamping the Secretary s Advisory Committee on Animal Health to address specific issues such as confidentiality and liability Although USDA has a robust system in place to protect U S agriculture with today s announcement the Department will also be taking additional actions to further strengthen protections against the entry and spread of disease These steps will include actions to lessen the risk from disease introduction initiating and updating analyses on how animal diseases travel into the country improving response capabilities and focusing on greater collaboration and analyses with States and industry on potential disease risk overall More information on USDA s new direction on animal traceability and the steps to improve disease prevention and control is available at http www aphis usda gov traceability Note to Reporters USDA news releases program announcements and media advisories are available on the Internet and through Really Simple Syndication RSS feeds

    Original URL path: http://greengatefarms.net/vilsacknais/ (2016-05-02)
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