July 6, 2021 • 0 comment(s)
If a picture is worth a thousand words then I'll skip 975 of them and let this comparison speak for itself.

One glance is enough.

These two beef environments show a stark contrast... and so does the resulting beef you eat. I know without a shadow of a doubt which system I want to support.
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June 29, 2021 • 0 comment(s)
Sometimes I feel like a double agent privy to inside information. Often it's sensitive, potentially damaging information on chemical farming to which, if the "chem farm" folks were wiser, they really shouldn't allow me access. Especially since they should know who I am. You know, one of those lunatic, chemical-free, organic farmers!
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June 22, 2021 • 0 comment(s)
So after we've hashed over the dilemma of GMOs in the last two episodes, it brings us to several pressing questions.

The questions take a few different forms, but they usually boil down to something along the line of these three 'what-can-I-do' questions: What can I Do to avoid feeding GMOs to my family? I want to help... What can we Do to STOP GMO corporations? What can I Do to encourage more farmers to switch to non-GMO?
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June 15, 2021 • 0 comment(s)
GMO Weasel Words

One of the most common tactics of the GMO industry is to intentionally muddy the waters by deliberately confusing terms which are really quite scientifically distinct. For example...
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June 8, 2021 • 0 comment(s)
Something has been bothering me for a while. Sometimes it's just a niggling in my background consciousness. Other times it comes to the forefront and gets in the road of other important stuff. But it's always there. That something is GMOs.

Well, actually, GMOs themselves aren't what's bothersome. I know where I stand. And I know where we stand as a farm and a family...
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May 3, 2021 • 0 comment(s)
A while ago, I gave you all an open invitation to share raw milk healing stories. I knew you had them... and you didn't disappoint. Thank you for sharing! So here is a sample, folks. These are real people with real healing from real foods in their own words.
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March 25, 2021 • 0 comment(s)
It's another spring day on the farm, Easter is just around the corner, and along with that comes those delicious hams.

But today I'm not going to focus on the flavor of our Woodland Pork Hams or why you really should try my Mom's Ham & Bean Stew. I mean, yes, I think it is the best Ham & Bean Stew... but we'll save that for another time. :)

Today I'll answer a few questions to show you how we raise Woodland Pigs and bring you the highest quality pork possible...
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December 24, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
I'm excited to finally unveil our brand new beef bone broth: EPIC CHIPOTLE!

Yep, that's the official name... :)

We've spent the last month working on the plans and tweaking the recipe. Of all the spicy bone broths we've ever made, this one is second-to-none. Our whole family and team LOVES it!

But beyond the amazing flavor, this broth is packed with real grass-fed beef nutrition, PLUS other powerful health-promoting ingredients...
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October 30, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
Good morning tribe,

It's high time we send an update on the butcher shop. After all, settlement on the property was almost two months ago! – Thursday, 9/3/2020.

Since settlement, we've been making constant improvements to the property and equipment. That's the reason for this post.

We just finished a major renovation project which paves the way for future upgrades... and we want to share a few pictures.
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August 5, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
Yes! We can finally tell the good news...

I know some of you had already guessed, but we still couldn't officially announce it until the purchasing process was closer to settlement. The place we're buying is the small local shop that's been our primary butcher ever since we started The Family Cow in 2008....
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April 30, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
Let's face it. The Great Lockdown has created unknowns and uncertainties that defy comprehension. We're in uncharted waters. No model exists to predict what's ahead.

We could argue whether the lockdown to 'flatten the curve' was wise or if we should have allowed 'herd immunity' to get us past the curve quickly. But I'm not going there. The point is...
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April 3, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
I'm not going to even pretend that life is normal. It's not. I'm 50 years old and I've never seen times like these. I've talked with some who are 80 and they've never seen times of uncertainty like this either.

So we are in new territory. None of us really know what is ahead of us. But I do have a feeling that the people and relationships in our lives are going to be more important and special to us than ever before.

And I also know this. We have a God who does know the future and He is in control. So if...

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March 21, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
Good morning Family Cow friends,

Yes, it is still a good morning. Our Abba Father God is still Good and there is still a lot of good in His good world. Good people, good communities, good families, good friends with goodwill helping each other. This goodness is inspirational if we allow it to be our focus.

The spring sunshine is good and it is still shining even if it is sometimes behind clouds. Spring is here, spring grass is here and the miracle of new birth and new growth is here, and there is hope. It's all good.

And yes... there is love. YES! Share it.
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February 8, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
This year was special. It was a dream come true!

What was so special about it?

We grew a crop from the earth... to give back to the earth.

Yes, you heard right. We bought seed, planted it, and carefully nurtured a multi-species crop for no other purpose than to return it to the earth...
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January 20, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
Grass-feeding cows is simple, right?

The farmer puts the cows out in the fresh grass and just lets them eat it. And the the next day the herd is moved to new grass. Nothing to it.

Yes... But what about during the winter? How do you grass-feed cows in the winter?
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December 9, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
As an organic farmer, I just totally love finding creation's answer to a problem... You'd have to experience the thrill to know. It just feels so right, so satisfying... so rewarding.

It feels like God looks down, and smiles, and says "Yes! That’s my way! Use life to balance life. That is the way I designed my eco-system to function – Each life group balancing out the others so that none become out of control."
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November 26, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
After Worse than Monsanto and then the Concentration Farms post, a lot of you are asking good questions.

Since USDA Certified Organic foods are sometimes coming from Concentrated Animal Farms, and these industrial farms quite likely are sourcing their organic feed from imported, possibly fraudulent sources: How can we know? Who can we trust? Which foods are pure and safe? Which brands sell food from confined animal compounds?
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November 12, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
The problem with industrial organics is much deeper than fraudulent imported grain. In fact, to me, that's not their most deceptive tactic.

The most deceptive is that factory farmed food from concentrated animal farms is intentionally being marketed as 'free range' and 'free roaming' and foisted unto unsuspecting shoppers.
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November 11, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
Hey, this is exciting!

We are starting a delivery route to Maryland beginning next week on Wednesday (11/20), which happens to be my dad's (Edwin's) birthday. :)

Here are the five Maryland pickup locations. Click for details:
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November 4, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
How many people could 5 million dollars bribe? I know, crazy question... but stick with me and I'll explain.

So, the gloves are off, the gantlet is down and we've crossed the Rubicon. There is no turning back. Here's the truth: Fake Industrial Organics are Worse than Monsanto.

Seriously?
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July 29, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
Good evening Family Cow Folks! I'm sorry I didn't write earlier. I knew you'd have questions and you do deserve answers. The truth is simple. I was busy with spring and summer farm work and didn't have much time to write. I know busy isn't exactly a creative excuse, but it'll have to do in a pinch. :) So here's the question I'm pretty sure you've asked. "Ok... Mr. Shank... so you are right. The new Family Cow butter is yellower, softer and all around more delectable than almost any butter we have ever experienced...
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April 19, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
What is it about this dirt... this ground of our farm? Sometimes I think about it. How my great grandparents and my grandchildren, even though they've never met, have all held it in their hands.

Isn't that awesome? It's humbling. Life is short and fragile and passing, but the dirt remains... connecting us all.

Six generations of family have worked this land Close to 100 years. We've milked the cows and gathered the eggs, fed the pigs and raised our families.
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April 16, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
I've Never Done This Before

I've never published another farmer's thoughts in Fresh Thoughts on Real Foods. But I guess there's a right time for everything. This crazy story feels like the right time.

Plus the farmer who wrote this piece is none other than the renowned Joel Salatin himself, the farmer/writer/philosopher of Polyface Farm, so maybe you'll forgive me.

Some folks call Joel the most famous farmer in the world...
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March 26, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
Just Imagine! What if you'd wake up on The Family Cow farm some chilly but sunny morning in March? What if we'd allow you to tag along with our chicken manager, Marlin Charles, as he expertly starts our first 600 chicks for the year? You'd go with Marlin every step of the way... picking the chicks up at the post office, settling them safely into their cozy brooder and helping them each find their first feed and water.
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August 13, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
Good afternoon folks, It IS a GOOD afternoon even though bad things are happening. It's still good because, in spite of the bad, good is here to overcome the bad. Let me explain: What is The bad? Organic milk customers are being disrespected and intentionally deceived by factory farms into thinking that their 'organic' milk comes from cows on grass and happy in pasture when it actually does not. And it's happening on a very industrial, family-farm-crushing scale. To make matters worse, this deception is aided and abetted by the USDA. This is bad.
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