July 27, 2021 • 0 comment(s)
It used to be, whenever you saw a nice yellow egg yolk, you could trust those chickens were the real deal – truly pastured.

Not any more.

Now days....
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.
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?
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...
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...
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.
April 12, 2021 • 0 comment(s)
Raw milk is what The Family Cow is all about. Raw milk defines us. It's who we are and why we are. It's where we've been, how we got here, and where we're going. Raw Milk is why Dawn and I chose the name "The Family Cow." The name expresses our vision most perfectly. What do we get from The Family Cow? Raw Milk! Raw Milk is the most remarkable, healing, immune boosting, nourishing, enzyme rich, perfect-in-every-way whole food we've ever provided or hope to provide for your family.
March 25, 2021 • 0 comment(s)
Today I'll show you how we raise Woodland / Pastured Pigs to bring you the highest quality pork possible.

But first I want you to see a 1 minute video I shot out in the pig pasture on Rodrick's Amen Acres Farm. It's the best way to visualize what we are talking about here. :)

Many people know about the benefits of Grass-fed Beef and truly Pastured Chicken, but Woodland Pork is often underrated.

In reality, the benefits of Woodland Pork are just as profound when compared to Industrial Pork.
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...
November 25, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
This is going to be a bit of a breezy newsletter because I don't have time to go deep. But I did want to share some exciting news.

There are Wedding Bells in our family again!

Our son, Wesley, is engaged to be married to a beautiful girl named Kaylita Stauffer! The wedding is planned for Saturday, February the 6th.
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.
September 14, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
I guess since Wesley's been hinting at more family news... I better step up to the plate, right? So here goes. :)

Some of you remember the post called 'The Only Daughter's Wedding.' The subject was our daughter Gwendolyn's courtship and marriage to a fine young man named Laverne Stoltzfus. Dawn and I didn't do so well adding to the girl population in the family. Even though God richly blessed us with five wonderful boys, Gwendolyn is our only daughter.

But no worries. Even though Dawn and I were a bit light on the girls... Gwendolyn and Laverne seem to be making up for lost time. This spring they started having daughters in doubles!
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....
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...
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...

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.
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...
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?
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."
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?
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.
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:
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.

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...
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.