Thursday, June 20, 2013

Should Homesteaders be concerned about GMO's?

Hidey Ho Friends!
I ran across a posting on Facebook today, where the discussion was centered, around whether a lot of the information we've been seeing lately about genetically modified organisms is true, or just a bunch of hype.  The question was whether folks had been noticing lower fertility rates in chicken eggs coming from hens on conventional feed.

We'll I've got a duck sitting right now, I'll let you know if she hatches out any goslings.  I'm using pretty much the same feed as I always have, and I've had chickens hatch out eggs before.  That being said  The feed contains alfalfa, which means way more GMO's now than even just last year.  Should we be concerned about the health of both ourselves, and our animals on these conventional feeds?

Well health reasons notwithstanding we've committed at our place to getting ourselves and our animals off of GMO's, if only for political reasons.  ""That unnamed Corporation"" (Wouldn't want to get sued) is killing off the small farmer, using underhanded techniques and obviously has less than  scrupulous dealings with Washington DC.  I simply refuse to support a company that doesn't have the public's interest at heart.  (I know, I know,,,, I shouldn't be able to buy anything from anybody then, lol).  We are working on it however!!!

We don't keep any money in the bank, and only use a local credit union when there's banking that we absolutely have to do.  We avoid Wal-Mart like the plague.  We don't impulse buy, and shop local whenever possible.  I'm working on replacing store bought grain with home grown oats, barley, and wheat.  We're also experimenting with Mangle beets (A historic fodder crop that can grow 10 lb tubers!).  We've been playing with techniques for sprouting grains to stretch them out, and get more bang for the buck.  We've also found a local source of all grass fed beef, and started buying pork raised on only organic non GMO feed.

I've got some aussie willow branches sprouting roots in a bucket hoping to eventually plant a goat / chicken """Food Forest""" of willow and hybrid poplar.  Both of which are really nutritious fodder for goats.  Goats actually prefer browse over grazing.  The higher off of the ground they are eating... The less problems you'll have with worms, Coccidiosis, and liver flukes.   I'm hoping that using these techniques will make us more resilient to shortages (Can you say drought - Boys and Girls) and price fluctuations.  You can buy a bag of organic barley seed for about the price of a bag of layer pellets anyhow, so why not grow your own?

We're finding here in our household... That the more self reliant we become, the more we can engage in what I call "Checking out of the system", the happier we find ourselves.  We're not relying on someone far away to provide what we need, and the peace of mind that brings to our hearts is almost magical!

I've done a lot of reading about GMO's and their possible health risks, but that issue for me becomes inconsequential when viewed under the concept of simply doing what I think is right.  Doing what I think I owe to those I leave behind!  None of us "Small People" (As the CEO of BP called us during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill fiasco), has a chance on our own of making much change in our world, but we can do our own small part... in our own small way.  Our actions together can make a difference though, and what I'm finding out is that it's not so inconvenient after all.  Having the peace of mind that comes from being self reliant, and maybe living a healthier life are some pretty good side benefits!!!

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