We are dedicated to reaching a few goals with our farm. It may take a while to achieve this, but we believe it is entirely possible to do so.
Humane Farm Animal Treatment
We firmly believe that all animals, even those raised explicitly for human consumption, deserve a comfortable, safe, healthy, and natural life. Our mission as the keepers of these animals is to give them the best life possible for as long as they are in our care. When their life comes to an end, we do so in as humanely a way as possible. Animals are not raw materials we produce, nor are they machines, nor are they human. We strive to treat them with the compassion and caring that they deserve while keeping in mind their position in life.
The theme to each animal's treatment is that we do our best to provide them the ability to be as close to "living in the wild" as possible, meaning we give them the ability to be who they are. Each can follow their natural instincts and behavior freely, and that behavior is utilized as a positive addition to our farm.
While farm animals are not pets, they are living beings and deserve to be treated with respect.
Healthy Human Food Production
So much of the food available in America today is overly processed, modified in various ways, and correspondingly low in nutrients. Much of this has evolved over the past 2 or 3 generations in an effort to make food more convenient and more profitable. Only recently are nutritionists beginning to realize the downside to this direction. Our food is becoming devoid of what it is meant to provide, it is being loaded with various man made chemicals to keep it fresh, and it is being altered to unnatural balances of a delicately balanced system. At the same time, health care costs and need in America is skyrocketing.
Modern science is beginning to quantify this difference in food. It is becoming more apparent that things like grass fed beef and lamb is far superior to grain fed. Pastured chicken meat and eggs are far superior to modern commercially raised products. Sunshine, fresh air, and careful management of living spaces drastically cuts the need for commercial medications fed to animals that hamper natural growth and often remain in the finished product.
At Little Sprouts Farm we are striving to raise the nutritional content of our food products to the greatest extend possible by following the lessons in nature and returning to what generations of farmers have known for thousands of years. Following nature and restoring balance creates food that is far superior in nutrition as well as taste and presentation. There is plenty of material available to explain why we are doing this, but if you have questions feel free to ask. To explain HOW we are returning to nature, follow along in the blog. Amongst the humorous stories of failure and mistakes you will see the common thread of how we are not creating, but following nature on the farm.
Positive Influence on Community
A farm should be a shining star of the local community. The local farm provides nutritional food and often recreation for the local population. Unlike factory style production of big conglomerate corporations, the family farm is more like the combination of zoo, grandma's house, and local grocery store.
We are working to be a place people can come to relax, explore, and get in touch with what made America what it is. The spirit of the successful local farmer is an unbreakable one of positivism, creativity, and an enjoyment of the simpler side of life that is unequaled. We wish to spread this positive influence to our local community to the fullest extent possible.
On farm activities such as hay rides, Christmas caroling, harvest festivals, community gardening, U-Pick along with fresh lemonade, summer fruit and vegetable stands, all of these are planned over the coming years. We look forward to seeing each of our customers roaming the farm with the animals, seeing how they live, and breathing some fresh relaxing air with sunshine. Farming is a way of live, as well as a job. We wish to share that with those we serve.
Profitable Farm Only Operation
Yes, profit. Profit is not a dirty word, it is a necessity of life and the driving force of any business enterprise. A business must make a profit to exist and be motivated to expand and improve. To not make a profit for the self employed is the same as an hourly waged person not asking for wages for hours worked. Profit is what makes America work.
Our goal is to learn and demonstrate the reality that a small single family farm CAN make a healthy profit and provide a good lifestyle. It takes being different, and that takes a lot of creativeism, but it also requires that the farm become the center for a good many sciences. The modern day small farm is struggling, but I do not believe it is the fault of farming, nor the fault of large farm corporations. I firmly believe that any change in a market both closes one avenue and opens another. As the face of food production has changed in America over the last few generations, farming must follow the niches opening up. Farming must learn how to follow the systems in nature to lower cost, raise health, and increase profitability.
There are many small family farms in America demonstrating that this is possible, we hope to be one of them soon.