Salt for Grass Fed Cattle on Pasture

Discussions of large animal herds moving across landscapes typically describe the migrations in terms of the availability of food and water and the avoidance of predators. But there is another, often overlooked factor, in overland migration patterns: the search for salt. Our part of New York is dotted with natural mineral springs. We’re just a few miles from the once-popular spa town of Sharon Springs with its sulfur springs. And a few miles in the other direction lies a hamlet named Salt Springville. In a completely natural setting, wild herbivores find these… Read More

Cooking Dave’s Fried Turkey Wings

Here’s a homemade recipe I’ve developed. When we started selling ground turkey, we used to have a problem selling all the turkey wings. The wing flats are too fiddly to be deboned and ground, so the butcher would pack them up separately. Not too many customers were experienced with turkey wings so that first year we ended up eating most of them ourselves. Since then, we’ve connected with more people who want turkey wings, so we aren’t eating them out of necessity. Now we eat them for the pleasure of doing so…. Read More

Video: Movement, The Key to Pasture Raised Turkeys

I produced a video showing how we move our turkeys on pasture. Yes, our turkeys are certified organic. And while that is important, it only tells you that their feed is free of pesticides, herbicides, GMOs, hormones, and antibiotics. The other critical piece is that our turkeys are moving to fresh grass on pasture. This is what makes pasture-raised a giant improvement over supposedly “free range” poultry. This video shows how we make those pasture movements happen for our turkeys. Movement through our pastures makes all the difference: for our turkeys, for… Read More

Burdock In Autumn: Thoughts On Annoying Plants and Regenerative Farming

Early fall is the time of year when our cattle wear crowns of burdock. Great big gaudy gobs of it.¬†As I mentioned recently, grass fed beef is a bit of misnomer, since we’re actually aiming for a more diverse diet consisting grasses and a wide variety of leafy pasture plants that aren’t technically grasses. Burdock is a plant found on disturbed ground and along the margins of our fields. At this time of year it is evident when the cattle have found a patch of burdock because pieces of it are stuck… Read More

We Received a Fun Mention on KQED

I just learned that someone included our farm in a short audio essay titled “On the Naming of Farms”, broadcast on KQED, the San Francisco public radio station. Here’s the quote that I noticed: Quirky names, like Blue Dragon Farm, Flying Pig Farm, Fluffy Butt Farms or Wrong Direction Farm, are the ones I like best. These names dare you to imagine how they came to be selected, and wonder about the stories behind the scenes. Peggy Hansen I don’t know Peggy, but I appreciate her insight into our choice of a… Read More

Who Are the Best Grass Fed Beef Farms with Home Delivery to New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut?

Looking at the top farms delivering grass grass fed and grass finished beef with home delivery to New York City and the surrounding areas.

A Better Way To Bring Feed To Chickens On Pasture

Here at Wrong Direction Farm every week we serve up two tons of organic feed to the chickens out on pasture. Getting the feed out to the birds has always been a challenge, especially when the chickens are on pastures far from the road. We have tried all sorts of methods for bringing the feed out to the chickens, including wooden bins, 55 gallon barrels, and gravity wagons. Since we make sure our chickens are constantly on the move to fresh grass, this requires the feed supply to move along with the… Read More

Peripatetic Pastoralism

It doesn’t have the current buzzword recognition like “regenerative” or “pasture raised”, but I like talking about our farm as a Peripatetic Pasture Farm. The biggest problem with the word peripatetic is that most people don’t know what it means. Here’s the definition, if you haven’t encountered it before: Peripatetic (adj): Traveling from place to place, in particular working or based in various places for relatively short periods. If you watch wild animals you’ll notice that they never stay in one place for very long. The twin pressures of finding the next… Read More

Compost Mentis

Compost mentis: Pseudo-Latin for having compost on one’s mind. A common condition among farmers and gardeners. With the help of a well-equipped neighbor, we were able to spread some compost yesterday. We worked through about 130 cubic yards before breaking a link on the chain that drives the augers on the spreader. There’s a truism in farming that spreaders never break when empty. Repairs always involve a lot of shoveling to dig down to the rock or frozen chunk that’s causing the problem. At least we weren’t dealing with a spreader full… Read More

Making Meat, Part Two

[Here’s the link to Part One.] I don’t intend to harp on lab-grown meat and meat substitutes indefinitely, but if you’ll indulge another week’s posting on this, I think it is important to look at the food system that these food technologies require and promote. Oligopoly Matters We can start off by acknowledging that commodity meat is a mess, particularly because of the relentless pace of consolidation. Most of the meat industry (indeed the entire food industry) is run as an oligopoly. Each industry segment is concentrated to just four enormous companies… Read More