The new farm technology days 2021 is my idea to try to get folks engaged in and thinking about the future of farming.
In the last few years, a lot of the conversation about farming has been focused on how we can do things better. Maybe we can grow less meat, or grow more trees, more crops, more crops in more places, or grow more food in fewer places. These are all great ideas, but they aren’t really new. That’s because farming has been around for thousands of years.
Yeah, I think it’s because we are used to thinking in terms of agriculture and food production. When we think about farming, we think about growing crops in a given area. But if you think about this from a completely different angle, you can see that farming is also very much about the production of animals.
In the agricultural sciences, farmers are called domesticated animals. Now, it’s not clear that the term domesticated should be used as a strict dichotomy, but it seems like it would make a good fit. Animals that are domesticated are usually bred to be raised for their food, while animals that are not domesticated are generally not bred for that purpose. However, from the perspective of humans, domestication is not what matters in farming.
Farm animals are bred to increase their productivity, such as increasing the size of their offspring, or to help them to eat better for some reason. You might consider a cow, or a pig, or a goat, but it’s not a huge leap to say that they’re bred to be bred. And that’s exactly what we’re doing with the cattle we’re working with today.
Of course, the question becomes, how do we breed cows, pigs, and goats to be better for us and the environment? The answer is that we have lots of choices. We can breed them to produce more milk, or more meat. If we do that, then those animals produce more milk, and their offspring produce more meat. They also have less methane emissions.
That is one very good reason to breed them to produce more milk. This is great for the environment. When cows and pigs are bred to produce more milk, we are not producing more garbage. When pigs and cows are bred to produce more meat, we’re not producing more garbage. And they are not eating more garbage. And they are not eating less garbage. And they are not eating meat from animals that are eating from animals.
It is worth noting that the average cow produces 3.8 gallons of milk a day. The average cow produces roughly 5 gallons of milk for every pound of meat it eats. Because it makes so much more sense to breed cows and pigs to produce more meat, we should breed them to produce more milk.
While most of the focus of this blog has been on the “meat” part of dairy, the “animal” part of dairy is a different story. A few weeks ago I was talking with a friend about the meat-ethic of beef. We discussed how we would eat the meat of cattle raised without the benefit of antibiotics, hormones, and other drugs that have plagued our meat industry.
What we eat has been in the spotlight recently because of the “new” human meat. This means that we can’t use a lot of the FDA approved additives to make the meat we eat more tasty. But you can’t stop us from breeding cows to produce milk or even to produce more meat.