let's talk farm animals

Meet Mr. May in the 2012 Faces of Farming calendar

 
by Patricia Grotenhuis

The world of horse racing beckoned for a 10-year period for Darryl Drain, but eventually he found his way back to the family egg farm. Drain’s role as an Ontario egg farmer and an advocate for the egg industry has earned him a spot as the face of May in the 2012 Faces of Farming Calendar published by the Farm Care Foundation. His page was sponsored by Egg Farmers of Ontario.

He had always planned on eventually taking over the farm, but the road between when he left his father’s farm and on-farm store and when he returned to it was a long one.  Drain studied at the University of Guelph for a diploma in agricultural business, and then took a step towards training racehorses.

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Posted by Farm and Food Care on May 9th, 2012 :: Filed under Animal care,Canada,Consumers,Education and public awareness,eggs,Faces of Farming,Farm life
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Where is the transparency at Burger King?

By: Leslie Ballentine, Farming and Food Commentator

I was as surprised as anyone to hear the news last week that Burger King in the U.S. is making an exclusive move to purchase “cage-free” eggs and pork within five years. It has certainly dominated the news. Even my urban friends (knowing I work in agriculture) have brought it up the past few days. Sadly however I haven’t been able to provide answers to some of their questions.

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Posted by FFC on April 30th, 2012 :: Filed under eggs,Food,Housing,HSUS,Retailers
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Even experts can inflate the facts

By: Leslie Ballentine, Farming and food commentator

A recent news item in the Vancouver press illustrates why we need to be critical of what we read, regardless of who it comes from. This particular news story highlighted the growing demand for animal welfare certified foods in B.C. To her credit the journalist went to a noted expert rather than a vested marketer to write her story. In this case she cites UBC professor of applied ethics and long-time welfare researcher David Fraser.  According to her reporting, the animal welfare expert says the move (to certified humane) is part of a larger consumer trend of rejecting products from factory farms.

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Posted by FFC on August 22nd, 2011 :: Filed under Consumers,eggs,Food,Media,Organics
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Guest blog: Ballot measures scuttled

Dan Murphy  

(Dan Murphy is a veteran food-industry journalist and commentator in the United States)

Updated: July 11, 2011 -  Both sides are carefully calling the agreement between the nation’s egg producers and HSUS leadership a “victory.” For industry, that means that two ballot measures set for November that would have asked Oregon and Washington voters to ban the use of cages in egg production will now be withdrawn.

Why? Mostly because the odds of victory were looking less certain for HSUS.

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Posted by FFC on July 13th, 2011 :: Filed under Activism,Animal care,Chickens,eggs,HSUS,Regulations,Uncategorized
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Farm animals save lives

By Leslie Ballentine,  Farm and food commentator

When we think of cattle, pigs or poultry we may think of our next meal. But what many don’t know is that farm animals provide more than just sustenance.  They also save lives in other ways too.

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Posted by FFC on July 4th, 2011 :: Filed under animal by-products,Beef cattle,eggs,Innovation and technology,Pigs,Research
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Laying hen housing not all it’s cracked up to be

By Leslie Ballentine, Farming and food commentator

I just finished reading some more animal science studies out of Europe (a sure cure for insomnia) on what “free range” and “free run” laying hens are up against. And it’s a bit of a buyer-beware scenario too. Although it is a small niche market here in North America, so-called “cage-free” egg production in the UK has steadily grown in the last 20 years. That is where egg laying hens can move around within the confines of a pasture or barn. But the health and animal welfare news isn’t all good.

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Posted by FFC on May 12th, 2011 :: Filed under Chickens,eggs,Housing,Poultry,Research
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Urban egg farmer: top ten list of chores

With a growing interest in buying local, there has also been an increased interest by urban residents in growing their own foods and, in some cases, raising their own chickens for eggs. Here’s a fact sheet prepared by Egg Farmers of Ontario that gives you some tips to think about before you get a backyard flock of your own. – OFAC

Urban Egg Farmer: Top Ten List of Chores

There has been a growing interest in raising egg-laying hens in urban environments.

Properly taking care of chickens requires some physical adaptations to a typical backyard, a daily time
commitment to caring for your flock, a lot of preparation, and a great deal of expertise.

If you are considering having a backyard flock of your own, here is an example of a chore list you should expect.

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Posted by FFC on December 24th, 2009 :: Filed under Animal health,backyard flocks,eggs
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BC Egg Farmers Care for the Right Reasons

BC egg farmers care for the right reasons. There is more to caring for hens than meets the eye.

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Posted by BCFACC on October 16th, 2009 :: Filed under Animal health,Education and public awareness,eggs,Poultry
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The business of Eggs

Food For Thought looks at how we use hens as protein factories to produce an egg a day for our tables

By Luisa D’Amato, Waterloo Region Record, 05 Jul 2008

When you walk into the long, dimly lit barn where Gary West keeps 25,000 egg-laying hens, the first thing you notice is the sound.

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Posted by FFC on July 22nd, 2009 :: Filed under Education and public awareness,Poultry
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Canada’s Egg Farmers Welcome Change

OTTAWA, Aug. 22 /CNW Telbec/ – Working in one of the country’s most dynamic agriculture industries, Canada’s egg farmers have had little time to rest. Just ask Laurent Souligny, 64, a proud egg farmer and chairman of the national egg farmers’ organization, Egg Farmers of Canada (EFC).

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Posted by FFC on July 21st, 2009 :: Filed under Animal health,Canada,Poultry
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