“The kids went directly from playing in the mud to skating on the pond this week. The weather station registered a low of 2 during the cold snap, and it was windy. Together, that was just enough to flush out the weaknesses in our winter systems. We had a few frustrating moments in the dairy barn, and a mishap in the west cooler that left some products frozen solid. But on the whole, all the people and all the beasts on the farm came through the first patch of real cold very well. We are close to the last of the kale because of it, and the spinach is iffy at best now, but even iffy spinach is amazing in the north country in January.
The last of the broiler chickens were slaughtered yesterday. I’m sure we’ll toast that fact at team dinner tonight. As much as we all love chicken, there are not many on our crew who deeply love chickens, at least this time of year. Chores are a drag and wintertime chicken slaughter, even in such a mild winter, is a cold, wet, messy, unpleasant job. I am not usually on the chicken slaughter crew myself but I can be sure it’s a chicken slaughter day when I see Ben looking grouchy, or when I see one of the farmers walking around with a blotch of gore on her forehead. In 2016, we’ll aim for finishing chickens in the fall instead of at the turn of the year.
We lost a beef cow to an accident this week…” Continue Reading this Essex Farm Note.