This opinion piece came out in the New York Times this week http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/05/opinion/kristof-arsenic-in-our-chicken.html
It discusses several studies that were conducted by analyzing chicken feathers (like human hair analysis) for drugs and heavy metals. The findings were quite disturbing. They strengthened my stance to source my meats locally from farmers or ranchers who raise their animals in a biologically appropriate manner.
I don’t have to worry about getting a dose of Cipro or Prozac when I eat my chicken from Tara Firma Farms. I have visited the farm and seen their husbandry practices. I know that the chicken I am fueling my body with was not given antibiotics, or other drugs. I know it was not given feed contaminated with heavy metals. The chicken I eat was raised on hillside pastures out in the sun, scratching for bugs. This is a humane and biologically appropriate life for a chicken.
Buying directly from the farmer can be slightly more expensive than purchasing the mass produced, stressed out chickens (or other meats) that are sold in the mega stores. It’s worth it to me. I know that the food that my family eats will nourish us, not poison us. I know the animals were treated humanely and appropriately.
We need to vote with our dollars if we want to continue to have this type of wholesome, nourishing food available to us. Learn about your local farmers, and support them by purchasing their products.