Farm Animal Biodiversity - Eat

You can help preserve biodiversity when choosing what to eat...

Throughout history, farmers all over the world have raised a broad variety animal breeds to help feed their families and sustain communities. Unfortunately, the factory farm industrial methods of today rely on only a few specialized breeds. As a result, hundreds of animal breeds have disappeared, and with them, the genetic diversity they possess.

Heritage animals are raised outdoors and are allowed to roam freely with the ability to play, peck, root, and explore - to do what animals naturally do. They grow more slowly and naturally, and their meat, milk and/or eggs just taste better. Let’s take pork as an example. Factory-farmed pigs are confined indoors, and have been bred to produce very lean meat that is often dry and somewhat tasteless. Heritage breeds have more intramuscular marbling of fat, which makes for moist old-fashioned flavour.

By choosing heritage breeds when purchasing meat, you are helping to conserve them by economically supporting the small farmers who raise them. In turn, an increase in demand for heritage meat makes it economically viable for other farmers to raise rare breeds and conserve their genetics. Heritage meat is of high quality, is better for your health and the outdoor production system is better for the animals and the environment. If you want to find Heritage breeds in your area visit:

Farmers:

  • Ravenwood Ranch - Caroline, AB. Natural meets, Nubian goats, and butcher shop.

  • Rosewood Farm - East of Winnipeg, MB. Irish Dexter, Belted Galloway, and Speckle Park Cattle.

  • Wholearth - Northumberland County, ON. Tamworth Pork, Shropshire Lamb, Angus Beef, Jersey Giant and Park Cornish Chicken, Bourbon Red Turkey, Pekin and Muscovy Duck.

  • Grass Roots Heritage Breed Farm - Mt Uniacke, NS. Heritage breeds of Pork, Lamb, Beef, Turkey, Chicken

Organizations:

Think Eat Act!