By Jenna Dooley, The Flip Flop Barnyard

Our family works hard to raise as much of our own food as possible. This includes a garden for fresh eating and preserving food, dairy animals, and raising our own meat. When it comes to meat and dairy, we like to raise them on pasture.

We are very passionate about farming as naturally as possible. This means that we choose to not use any kind of chemicals on our farm and opt for natural alternatives. We raise our beef on a 100% grass based diet (this includes hay and forage supplements), chickens are able to forage for much of their diets and are supplemented with a non-gmo and soy free feed ration, and our pigs are able to root and eat whatever they can find in their designated area. They also receive a ration of non-gmo and soy-free feed.

We’ve spent several years researching, observing, and implementing pasture based farming techniques. It’s been a very fun and rewarding process. We really enjoy watching our animals doing what they were created to do and thriving. We also enjoy sitting down to eat as a family and sharing a meal that we’ve all had a part in raising.

5 Reasons to Raise Pastured Livestock

  1. Knowing where your food comes from and what it is fed is very important. There’s no better way to do so than to raise your own food. Having complete control over what your animals are fed ensures that you are getting exactly what you want out of your livestock.
  2. Being able to provide your family with nutrient dense food that you grow on your own property is so satisfying. You may also want to raise enough to provide some food for family and friends. Having the ability to do so is wonderful.
  3. Teaching your children a lifestyle that enriches them as a person. I believe that there’s no better way to learn about the value of life and working for what you have than in homesteading and raising your own food. The things that children learn are too numerous to list here but the overall value of it is priceless.
  4. Working together as a family is very fulfilling. It is so satisfying to share in raising livestock with your family. You get to spend much time together doing something that you all love to do. You also get to enjoy reaping the benefits of the harvest with them as well.
  5. It is my opinion that pasture raised livestock results in meats and dairy are far healthier for our bodies. By raising your own pastured livestock, you can accomplish eating a healthier diet and living a healthier lifestyle.

Our family has big plans for our future of expanding our farm to be a large scale pasture based farm offering grass fed beef, pastured pork, pastured poultry, and pastured dairy products. We have a dream and have dedicated ourselves to making it happen through hard work and determination.

We have come a long way in knowledge and experience since we started farming in 2012.

There’s a lot to learn about how to manage pastures and what each type of animal needs. We’ve experimented through trial and error and have adjusted our system as needed so that it works well for us.

I truly feel that almost anyone can raise at least some of their own food. Be it a few plants on a balcony, some backyard chickens and meat rabbits, or a full fledged farm filled with livestock, it can be done.  We have learned that we can grow and raise a lot more on a lot less space than we thought we could. And so can you!

If you are interested in learning more about how to raise livestock on pasture, check out my e-book: Pasture Raising Livestock- A Beginners Guide.

About the Author: 

Jenna is a busy wife and a mom to eight kids. She’s a homesteader, homemaker, and homeschooler. She’s very passionate about organic gardening, and naturally raising livestock. You can find her on her blog and YouTube channel, The Flip Flop Barnyard.

Read all of Jenna’s HoA posts here.

Follow Jenna online: