Slaughter.  Butcher.  Same thing. 

Real.  Life.  Meat.

Meat does not come out of the grocery store.  It does not come from plastic wrapped styrofoam dishes in the meat department.

It comes from Cows.  Pigs.  Rabbits.  Chickens.  They were all alive at some point, but our culture has caused us to get sickened by the thought of actually seeing it.  Admitting it. 

Instead, we say to our children (and ourselves), “Yes, honey, beef comes from cows and pork comes from pigs and chicken comes from chicken.”  And, most of the time, that’s where the conversation stops, because we often don’t allow ourselves to go any deeper for fear of evoking the societally unacceptable truth that the meat on our plates was walking a few days ago.

This one was walking a few minutes ago.

And my kids saw it walking.  They saw it “bolted.” (A bolt gun shoots a 3-6″ metal rod straight into the cow’s brain to kill it instantly.)  They saw it butchered. 

On purpose.

We kept our 6-year-old out of school to see it.  We figured he could miss his weekly spelling test to see what we believe is a much more important life lesson. 

Where his food comes from.

And what better person to learn that from than Mike Callicrate and his dedicated staff of butchers, cowboys, office workers, and truck drivers.

Mike brought his prototype mobile slaughter unit to Venetucci Farm and opened it up from 8am till 4ish and invited the whole community to come see the process.  In a fully customized semi trailer, his team slaughtered 6 cows, 1 pig and 2 rabbits*. 


Our boys watched in awe.  They were more glued to it than a kid watching a TV show. 

They weren’t damaged for life.  They won’t require psychological intervention.  They have shown no signs of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

And they know a lot more than their friends, our friends and the majority of society about how, in this case, our meat gets to our plate.

*And then we ate one of our rabbits for dinner.

–  The Goat Cheese Lady

About The Goat Cheese Lady

I am Lindsey. At first I was a city girl. Growing up, the closest thing I had to farm animals were a cat and a cockatiel. In 2009, Herbert (my husband) and I bought our first milk goat and I instantly became an urban farmgirl, attempting to balance city and farm life..before I knew “urban homesteading” was a thing. That’s when we began The Goat Cheese Lady Farm, hence The Goat Cheese Lady blog you’re visiting now. After moving to the country in 2014, I embarked on life as a rural farmgirl. We continued teaching farm and cheesemaking classes, raising more goats and began construction on our cheese creamery. But life had other plans and in 2017, we decided that, due to financial and health issues, we had to close the farm for business. No more classes, no more creamery, a lot less milking. We went back to off farm jobs, I as an Occupational Therapist, Herbert in construction with his business, D&A Home Remodeling. At that point, I made a silent promise to myself that I would corral my entrepreneurial mind and focus on a job for a year. Well, it has been a year and I am back. Not to classes, cheese, soap or lotion, but back to writing. I love it. I’m not sure where it will lead me, but that’s where I’m starting. I’ll continue to write as The Goat Cheese Lady for now, and whatever the future holds, I’ll let you know. Our two boys are 14 and 11 and continue to be louder than my sister and I ever were. We have two dogs, Montaña and Flash, a cat, Jumpy, a flock of chickens and three goats. Yes, we still have Lucy, the goat who helped us start it all and was milked by over 1,000 people. She’s retired but still the boss. Chocolate provides enough milk for our family with some to spare for the dogs. Soccer friends, school friends, coyotes and mice are frequent visitors. There are way too many flies and every so often we see an owl. I’m glad you’re here. Sometimes you’ll laugh out loud, other times you’ll be inspired to appreciate the small things. My hope is that, over your morning cup of coffee or your afternoon work break, you’ll enjoy the antics and inspiration that are my daily life. Lindsey
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5 Responses to Slaughter

  1. very good…. getting children used to violence…

    • Dear allanimalsaustralia, I appreciate your comment and respect your opinion, although mine differs. I have pondered my response, and will share it: My family eats meat. The animals that die for us to have food either live in a disgusting feedlot and die in a giant slaughterhouse to be provided for the grocery store, or, in this case, they die in a pasture with one shot to the head after living every other day of their lives eating grass in a beautiful pasture (this, I prefer to feedlots and giant slaughterhouses). Because we have made the choice to eat meat, we have decided to raise our own or at least know where it comes from. My husband and I made the decision that if we are to continue to eat meat, and if our children are to continue, we need to be aware of the animal’s life and death. In my opinion, I am doing my children a disservice to allow them to think that meat comes wrapped in plastic at the grocery store, and ignore the fact that an animal lived in a feedlot and died in a slaughterhouse so we could eat that meat. I believe it is better that they know what goes into the process of meat getting to their plate so that they have an appreciation for the food they eat and the farmers that raise it in the best way possible. Lindsey

  2. ecofarmer says:

    we also found out about this after it happened. Excellent that you took the kids, even better that you ate your rabbit afterwards. Like you, I am discovering a mission as well, although mine is more plant based-we need everytone to GROW THEIR OWN FOOD!
    I have been following your blog though, as you story has remarkable parallels to ours. We moved last year down to a couple acres near Florence to start a homestead and have since gotten goats (up to 5 of ours now, plus the 2 we are borrowing for the whole impregnation thing) and some llamas, and even more chickens. Lots more chickens. We felt hampered by the Springs insistence you only have 10 chickens and no rooster. We now have like maybe 30? Although only around 20 are laying.
    Yep, gotta love those chickens, and the milk and cheese. Although I am still working on the cheese- I have several versions of lactic cheese down, but have yet to be successful with the mozzerella. Yogurt has been a mixed success story as well, primarily as we have no yogurt maker and I keep trying different ways to keep it warm.
    Anyway, Congrats on the blog, and on the success of your classes. I am hoping to give a class of sorts to some friends next spring once we get back into the milk full bore. Guess I better practise the Mozzerella. 🙂

  3. Bonnie Simon says:

    Thanks for posting this! I wanted to go see the demonstration, but had to work. I think you’re right that we need to know where our food comes from.

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