Yesterday I paid $16/kg for chicken mince so Im now looking at my girls in a different way - Im seriously contemplating raising some for meat, so will have to visit the library for some relevant texts. Mollison argues that the vegan contention that a meatless society will solve the worlds food crisis is a fallacy. He reasons that the more complex systems in permaculture are by far the most productive in terms of bio-mass but that livestock (which includes poultry and aquaculture) is required to convert much of that bio-mass into forms people can eat. The vegan utopia model of monocropping edible vegetables has never been tested extensively, and the largest vegetarian populations, which are in India, use cows for milk, yoghurt, cheese, butter and transportation, and their dung for manure, heating and house building. I suspect that the sacred status of the cow is an ancient sustainability tactic, similar to tapus imposed in the Cook Islands to allow food resorces to recover, and allowing fields to lie fallow. In cold regions livestock were kept under the house to provide under-floor heating.

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Comment by Megan on August 17, 2012 at 2:56pm

Hello Kali & SMFF - the meat on free range birds are perfect for long slow cooking and make the best ever curries, coq au vin etc. If you mince the chicken raw, it can be tenderised by adding yoghurt (preferably homemade with kefir grains :)) and when you make the broth, only just simmer the chook (almost a slow poach) & it will be more tender then the meat can be shredded and combined with sauted onions & mushrooms, carrots & whatever else you like in a white sauce using chicken broth instead of milk, to make a pie filling. I'm probably preaching to the converted......

Comment by Kali on August 17, 2012 at 2:01pm

Once you introduce animals you can quickly get a surplus,  when you  raise chickens and let them reproduce you  obviously get some males which are not required, this is the only chicken our family eats now, more for the broth than the meat itself because that can be stringy on freerangers. my son calls it liquid gold :)

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