Adios End Zone

Update: Last outdoor market November 13th. Turkey day November 22nd. Resuming winter meat drops in Madison, December 4th.


Good bye to the biggest boar I’ve ever raised. A gentle giant, End Zone weighed 965 lbs at the sale barn in Iowa. He was also an excellent breeder until the end, when he just got too big.

His genetics aren’t lost. I’ve kept a couple boars and a couple gilts as breeders.

If I kept better records, I could trace this boar’s ancestors back about 40 generations on our farm. I wonder what my ancestors were like, 40 generations ago.

My sister enjoys researching our family’s history. That pursuit is all about seeing how far back you can go. Very interesting.

But really, if you want clues to your own genetics, look at your closest family. Their virtues and faults, which you probably know all too well, are susceptible in you.

And when examining faults, I’ve always found its more productive to look in the mirror!

5 Responses to Adios End Zone

  1. He was a nice looking Bore, I bet you were kinda sad to see him go.

  2. Heather Butler says:

    I am sorry you had to say goodbye to your rock star boar.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Farewell, End Zone, we hardly knew ye . . . but we know your owner cared about you.

    Speaking of keeping track of things — not family information — have you and any other farmers you know considered “distributed ledger technology”?

    The cryptocurrency versions are BitCoin and Ethereum, and so on. But the basic technology (blockchain is one) can hopefully provide an accurate “trail” of where meat and produce came from.

    Seems like consumers today — like me — would prefer to buy almost direct from you, and farms similar to yours. This is one way to more or less guarantee to them, where the farm-to-fork food came from, if they can’t buy completely and absolutely direct.

  4. Thank you. Yes, always sorry to see good ones go.
    Anonymous, interesting, I don’t pretend to understand that technology. Our trouble is finding enough space at the butcher to meet demand and figure out how to get all our work done without hiring employees. I know I’ll always be “small-time” if I don’t want to manage other people and grow the business, but its about quality of life for me.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Matt, yes, you have an extremely good business going already . . . the question about blockchain was aimed more at you-and-other-farmers-you-know.

    If I understand blockchain at all, it is just “one page” (or one block) per transaction.

    Back when you were sending animals to a slaughterhouse, your farm would have been the first “block.” The facility would haEve been the second. If there were any kind of distributer, that would have been the third. The consumer would have been the fourth.

    Whereas the chain for getting food into a big (horrible) outfit like Wal-Mart or Costco would have many more blocks, a/k/a ledger pages. And yet — if they began using that technology — it would be much, much easier to find the source of some kind of E. coli or whatever.

    I have this idea that it might be possible for a group of farmers to hire someone knowledgeable about “distributed ledger technology” (because it’s programming and computer stuff). Very much like hiring a knowledgeable accountant with a specialty.

    But perhaps that idea is still wishful thinking, because so many of the young Turks working in blockchain are trying to get rich quick (and using prodigious amounts of energy with computer arrays) — instead of trying to improve food safety. You and your group already do that . . . the only benefit of blockchain would be that it makes it possible to prove it.

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