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Moved our pigs from a 20 acre farm to 200 acres & a Chef wants us as his sole source for pork. Yay! Wait, we're gonna need some help.

Photo by Alex Quesada Copywrite 2011
Photo by Alex Quesada Copywrite 2011

THE FARM:

Nature Delivered is a small,family farm that has been raising Duroc sired pigs on pasture land for 6 years.

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Though our operation is very small, we have been blessed with an overwhelming demand for our naturally-raised pork via niche marketing, direct to consumer sales, farmer's markets, co-ops, and restaurant sales.  Most folks buy from us due to concerns for the animals' welfare.  We love our piggies.. 

No gestation crates or farrowing pens here.  Our girls are given the spa treatment.
No gestation crates or farrowing pens here. Our girls are given the spa treatment.
Birthing babies at 2AM - yup... this is what it looks like.  But, the cats keep me warm.
Birthing babies at 2AM - yup... this is what it looks like. But, the cats keep me warm.

 The other reason folks buy our pork is because it tastes darn good.  Seriously, the taste and quality of our pork is greatly effected by what we feed our pigs.

Some of our babies helping out in the garden.
Some of our babies helping out in the garden.
Chestnuts and grapes... does it get any better than this?
Chestnuts and grapes... does it get any better than this?

THE CHALLENGE:

One of our best customers, a James Beard Nominated Chef, Greg Baker of the Refinery (www.thetamparefinery.com), has asked us to be his sole pork supplier for his new restaurant the Fodder & Shine opening in 2014 (https://twitter.com/FodderAndShine).  This restaurant will feature Traditional Southern Foods on a menu researched by culinary historians.  We are very honored to be a part of this locally supplied culinary stroll back in time. 

That being said, the order represents a 100% increase in our production.  Since our pigs are pastured, it's going to take a whole lot more land to finish out twice as many pigs... especially since we had already outgrown our 20 acres last year.  We had to use cell grazing to insure the pigs had fresh pasture daily - which was management intensive & not nearly as much fun for the pigs.. 

In the rainy season, the pigs prefer to use their roofs as hammocks.  That little tarp is supporting over 500 pounds - good tarp!
In the rainy season, the pigs prefer to use their roofs as hammocks. That little tarp is supporting over 500 pounds - good tarp!

THE SOLUTION:

We have partnered with Carnes Batten (one of the few remaining Florida Cowboys) on 200 acres of land for rotationally grazing our pigs with his cattle utilizing permaculture principles.

Yeah, he still uses horses...no ATV's here.
Yeah, he still uses horses...no ATV's here.
Our Favorite Cowboy
Our Favorite Cowboy
This is what "Hog Heaven" looks like.
This is what "Hog Heaven" looks like.

It took nearly 8 months of preparation to get our herd moved to the new site: We waited until the weather was right, staggered our breeding cycles to ensure little ones weren’t coming while the herd adjusted, and downsized the herd to a level that would be manageable should any medical issues arise with exposure to new germs (like when all the kids get sick during the second week of school). The fretting paid off.  We moved the pigs on September 1st, and they have adjusted beautifully to the new farm.

Our cell grazing panels are only used for bed time at the new site.  During the day, these guys get to run and play on acres of land.
Our cell grazing panels are only used for bed time at the new site. During the day, these guys get to run and play on acres of land.

What will this kickstarter be funding?

Fencing:

With the move behind us, now it’s time to concentrate on the infrastructure that will give the pigs their greatest opportunity to self-harvest nutrition from the land.  Breeding stock can get up to 65% of their nutritional needs right out of the ground – grasses, plants, nuts, roots, etc. if there is enough biodiversity.  Growing pigs can get up to 20%.  Our experiments in cell grazing at our other farm achieved mixed results, because of the limited space available.

We are opting for larger grazing areas here at the new site in order to afford the pigs a more diverse offering of yummy things to eat.  Additionally, as Carnes puts it, “Them pigs know the pharmacy better than we do.”   When pigs can choose between medicinal plants, herbs, etc., they are better able to fend off diseases and parasites without human (or chemical) intervention.

Fencing perfect for cattle - not so perfect for pigs.
Fencing perfect for cattle - not so perfect for pigs.

There are perimeter fences and paddock fences throughout the property, but they are predominantly a 3 to 5 strand barbed wire system meant for containing cattle.  Since pigs are essentially raccoons in bulldozer suits, it takes a little more than barbed wire to convince them that the grass isn’t any greener on the other side of the fence.  We have had great success over the years with a high tensile electric fence system.  It’s cost effective, strong enough to deflect most fallen branches, simple to install, and with a strong enough charger, it is excellent at convincing pigs that they really do want to stay put.

Our Registered Duroc boar, a couple of his best girlfriends, and some naughty babies all staying where they belong behind two thin wires of electric fence.
Our Registered Duroc boar, a couple of his best girlfriends, and some naughty babies all staying where they belong behind two thin wires of electric fence.

Each existing pasture ranges from 5 to 50 acres each.Inside of the larger pastures, we will need temporary cross fencing for cell rotation as well. So, there are literally miles and miles of fences to be wired & energized.The fence chargers that I currently use are limited to ½ mile lines and will need to be upgraded to units with enough to kick to deter the pigs.Of course, we are hoping to get enough funding to afford the super zoomy solar powered chargers… but you have to catch a lot of sunshine to keep in pigs.

This is what happens when the electric fence fails... self serve!
This is what happens when the electric fence fails... self serve!

Water:

A fine cattle trough / pig jacuzzi.
A fine cattle trough / pig jacuzzi.

Much like the fencing, there are water troughs at each pasture, but the set up is not appropriate for pigs.They will look at troughs as Jacuzzis rather than a vessel for sipping to quench thirst. So, it is necessary to tie in to the water lines at each pasture in order to install the automatic water “lickers” that allow pigs to get a drink of fresh water whenever they need it without breaking anything.

Sweet piggies drinking happily out of automatic lickers
Sweet piggies drinking happily out of automatic lickers

Seeds, Plants, & Trees:

Red Amaranth
Red Amaranth

As we establish these fields in permaculture for the rotational grazing of not only pigs but cattle & chickens too, there's losts of seeds to purchase: Amaranth, Chuffa, Oats, Wheat, Rye, Barley, Rice, Clover, Chickory, Turnips, Mustards, etc. 

There used to be chuffas there... now there is a chubby - happy sow.
There used to be chuffas there... now there is a chubby - happy sow.

The establishment of perminent crops (nuts, berries, fruit, etc.) for the animals to self harvest is an essential part of to the permaculture aspect of this project.

Flax
Flax
Pigs in the collards...
Pigs in the collards...
Last year, I found a 4 leaf clover in our plantings!
Last year, I found a 4 leaf clover in our plantings!

Scale:

Since our pigs are being transitioned onto a more natural feed regiment, it will be essential to monitor their growth more proactively to ensure that they are getting everything they need and make any necessary adjustments to the ration in a timely manner.A moveable livestock scale is a fantastic tool for monitoring growth rates.

When I say "scale" I mean some bubble gum and twine with a digital readout.
When I say "scale" I mean some bubble gum and twine with a digital readout.

http://www.palletscales.net/version_1_load_bars.htm

This scale will also be helpful when raising pigs for restaurants.It is really challenging for us to look at a pig and “guess” visually how much that pig weighs with any amount of accuracy. Chefs plan menus around the amount of meat they expect to receive; ten pounds more or less can be detrimental for both the Chef and the Farmer.

Grinder:

We’ve been working with numerous nutritionists, seed suppliers, farmers, swine experts for three years in an effort to build a cost effective and nutritious feed ration that excludes GMO’s.The consensus is that building the ration with small grains (wheat, barley, oats, etc.) and oilseeds replaces the corn and soy so dominant in modern swine rations.

We ran 6 months worth of trials last year on our 20 acre farm and are ready to switch over the rest of the herd to the small grains as well.While pigs will gleefully consume small grains, their digestive tract is not designed to break them down very efficiently.Grains must be “cracked” or “broken” in order for pigs to utilize the starches in the grains.The availability of cracked grains in our area is very limited.During our trials, we malted the grains (soak the grains until they sprout and come out on their own).Malting is a very time consuming process – even on a small scale.

Malting a mixing wet Barley, Wheat, Oats, Flax, Kelp, Minerals, etc. daily is quite a chore!
Malting a mixing wet Barley, Wheat, Oats, Flax, Kelp, Minerals, etc. daily is quite a chore!

Malting all of the grains for the entire herd is not feasible.  In order to convert the entire herd to small grains, we will need to grind the grains on farm – and for that we’ll need to purchase a grinder.

Cheap Old Heavy Duty Truck for Hauling:

Not only are pigs really fun animals to live with due to their superior intellect, but pigs also have a place in history for being the greatest utilizers of what would otherwise be considered waste.

Tons of expired frozen butternut squash - heading to the farm rather than the landfill.
Tons of expired frozen butternut squash - heading to the farm rather than the landfill.

There are several micro brewers in the local area who offer up their spent grain to our farm.

These guys are totally making bacon - not just beer.
These guys are totally making bacon - not just beer.

Brewer’s grains are like a fermented vitamin pill wrapped in beer flavoring to a pig.  It’s not really a grain anymore, because the starches have been removed – but the protein, fiber, and gut bugs are worth their weight in gold to a growing pig.  Did I say weight?  Yeah.Brewer’s grains are super heavy to haul, because they’re wet.  Most brewers will have between 900 to 2,000 pounds worth of grains to be hauled off every week.That’s a ton of waste that can be kept out of the landfill; we can make bacon with it instead!

We also have a commitment with a large membership warehouse (which will remain nameless as I have not requested permission to use their name directly herein...but it starts with a "C" and ends with an "o" & they have recently gotten quite a bit of press for affording their employees the dignity of a living wage while their stock keeps climbing).  We pick up their cull vegetables. 

800 pounds worth of veggies destined to become bacon & fertilizer!
800 pounds worth of veggies destined to become bacon & fertilizer!
Nom, nom, nom!
Nom, nom, nom!
Perimeter breach.
Perimeter breach.
Mission complete... time to rest.
Mission complete... time to rest.
By evening, 5 pigs have reduced 800 pounds down to a slurry.  (Notice that they eat the tops off of asparagus and leave the stalk.  Yeah, they're that discerning... but they eat the stalks the next day)
By evening, 5 pigs have reduced 800 pounds down to a slurry. (Notice that they eat the tops off of asparagus and leave the stalk. Yeah, they're that discerning... but they eat the stalks the next day)
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They are one of the few retailers that still donates pre-dumpster items to farmers.  The nutrient profiles of all of these goodies are fantastic since much of the veggies carried by these guys are certified organic (remember that and get thee to this nameless membership warehouse that starts with a "C"). 

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The goodies are still mostly water though.  Water is heavy.  We pick up between 4 to 9 boxes of these veggies every week from just one store! Again, that’s many tons being kept out of the landfill.  Not only do we put the organic stuff to use, but also we repurpose as much of the plastics and cardboard as we can.  We recycle the rest.

When the pig gets to the pallets before we have sorted everything.... oh, what a mess is made by our self serve pig.
When the pig gets to the pallets before we have sorted everything.... oh, what a mess is made by our self serve pig.
These handy packages are great for growing microgreens... and the cardboard helps wick the water.
These handy packages are great for growing microgreens... and the cardboard helps wick the water.
They work like single serving greenhouses for seedlings too!
They work like single serving greenhouses for seedlings too!

Oh, and here's video proof that there IS a cracker jack toy down there somewhere!

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I’m not one of those farmers who drives around in a $60,000 diesel dually truck.I’m the hippie farmer who drives an old ’89 – 6 cyl truck, because it met the minimum requirements of what I needed when I bought it...  before brewer’s grains and veggies.

Good ol' girl !
Good ol' girl !

The old girl has done her best to get us through, but it’s time for her to take a break and finish out her days as a big wheel barrel for the farm rather than dragging tons upon tons of feedstuffs down the interstate.There are good, strong, old trucks to be had for a few thousand dollars that will fit our needs quite well.We’re not fancy at Nature Delivered… we’re practical.

Re-establishing a stable herd of traditional Southern Cross Pigs:

The Refinery has been very pleased with our Duroc sired pigs over the years.  As we need to essentially double production to meet the volume he has requested, we will need to bring more breeding stock onto the farm.  Over the years, we've raised a few Southern Cross pigs. Chef Greg and I have been discussing bringing back these Central Florida Traditional hogs for his new restaurant.

This is a fine example of the Southern Cross pig.
This is a fine example of the Southern Cross pig.

warning - pig farmer geek info below...

(I'm sorry for the so much info, but I just love these pigs, & having access to more land gives us an opportunity to bring back a type of pig that might otherwise be lost.)

When a person first considers bringing pigs onto their farm enterprise, the most fun decision is “What Breed” of hog to raise.  There are the conventional breeds: Yorkshire, Hampshire, Landrace, etc.  Many small farmers opt to go with Heritage breed hogs (Berkshire, Gloucester Old Spot, Tamworth, etc.).These are very fine breeds, but they did not flourish in confinement, so their numbers have dwindled – some nearly to extinction.  Small farmers are bringing many of these formally recognized breeds back into favor with niche marketing and conservation efforts via breed registries.

Every breed of hog has been developed by years, decades, even centuries of selective breeding (including inbreeding and linebreeding). Pigs displaying desired traits were the ones retained for breeding, but those traits were based on the needs of the farmers in the a given area: Glouchester Old Spot developed out of the pigs that produced the best meat and fat cover while gleaning orchards – hence why they are considered an “orchard pig”.  More recently, breeds like the Hereford Pig have been developed by combining pigs from distinct breeds in order to produce a unified result.The Hereford did not exist until the 1902 when a single farmer, R.U. Webber, crossed his Durocs and Chester Whites and ended up with a pig that had similar markings to Hereford cattle while retaining the best traits of the breeds used to create it.Oddly enough none of the existing Hereford Pigs trace back to the pigs from Mr. Webbers farm.In the 1920’s, a new deliberate line of Hereford pigs was developed by a group of farmers using Duroc and Poland China pigs.All registered Hereford pigs trace back to the original 100 pigs that this group produced.The Hereford pig was cool enough to get noticed, and a breed registry was created and maintained.Similar registries exist for all recognized breeds.

There have been many breed lines of pigs developed by farmers that have not merited a breed registry.Though the pigs may be very distinctive, their uses may be so specific to the region where they were developed that the pig was of little value elsewhere.What I call the Southern Cross is one of the most distinctive regional breeds.These “red mulefooted wattled hogs” could once be found on old farmsteads throughout Central Florida but are all but gone now.

Mulefeet...so cute.
Mulefeet...so cute.

Back in the free range days, farmers believed that a mule footed hog (lacking a cloven hoof) couldn’t be tracked by dogs since the pigs do not possess the scent gland between the toes.  Therefore, a farmer who had mulefoots did not have to worry about people stealing their hogs.So, any pig that retained the mulefoot was held back for breeding.  Furthermore, there was a belief that a mulefooted hog was immune to hog cholera.  When science dispelled the cholera myth, the mulefoots fell out of favor.

The red hair of these hogs protects them from the damaging effects of the Florida sun and helps conceal the pigs from predators and hunters alike.Hunters in Florida today still refer to them as the “illusive red hog” and consider them to be quite the prize.Long ago farmers figured out that red hogs produce a darker and more marbled meat than the white hogs used in commercial production.Since these pigs are so well adapted to the area, they are more efficient foragers than the breeds that were developed in the Midwest that are more dependent upon large grains like corn and soy.These hogs thrive just foraging on underbrush and acorns – and that means less GMO’s, less fuel to transport corn, and an all around more economical animal.

Over the years, farmers brought in outside stock to reinforce their breedlines.Some farmers added Tamworths, others Red Wattles, and often these pigs would be crossed with wild pigs.The result is a consistently red pig with upright ears, a square yet tapered loin, long legs, thick bacon, excellent fat cover, wattles, and mule feet.  The Southern Cross also has a very distinctive flavor.  The few that we've raised over the years have received rave reviews for their meat quality and fantastic fat distribution.  They are as distinctive as any other breed that I’ve seen.Their origins have not been recorded, but they share a rich history with the farmers of Central Florida.

 We are hoping  to rebuild a herd of these pigs using what stock is still available and crossing it with fresh Mulefoot, Red Wattle, and Tamworth stock to counterbalance the more recent line breeding that is becoming evident in the available Red Mulefoots in the area.With enough luck, perhaps these pigs will catch the attention of the Breed Conservancies and can also enjoy the benefits of conservation.

Cuter than "Babe" in my opinion.
Cuter than "Babe" in my opinion.

Nature Delivered is in the beginning stages of recreating this herd of traditional Central Florida pigs that have been an integral part of our Southern traditional foods.  Through Kickstarter funding, we're hoping to secure as much breeding stock as we can find. 

Thank You for your support!

I hope that you find yourself compelled to support our expansion project.  Even if you don't support our project, I hope that just reading through this has changed your view of the humble pig. 

Many of the rewards being offered to donors will be reproductions of works artistic in nature and will be representative of our pigs.  There will also be items produced with materials generated by our farm.  These items will be delivered promptly. 

Original works of art will take a little more time.  We plan to get them to you long before the deadline, but please be patient as we create truly unique pig inspired items for you to enjoy for many years to come.

Little hand made sculptures of our pigs produced by the farmer's own hand.
Little hand made sculptures of our pigs produced by the farmer's own hand.

Other rewards that involve the products produced by this kickstarter - namely pork - will take longer, because it takes at least 6 months to raise a pig.  There has been a tremendous amount of support from chefs who have donated their time, expertise, and facilities to help us offer great rewards that involve dinners at award winning restaurants as well.  Please consider enjoying the fruits of our labor.... We're in this together.

I'm so thankful to everyone who has pitched in on this expansion effort.  It takes a village to raise a pig...  but, there will be bacon for the village.

I noticed that there were a lot of photos of Godiva being naughty in this project description.  She may be our escape artist and fairly naughty, but she is also the sweetest and most loving doll of a pig.  Thought I should include a picture of her being g
I noticed that there were a lot of photos of Godiva being naughty in this project description. She may be our escape artist and fairly naughty, but she is also the sweetest and most loving doll of a pig. Thought I should include a picture of her being g

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

We work with living systems rather than manufacturing widgets. Every success is dependent upon Mother Nature herself. Sometimes she smiles on our efforts, sometimes she rains on them. And, sometimes she stands back and laughs, and laughs, and laughs. But, over the years, we've learned to roll with the punches and make adjustments in order to meet our production deadlines. If we need 8 pigs, we will hold back 10... just in case. We also have a strong network of farmers ready and willing to lend a hand, a tractor, or a tool when needed. Farming isn't easy, but it is totally worth it.

FAQ

Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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    Hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    Unframed 5"X7" reproduction of a transparent watercolor of our pigs painted by professional wildlife artist Ellen Snyder (www.ellensnyder.com) who just happens to be the Mother of the farmer. You will also receive a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    1 Pound of random Nature Delivered Pork (Fresh chops, kabobs, or country ribs etc. processed under USDA inspection, vacuum sealed, & frozen). You will also receive a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    Re-purposed beer barley bag or feed bag transformed into a tote by the farmer's daughter Victoria. You will also receive a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    2 Pounds of random Nature Delivered Pork (Fresh chops, kabobs, or country ribs etc. processed under USDA inspection, vacuum sealed, & frozen). You will also receive a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    1 Pounds of random Nature Delivered Pork (Fresh chops, kabobs, or country ribs etc. processed under USDA inspection, vacuum sealed, & frozen) and a re-purposed beer barley bag or feed bag transformed into a tote by the farmer's daughter Victoria. You will also receive a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    Per the request of several potential supporters, we are adding a Mini Bacon Reward: All Natural - Nitrate Free Nature Delivered BACON: The Duct Tape of Food. There's approximately 15 pounds of bacon per each 240 pound pig. Bacon is coveted not just for being the tastiest bit but for the limited supply. 1 pound of thick sliced slow hickory smoked bacon and a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    1 Pound of Gourmet Sausage & 2 pounds of random Nature Delivered Pork (Fresh chops, kabobs, or country ribs etc. processed under USDA inspection, vacuum sealed, & frozen) and a re-purposed beer barley bag or feed bag transformed into a tote by the farmer's daughter Victoria. You will also receive a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    Farm Tour - Get out of the city for the afternoon and breath in some fresh Country air.. Come on down to the farm and see what your support has made possible. Meet our sows, hand out some snacks, give some belly rubs, perhaps even hold a baby pig. Please keep in mind that Nature Delivered is a working farm specifically designed for raising food producing animals. That being said, there are sharp things, holes, poo, sticks, and all sorts of bits to get stuck on, poked with, or fall into. There will be a release of liability in order to gain access to the property.... you know, legal blah, blah, blah, yadda, yadda. The important part is that you know how grateful we are for your support.

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    The Smokehouse Reward: All Natural - Nitrate Free Nature Delivered Pork slow smoked with natural hickory for an amazing flavor & texture. You will receive 1 pound of smoked chops & 1 pound of Canadian Bacon, and a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    1 Pound of Sausage, 1 pound of Smoked Sausage & 2 pounds of random Nature Delivered Pork (Fresh chops, kabobs, or country ribs etc. processed under USDA inspection, vacuum sealed, & frozen). Pig remarked (sort of) framed reproduction. We'll take the 5"X7" reproduction of a transparent watercolor of our pigs painted by professional wildlife artist Ellen Snyder (www.ellensnyder.com) and cut a lovely mat for it - then we are going to give that mat to our baby pigs armed with edible paints. Once they finish "remarking" the mat, we'll seal it all up under glass in an 8"x10" frame. You will also receive a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    The Bacon Reward: All Natural - Nitrate Free Nature Delivered BACON: The Duct Tape of Food. There's approximately 15 pounds of bacon per each 240 pound pig. Bacon is coveted not just for being the tastiest bit but for the limited supply. This is the only donation level that will receive bacon. You will receive 3 pounds of thick sliced slow hickory smoked bacon, a personalized Certificate of Appreciation proclaiming "I got the Bacon!" and a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    Sausage, Sausage, Sausage: 1# of loose patty style breakfast sausage, 1# of loose patty style Campfire Hot Sausage, 1# Pennsylvania Dutch loose patty style Sausage, 1# Linked Smoked Polish Sausage, & 1# large diameter Hot Dogs. You will also receive a re-purposed beer barley bag or feed bag transformed into a tote by the farmer's daughter Victoria and a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    Meatless Pig Love: Small original pig sculpture hand molded and carved by the farmer herself. You'll also receive an 8X10 framed - pig remarked reproduction of the transparent watercolor of the pigs & a custom Christmas Bulb with a Super cute pig hand painted on it both by Ellen Snyder (www.ellensnyder.com). (We would let the pigs help with remarking these too, but they are glass and look way too much like a big skittle). You'll get the grain bag tote made by the farmer's daughter and a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    Pizza & a Movie night in beautiful Safety Harbor at Pizzeria Gregario's (https://www.facebook.com/PizzeriaGregario?fref=ts). (We hope that you would get something with Nature Delivered pork on it, but you can get whatever you like - not to exceed $30). Ask Chef Greg Seymour to pair your pizza with some locally brewed beer (you have to pay for your own beer), because wood fired pizza and a movie will likely require beer. You will also receive a tote bag & a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    Farm to Fork Dinner at Nature Delivered Farm. (Details still in the works - and depends on attendance). Enjoy a chef prepared meal out at the farm. Enjoy the bounty of our harvest - made possible with your support. Meal to be created out of meats, veggies, eggs, wild edibles, etc. all grown on our farm.

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    Porky Goodness Sampler: 10 Pounds of random Nature Delivered Pork (Fresh chops, kabobs, or country ribs etc. processed under USDA inspection, vacuum sealed, & frozen), 1# Smoked Canadian Bacon, 1# of loose patty style breakfast sausage, 1# Smoked Sausage. You will also receive a tote bag & a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm kissed by one of our baby pigs.

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    Enjoy some Nature Delivered Pork at the Pearl in the Grove (www.pearlinthegrove.com/) or their new Local Gastropub opening in Jan 2014. (We hope that you would get the pork, but you can get whatever you like - not to exceed $50). You will also receive a tote bag & a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm.

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    The Whole Hog! Yeah, you can have a traditional approximately 50 pound whole BBQ hog from Nature Delivered Farm. This reward will be available for your Spring Celebrations - we will work with you on your schedule to be sure that you have a fantastically fresh pig that has never been frozen. (On Farm Pickup. We may be able to ship your pig, but shipping will be at additional cost.) You will also receive a hand written Thank You from Nature Delivered Farm.

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    Name that Sow: Since we are recreating the Southern Cross, we will be bringing in fresh breeding stock. Breeder pigs come to us as babies and stay with us for many years. While all of our pigs are loved, breeder pigs are special and get extra handling and treats. By choosing this donation, you will become a part of the family & receive. No animal enjoys life as much as a pig; there will be lots of silly stories along the way. We'll send you pictures and updates about the girl's progress as she develops. She will grow and play freely for 10 months before she meets the love of her life and begins her work. She will be a year old before she has her first litter of pigs. But that first litter doesn't make her a sow - it's the trial run. After she has nursed her first litter of pigs, bred back, and had her second litter - then we will truly know what her mothering skills and average litter size will be. At that point, she will join the ranks as a sow. She will carry the name you her which will establish the theme of the names for all of the babies she will have throughout her life (which can be over 100 pigs). Please try to choose a name that exemplifies fertility, because pigs tend to live up to their names. You will be welcome to come by and meet her some time - perhaps even witness her giving birth. This is a great way to be a part of the farming experience (without getting a whole lot of poo on your shoes). You will also receive a framed photo of your pig with a mat remarked by her personally and hand written Thank You kissed by your girl.

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  • Pledge $500 or more
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    Name that Boar: We will also need two very special boars to sire the Southern Cross pigs. Boars represent half of the genetics of the many pigs that they will sire and have a tremendous influence upon the entire herd. Our current boar has produced nearly 300 beautiful 80% Duroc pigs, before he reached 3 years of age. The boars will also come to us as babies, and just like the future sows, these guys will take extra handling to ensure that they have a firm bond with us and trust for the safety of both humans and swine on the farm. By choosing this donation, you will become a part of the family. We'll send you pictures and updates about his progress. He will start off as a 20 pound little bundle of love and develop into a virile and strapping lad of 240 pounds before he is 6 months old and begins his work. His first sons and daughters will be born when he is roughly 10 months old. And, since a boar is able to service many sows, there will be lots of cute baby pictures to share from there out. Our goal of recreating the Red Wattled Mulefoots means there will be exciting finds in his offspring - daughters displaying the desired traits he passes along will become future sows. Like the sows, his name will influence the names of his offspring. If we are successful in establishing a proper herd book, many years from now breeders will make reference to your namesake boar as the foundation stock. Similar to the girls, please try to choose a name that exemplifies virility yet represents a calm paternal demeanor. (Who knows what could happen if a boar was named "Walter White" from Breaking Bad. Hee Hee Not sure I'd be comfy meeting him in a dark ally). You will be welcome to come by and meet him some time - perhaps even witness one of his best girlfriends giving birth. This is a great way to be a part of the farming experience (without getting a whole lot of poo on your shoes). You will also receive a framed photo of your pig with a mat remarked by him personally and hand written Thank You kissed by your little man.

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  • Pledge $1,000 or more
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    Celebrate the completion of our farm expansion by breaking bread with the farmer at the restaurant that launched a 1,000 pigs (ok, not 1,000 - but it sounds good). Share a very special Chef selected dinner at the newly opened Fodder & Shine (or the Refinery). Indulge in masterfully prepared dishes created just for you by James Beard Nominated Chef Greg Baker. You will also receive an original clay sculpture created by the farmer, a framed original transparent watercolor of our pigs painted by Ellen Snyder with a pig remarked mat and a Christmas Bulb with a pig hand painted on it and a special message of thanks for your generous contribution to our 2014 expansion. You'll also get the beer barley tote bag produced by the farmer's daughter Victoria, a framed Certificate of Appreciation, a hand written Thank You kissed by our baby pigs, as well as some take home pork (there may even be bacon).

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    Ships within the US only
  • Pledge $3,000 or more
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    Want a great weekend getaway in the country? Come on out to the farm for a two day one night experience that you are sure to never forget. You'll get the chance to see all of the amazing changes that these kickstarter gifts have made possible. You'll rub pig bellies, hand out snacks, watch the little ones frolic in the lush fields, etc. You'll see Carnes Batten's beautiful cattle grazing leisurely in fields that have been made more fertile by your gifts. We'll ride horses around 200 acres of oak hammocks, fields, forests, and swamps. Your meals will be farm fresh (and I mean eggs laid that very morning, greens picked and washed just before sinking into the pot, etc.). Depending on how many donors choose this level of donation, we may have a BBQ under the stars prepared by one of our favorite Chefs or a real Cowboy. Camping would be a great way to really immerse yourself in the moment, but there are nearby hotels and B&B's if camping is just a tad too rustic for you. We will schedule the weekend to fit Donor's needs. April is probably the most beautiful time at the farm; Spring is in full swing, but the rains are still reasonably light. This is our little way of thanking you for a really big gift - and the weekend is about YOU. If there's something that I haven't mentioned herein, please let us know before we set everything in stone. We will try to accommodate your requests (as long as it's legal, moral, and ethically acceptable). Please keep in mind that Nature Delivered is a working farm specifically designed for raising food producing animals. That being said, there are sharp things, holes, poo, sticks, and all sorts of bits to get stuck on, poked with, or fall into (especially on horseback). There will be a release of liability in order to gain access to the property.... you know, legal blah, blah, blah, yadda, yadda. The important part is that you know how grateful we are for your support.

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Funding period

- (30 days)