STONE COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Big farms across America use all kinds of chemicals, from growth hormones to antibiotics, on beef, pork and chicken. More and more people are discovering how unhealthy and dangerous these additives are.
Small farms are popping up where the emphasis is on raising livestock using a natural, chemical free approach.
Adam and Michelle Pickering own Pump Branch Farm in Stone County. It's pasture raised poultry, or chicken, farming on a small scale. Unlike the giant chicken producers, these birds are raised in a natural, chemical free environment.
"It's a good feeling to come out here and make these birds happy every morning. It's more about what's not in it. Everything that is in our chicken you can pronounce. There are no extra ingredients," said Adam.
That means no antibiotics, hormones or genetically modified feed. The birds have room to roam, which eliminates stress. The Pickerings provide the poultry with fresh, waste free grass every day.
"We move our shelters every morning. That gives them new grass to eat, and they're away from yesterdays waste," Adam said.
The Pickerings also raise pigs on Pump Branch Farm. The pigs are allowed to roam and enjoy chemical free feed and land.
The initial goal was to raise food just for their family. Now, they sell pasture raised poultry on their web site http://www.pumpbranchfarm.com/.
More and more folks are discovering local, pure farms are a better alternative to big agri-business and grocery store chains.
"People are more aware of what they're eating. They want to become closer to their food. Eating local is becoming more important to people," said Adam.