Digest – Features: Abattoir ambitions, grain stampede, farming the bluefin

starLocally raised, locally slaughtered: Farmer Cheryl Ouellette raises pigs, cattle, chickens and ducks on her Summit farm in Pierce County, WA, but she has to drive them all over to be slaughtered. Which is why she's on fire to get a mobile abattoir built — and with all the interest she's sparked, just might succeed. (The News Tribune)

The globalized diet: Farmers are in the unusual position of not knowing what to plant, because all prices for grains are so high. Why? "Everyone wants to eat like an American on this globe…But if they do, we’re going to need another two or three globes.” (New York Times)

Hormone injections for tuna?: The mighty bluefin tuna has been overfished to the point of collapse, and yet ever more sushi fans clamor for it. What to do? Why, figure out how to farm-raise these 1,000 pound beauties, which require up to 12 years to reach sexual maturity, and often won't inside a cage. But a European Union project thinks it sees hope, of the kind Ethicurean readers should be familiar with: it used drug implants to get bluefin to produce fertilized eggs in captivity. (Scienceline)

Fight the pork power: University of North Carolina students have decided to change their school's reliance on Smithfield, aka the Death Star of Pork. They held a free barbecue and invited some speakers whose stories the other students wouldn't soon forget: workers from the Smithfield's Tar Heel plant, and residents of the predominantly African-American area where those nearly 2.2 million hogs are raised each year. (Grist)

A victim of its own success: Russ Parsons reports that the Wednesday Santa Monica Farmers' Market is metamorphosing from a farmers market to "a kind of boutique wholesale operation." As much as half of some stands gets bought by national produce companies, and chefs feel dissed. (Los Angeles Times)

And then the scales fell from their eyes: The plight of No Catch, a much-hailed, UK sustainable aquaculture endeavor, has led to growing fears that this experiment in environmentally conscious cod farming may be about to end. (The Guardian)

Shoots, eats, and leaves: Why hunting is on the decline across the nation, and how states are trying bolster "this rural tradition." Maybe they'd have better luck if they stopped calling it a "sport" and called it a rite of locavore passage... (New York Times)

Watching your waste line: Riding along with Mike Misiti, a dedicated driver for the Greater Chicago Food Depository, which feeds about 90,000 hungry people a week and last year distributed 40 million pounds of food. (Chicago Tribune)

The SOLE of high tech: In an ironic historic twist, the same high-tech economy that kicked out farmers from Silicon Valley is now throwing the remaining growers a lifeline. And a disgraced tech CEO has started a new life as a farmer. (Metroactive)

The grass is way greener in MD: The Maryland Grazer's Network is a new farmer-to-farmer mentoring program set up to promote rotational grazing. (Baltimore Sun)

starWooly history: We've been getting curious about Heath Putnam, the Mangalitsa hog entrepreneur and entertaining Wooly Pigs blogger, so we enjoyed this 2007 story on how he started his "best pork in the U.S." business. (SpokesmanReview)

Dairy cows not big fans of daylight-savings time (SF Chronicle)

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