Jan 052015

Two brothers (farmers) in Central New York state are going to try to survive the year eating only food that they produce, forage or hunt. It’s an interesting experiment and one that you can follow on their blog. They have allowed themselves some exceptions:

  1. “Salt and pepper are allowed.
  2. Vitamins and seaweed are allowed.
  3. Barter is allowed, particularly if the item we’re trading for is produced by the other barterer.
  4. Gifts of food, so long as the giver grew them him/herself, are allowed.
  5. Seasoning added by the butcher to meat we raised e.g. bacon and ham, is allowed.
  6. Cider (mostly hard) made from apples we picked at a nearby farm is allowed. We paid for the apples as it was a u-pick operation. The wild apple crop in 2014 was very poor, so we made an exception about purchasing food for those apples. Plus, we still put in all the labor gathering them and Garth did all the labor fermenting the cider.
  7. (They will quit) if (they) lose 15% of (their) starting body weight.”

The last caveat is interesting and might be a bit conservative although from the photos on their website they seem to be pretty lean to start with. However, I will note from my own personal experience that when I experimented with a radical diet (raw food) for a full year I lost 37 lbs (thought gained back about 20 for a net loss of more than 15).

These guys are going to blog about it, of course, and it should be interesting. If you want to follow  their progress (or lack of it) you can sign up with blog trotter and you’ll get an email when they make new posts.

With a farm, the ability to barter and an omnivore’s diet they should succeed. After all, it’s been done before by generations of people who lived on self-sufficiency farms. In our day and age, it’s quite radical.


  2 Responses to “A Self-Sufficiency Experiment”

  1. Awesome! Thanks for sharing this, Randy! Given their circumstances, sounds like it should be pretty doable.

  2. This is gonna be good. Also, I’ve always wondered how to get blogs to my email inbox when there is no email entry space provided… Now I know! Blog trotter! Thanks!

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