Chicken Poop for the Soul: Book Review

 In Food, Permaculture Projects, Why Permaculture?

This book review was written by Michelle Avis

A friend handed me this book as I was visiting her last month. “You’ll enjoy this” she said, “kinda like Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, but in Canada.” I loved the name of the book and despite the fact I had other books on my next-to-read list, as we drove home I started the first page… and later found myself trying to pick the book up everytime I had a chance (which isn’t often when you have a 9 month old!).

Author Kristeva Dowling & her husband return to her homeland of Canada after living many years in New Zealand. She is a city gal, born & raised, but they purchase an acreage in the Bella Coola Valley, in Western British Columbia, and start their little project: designing a permaculture-inspired homestead in attempt to provide for 100 percent of their food needs.

Kristeva tells the true story of their successes, trials and learnings. Funny tales of getting dogs, ducks, goats, and chickens. How to handle baby chick poopy-bum, planning her garden for self-sufficiency, and fascinating discussions of GMO’s, seed saving, preserving and hunting – including her encounters with cougars and bears.

The chapter on milk and Canadian raw milk politics might make your blood boil and her discussion of restrictions on farm-gate sales paint a clear picture of how legislative barriers are causing the demise of the family farm and small farm communities.

The lesson – reconnect with your food. Start growing something, even if you live in the city. Get to know a farmer. Start supporting these small farmers with your purchasing decisions. This book is the perfect gift for that friend who wants to leave the city and return to a simpler life – actually, let me expand that – this it is the perfect gift for anyone who eats food.

-Michelle Avis

 

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