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Pick Your Poison

"Ag worker housing. Better zoning. A local USDA processing plant, and a commercial canning facility." The wishes flew around the farmer's roundtable meeting at the local Grange tonight.

For the most part, I kept my mouth shut. Much of what I want to sell is illegal--not unethical, mind you, but illegal. I can't sell my neighbor a frozen rabbit. I can't take bags of popcorn kernels to the market without a processor's license. Hawthorn Farm bulges awkwardly at the edge of being too big for home use, but too small to benefit from economies of scale. I filled my Washington State Department of Agriculture guide with bookmarks, trying to figure out how to keep a farm afloat with a minimum of paperwork. What can I reasonably produce and sell without running afoul of authorities? Without investing $70,000 in a goat milking parlor? Figgy Pudding's not going to make enough milk in her whole life to pay that back.

Regulations can be helpful. Plenty of people get sick from improper food, regulated or not. It's just odd to me that I can drive to town and buy marijuana, cigarettes, a case of booze, and an armful of guns. But I'd better not sell a frozen rabbit processed in our backyard.

The popcorn in question... Because it's more photogenic than a frozen rabbit. Both are delicious!

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