April 2023 Newsletter

So done with snow

That’s right. Snow! Last week, the first week of Easter, we were finishing up maple syrup and cutting wood, sweating and getting our first sunburn of the summer as the temperature hit 27 degrees Celsius. Some of us even took advantage of the unseasonable heat to try for a rare, April swim in the river! (Still bone chilling cold – go figure – there were snowbanks in some spots less than a week ago.)

So that is the wonder and beauty of living in Southwestern Ontario. Our weather is – to quote Forrest Gump – “like a box of chocolates… you never know what you’re going to get”. Think of how boring it would be to live in Dallas or Dubai. What would we complain – I mean talk – about?

Mark feeding a round bale on one of the warmest days of the year so far.
Can you believe these chicks are moving outside already? The first batch will be ready in June.

Spread the news

From the beginning of Zettel Family Farms entry into the direct to consumer, home delivery business, we have tried to communicate the core values of our farming philosophy, and have relied on that message to attract people who share our ideals. We are not clever marketing specialists or experts in the use of social media. We wonder at each new customer who makes an order and assume that many people hear about our products from family or friends who are believers in the merit of organic, pasture-based, local meat.

We would like to encourage you, our faithful customers, to continue to help us out. You can share our newsletter, or hang on to the shiny brochure that is in your box and pass it on, or just tell your friends. Last month, we explained about the confusion in the marketplace over competing claims (link). In discussion about how to expand our sales, we realized that most of us are bombarded with so many messages that we tend to tune out anyone who tries to sell us anything. We are far more likely to consider trying something different if we hear about it from a personal contact – someone we know who shares with us their good experience. So if you like what we do – spread the news!

Our sale items

When something goes wrong – tell us!

We are learning every day about all the things that can go wrong in an operation that begins with the soil, involves feeding and care of 4 different species of animals from gestation to maturity, and then turns those animals into consumer ready products and delivers them to your homes. We make mistakes, as do the partners who support our operation. We get lots of positive feedback about the taste and texture of our pasture based organic meats. People are generally very pleased with what we do, but sometimes things go wrong, and when they do, we need to hear about it! Please let us know so we can correct our mistakes and make it right with you.

SAVE THE DATE: Farm Tour and Barbecue

1pm to 6pm, on Sunday, July 16, 2023

We are excited to share some preliminary details about our farm tour, hosted together with Starseed Acres! The owners, Kevin and Lauren Voisin, have a beautiful market garden and CSA just west of Walkerton and a few concessions away from Zettel Family Farms. We have partnered with them to supply their market store with a selection of our meat products, and we are pleased to recommend them to those looking for vegetables grown with the same values that we ourselves live by.

Customers! Watch for your free family voucher in your email in the coming weeks!

From the Starseed Acres Facebook page: “We believe we are nature ourselves & stewards for our Earth. Our goal is to create an ecosystem where nature takes care of it all – the soil, the bugs, the microbiome, the birds & creatures and the plants all work together in harmony. We do not spray or till our land as we believe this is detrimental to our health and our soil.” Hopefully this reminds you of the beliefs and values of Zettel Family Farms – you can see why this makes a great friendship.

The day will include:

  • A tour of Starseed Acres’ market garden
  • A tour of “the home farm” at Zettel Family Farms, where we raise our pigs, pasture beef cattle and raise turkeys
  • A barbecue, featuring ZFF burgers and sausage, and seasonal veggies/salads from Starseed Acres
  • Barbecue will be held at the Chepstow Lions Park and Pavilion, 455 Chepstow Rd. Chepstow, ON

Our customers will be getting a FAMILY VOUCHER to attend this event for free! Please keep the date open and plan to attend the tour and barbecue! Additional passes

Zettel Family News – Still Growing

Don’t worry, we know storks don’t bring the babies.

On March 17 th we welcomed Robert Dennis Brooks, the youngest of Peggie and Dave’s clan, who upon his arrival was already an uncle to Dominic Roberts, born April 15 th 2022 to Drew and Olivia. Olivia is Robbie’s oldest sister. Just one month later Dominic’s sister, Alice Grace come into the world on her 1 year old brother’s birthday, which was also Great Gran and Great Grampa’s (Ted and Christine’s) 45th wedding anniversary. (If you can’t follow any of that, just ignore it) Christine and I are wondering what to make of what seems like a never ending series of improbable coincidences in the lives of our descendants:

  • We have one grandchild and two great grandchildren born on our wedding
  • Two families have children born on the same day one year apart ; Dominic
    and Alice – April 15, 2022 and 2023 – and Tessa and Sophie Zettel, born July
    28 th , 2008 and 2009.
  • Our daughter Marie and her husband Jason Taylor have 3 sets of twins.
  • We had two grandchildren born in one day on May 14, 2009. Rowen Zettel
    and Maggie Brooks.

Video – God has a sense of humour

My sister Kathie took this video of a mother possum making its way with 8 babies on its back, through the quiet residential area on Kitchener’s St. Jerome’s crescent. What can you say? That this ridiculously funny mode of transportation evolved out of eons of natural selection? Hmmm. Doesn’t sound quite right. I think it more accurate to conclude that God has a sense of humour.

(The image links to the YouTube video. It’s worth the watch!)

Posted in Education, Newsletters.