In 1996, I returned from college to my family's farm and found it in complete shambles. My parents had given up on ever making a profit from farming, and had taken jobs in the city to make ends meet. Our crops of corn and cattle barely covered our production costs, and the land didn't generate enough profit for us to even buy our own food. Our family farm, just like thousands of others across the country, was undeniably broken.
Now, nearly 20 years later, we've turned our farm around. We raise grass-finished beef, and sell it directly to customers at farmers' markets. Because I sell my food directly to the public, I'm constantly asked: "Why is organic food so expensive?" This is an understandable question, especially because 'conventional' beef at the grocery stores is so much cheaper by comparison. But in order to understand why one type of beef is more 'expensive,' we should first examine why the other meat is so 'cheap.'