Llano Seco Rancho products are undergoing a noticeable change. Llano Seco is transitioning their herd away from being USDA certified organic. While we at the Co-op obviously strive to carry as many organic products as possible, we understand the reasons why Llano Seco have made their decision, and will continue carrying their products.
The first question we all had upon hearing the news was, of course, “Why? Why drop the organic label?”. Two primary reasons:
- 1) Pig health. The organic requirements prevented Llano Seco from treating their herd with “dewormer” to keep the pigs’ digestive systems free of parasites. Pigs, because of their social nature and proclivity for muck, have a tendency to acquire parasites. Llano Seco will now be able to treat their pigs for parasites. However, the pigs will still not be treated with anti-biotics.
- 2) Price. The recent drought has caused the price of organic feed to rise dramatically. Llano Seco wants to try and keep their products affordable to as many people as possible, so they are switching to feed which is not certified organic. The pigs’ feed will remain GMO-free and vegetarian.
The above mentioned changes precipitated the loss of the USDA Organic label. Llano Seco have partnered with the Global Animal Partnership to independently verify that their herds are still being raised in the best possible conditions. Llano Seco’s dedication to animal welfare and environmental stewardship preceded their USDA certification, and the transition away from that labeling does not affect their core values in the slightest. We are proud to carry local, sustainably produced meats from Llano Seco.
If you have any questions or concerns about Llano Seco products, do not hesitate to ask us here at the store. Llano Seco has a very helpful information sheet about the change here.