My degree is in English Literature with Theology and Religious Studies and I don’t think I ever thought I would be able to apply any of this to farming-apart from writing about it.
How wrong I was. The religious studies part has come in very handy since marrying a farmer.
It’s not just turkey farmers who are preparing all year for Christmas.
For all major world religions, having family meals is also a big part of the feast.
Just think of the lamb eaten by Christians at Easter. The fish on Fridays.
Some feasts in Islam require the sacrifice of an animal-a sheep, cow or goat.In many countries families sacrifice the animal themselves but in Britain, animals must be taken to abattoirs.
For farmers, it is worth marking religious festivals on their calendars as the price of meet goes up just before, during and sometimes after religious events.
So before religious holidays, you will find us sorting out sheep to take to market to make sure there is enough for all the religions in the North West of England to help celebrate their special day.
We will do the same in December for Jewish Passover and even for the Christians who want a break from turkey at Christmas.
It’s more technical than you think this farming malarkey. If he took the lambs in the week after, the price would be much lower.
So next time you sit down to celebrate a religious festival with your family, don’t forget to say a little prayer for the farmer who helped rear the food.