7.28.20

The thing about a non-toxic lifestyle is that once you start making changes in one area, the wish for clean ingredients and materials begins to creep into every area of your life. Bethany McDaniel is the founder of Primally Pure, a natural skincare brand she started shortly after her family spontaneously started a ‘beyond organic’ livestock farm here in Southern California (more on the farm later this week!). 

While she’s certainly not the first farmer’s wife in California’s history to begin dabbling with herbs and oils, we think what she’s doing with her brand — and her farm — are incredibly special. We asked Mc Daniel to join our On the Farm with… series and she didn’t disapoint… 

My Daily Work Routine Is…
A few years ago when I lived on my family’s farm, Primal Pastures, my work day consisted of a fulfilling combination of time outdoors with our animals and time making my skincare products in the kitchen of our small farmhouse.

Over the last couple of years as my focus has narrowed in on Primally Pure more closely, I still wake up at the crack of dawn and use that time to plan my workday and jot down some goals, intentions and things like that. When my kids wake up, it’s all about spending time with them until their sitter arrives. At that point, I head into the office for the day. My work day usually consists of meeting with various people on my team, working with our in-house herbalist on new product formulations, creating content, and often times interviewing candidates for open positions.

The Easiest Things I Grow/ Raise Are…
Our family farm is a “beyond organic” livestock farm that raises poultry, beef, lamb and pork. We’re most well-known for raising chicken and even though I wouldn’t say it’s easy to raise birds the way we do (outside on pasture 24/7), we have a great system in place and have developed so many efficiencies over the years that allow us to be really successful in this extremely rare type of chicken farming.

The Hardest Part of My Day Is…
When something doesn’t go as planned in the process of developing a new natural skincare formula or even making an existing recipe. Natural ingredients aren’t always easy to work with, as they can vary from batch to batch and crop to crop.

There’s always a solution, but it usually takes quite a bit of critical thinking to figure out what that is.

The Most Magical Part of My Day Is…
Stepping into my home when the workday is done and enjoying a meal with my husband and kids!

Lunch Is Usually…
A hearty salad with greens, beets, our own chicken, olive oil, and lemon.

A Day Never Goes By Without…
Taking a cold shower! I’m an avid follower of Wim Hof – his breathing and cold therapy techniques have changed my life!

When The Sun Sets, I End My Day By…
Tucking my kiddos in for the night and picking up a book or scripture to read.

The Most Unusual Thing That Happens on a Farm Is…
We’re “weird” because we move every single animal to fresh organic pasture every single day. It’s our way of replicating and respecting nature. This ancient process gives our animals clean food, clean bedding, fresh air, and plenty of space to roam. It’s also the best chore on the farm – you can literally feel the happy energy and excitement for them to find that clover, wildflower, or grasshopper!

I Wish People Understood…
The difference between factory-farmed meat and pasture-raised meat. Meat has gotten a bad rap over the years because CAFO (confined animal feeding operation) meat is so terrible for our health and for the environment.

“Pasture-raised meat is actually worlds apart in terms of having a more impressive nutrient profile without the toxins that are prevalent in animals raised inside and fed an unnatural feed. Raising animals outside on grass actually helps to regenerate the planet and reverse climate change by rebuilding soil organic matter and restoring soil biodiversity, resulting in carbon drawdown.”

Purchasing From A Farmers Market is Important Because…
It’s tough to really know what you’re getting at the grocery store, especially with animal products. People are still shocked when I tell them that “cage free” and “free range” labels mean almost nothing. Having a personal relationship with the farm you’re purchasing from is the way to go, and visiting the farm is even better!

One Thing Most People Don’t Know About A Farmer’s Life Is…
I think people see the aspirational side of farming a lot of times, but not necessarily all of the hard times. Especially when we were starting out (with no farming experience whatsoever), there were so many unforeseen problems that came up almost daily. We’ve dealt with predators, animals escaping, equipment issues and so many other things!

We View Our Role in The Community As…
We started the farm because we couldn’t find a consistent source of animal products that met our standards for health and raising animals in a humane way that gives back to the environment. There’s a phrase “pay the farmer now or pay the doctor later” which couldn’t be more true. What we put into our bodies has a huge impact on our health, and it’s our responsibility to raise the highest quality meat available and improve the health of our customers and community in doing so.

I Feel Most Rewarded By…
Seeing the same customers at events and farm tours that have been with us since we started back in 2012. It’s awesome to see families growing and kids being raised on healthy, clean meats!

A Creative Aspect of My Job Is…
Working with our herbalist on new product formulas and creating content about the importance of what we put into and onto our bodies. (We love her Summer Oil!) 

Foods I Eat That I Don’t Grow Are…
The farm doesn’t currently grow any crops/vegetables, but we’re talking about doing a Primal Pastures + Primally Pure collaboration where the farm would grow crops for a specific skincare product that I’m working on. Can’t wait to share details once we get closer to figuring out what that will look like!

We Have Fun By…
My husband is one of 5 kids (who all have families now), and everyone (including his parents) lives close by. We all come together for farm events to help out and interact with our customers. It’s always a blast.

Shopping Tips…
Know your farmer, and know the truth behind deceptive marketing terms. For example, did you know that cage-free hens only get a minimum of 1.2 square feet per bird and rarely (if ever) see the light of day?

My Most Loved Recipe Created From My Farm Is…
The Salt-Brine Spatchcock! It might sound weird, but it’s an old school method perfect for pasture raised chicken.

Start by removing the backbone of a whole chicken with kitchen shears and place it in CLEAN salt water for 24 hours (we like Palomar Mountain Spring Water and Nordur Arctic Sea Salt). And make sure to save all those bones for homemade bone broth too!

Rinse the bird, pat dry, and warm your herb ghee (we love 4th and Heart). Do a light coat over and under the skin.
Blast the spatchcock at 450 degrees for 30 minutes to get that skin nice and crispy, then lower the temp to 350 until the breast hits 160 (around another 20-30 minutes depending on bird size). This method makes sure you keep those juices locked in.

Let it rest 10 minutes before serving. Also, try cooking it over diced potatoes and onions too!

From our friends

Comments


  1. just wondering how your animals are slaughtered?
    is this also done onsite & humanely or sourced out?
    along with a much more natural habitat & food, this part of the critters’ lives matters very much to me.

    tbarclay | 08.05.2020 | Reply

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