Are you wondering what makes rabbits the ultimate sustainable food source? Learn the hows and whys here!
Rabbits: Sustainable Food Source?
Substitute for Expensive Food
Sustainable food provides a number of benefits to humans, the environment, and life as a whole. In a more specific context, it improves the important aspects of life, such as the economy, health, ecology, and survival.
In these times where the economy is unstable and money is scarce, growing and raising your own food can be a great alternative to expensive food such as the preserved and/or processed variety.
Apart from this, the nutritional value of homegrown food goes straight to the body and results in an improved physical state. Utilizing sustainable food also allows you to save on grocery bills by as much as 50%.
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Rabbits, The Ultimate Self-Sustaining Food Source
For a while, I debated which animal is best to breed for food. I considered chickens, rabbits, ducks, geese, and a few larger types like goats. After some research, I decided to go for rabbits for many reasons.
They’re very easy to feed, they breed and grow fast, and they don’t need very much space. Rabbit meat tastes very good, and rabbit fur has a lot of uses.
Growing rabbits for meat is a very productive enterprise. When our children were small, we lived in a small town on a small property and we decided to experiment with growing NZ White rabbits for meat.
It was a great way to put meat on the table for a relatively low cost. Not only is it reasonable in price, but homegrown rabbits are also delicious.
It isn’t gamey and most people say it tastes just like chicken. I think it is much nicer than chicken and a great idea for sustainable living.
This year, we decided we would get back into it. The search began for rabbits and all the accessories we need.
Sustainable Food Benefits
When it comes to environmental sustainability, the positive benefits of sustainable food practices are innumerable. The less you travel means less or zero fuel consumption, thereby freeing the air from pollution.
Growing a variety of vegetables and breeding animals promotes biodiversity as well as self-sufficiency. Filling containers with rainfall results in water conservation.
Creating your own compost pit stops soil degradation and you won’t need to buy fertilizers anymore.
Through gardening, sustainable vegetables and fruits are grown in an organic way which encourages the household members to eat chemical-free food products.
As a result, more nutrients enter the body to eliminate diseases and strengthen the immune system. In terms of physical activity, gardening is an opportunity for free exercise and fitness.
Here’s a video by Joe Robinson about inexpensive and healthy rabbit feed:
Rabbit Fur Projects
Rabbits are more than a sustainable food source for your homestead; you can utilize the entire animal by using its fur and pelt for a number of textiles.
Rabbit fur is well-known for being incredibly soft and warm. For these reasons, it is often used in clothing and bedding.
Rabbit hides and fur make a wonderful lining for coats, boots, and gloves. Rabbit fur muffs are both fashionable and warm in winter months. Shorn fur can be used to fill comforters and pillows. Hides can be sewn together to create blankets.
If you spin rabbit fur into fabric or yarn, you can weave sweaters and mittens. If you felt rabbit fur, you can create marketable hats and capes to earn extra money. Felting requires you to wet and mat shorn fur until it becomes a thick, sturdy cloth.
Rabbit fur is thickest in the winter months, but you will be limited in color choice to white. If you would like a different color, you can dye the fur. The highest quality fur is gathered from rabbits over five months old. Because rabbits are a smaller animal, you will often need multiple pelts to complete a project.
Rabbits for Multi-Use
Rabbits are an extremely useful animal to breed; they will supply you with meat on a regular basis, mate easily, and have fur with a multitude of uses.
On the survival aspect, raising livestock provides food for the family without depending on supermarkets for supplies. It is a comforting thought that when SHTF, you will have your very own food source.
Rabbits, in this case, do not need too much looking after and they are notoriously prolific. You also have the option to sell the vegetables and animals you have or trade them, depending on the things that you need.
Will you consider rabbits as a sustainable food source? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below!
- Raising Rabbits
- How To Butcher A Rabbit: A Vital Skill For Homesteaders
- Homesteading and Farming – The Ultimate Survival Lifestyle
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in May 2015 and has been updated for quality and relevancy.