As far as media attention goes, Apr. 11, 2014, was a banner day for Greg Finch. As the lone supplier of antibiotic-free, pastured Vermont pork to the highly acclaimed 5-Knives, a specialized supplier of local pork, Finch was offered what amounted to subsidized advertising space in the Burlington Free Press. The paper's staff reporter, Sally Pollak - who told me she met Finch at a coffeehouse - served as stenographer for Finch, who delivered his talking points:
"To [raise pigs] without the modern crutches of medicine, it's management that makes you successful ... Doing things the right way all the time ... I take the best information I can find and adapt it to what I do."
"This time around, with local foods, the farmer is a big part of the market, which is the exciting part of it ... It's more of a collaboration. It's much better for the farmer, and more vibrant for the farm."
"I'm very, very careful about bio-security."
Experienced observers will recognize these remarks as boilerplate rhetoric, the kind that characterizes much of today's food writing. A year later, though, Finch finds himself mired in media muck rather than admiration.