|The house that I lived in with Esteban and Arthur in France|
Products with the above seal on them are certified under the Label Rouge. This program guarantees that its products have met a specific set of characteristics establishing that is of higher quality to similar products. Food products and non-food agricultural products such as flowers are eligible for certification under this program. In all that translates to about 500 products being certified under this program in France. For pork, some of the criteria deal with feeding, breeding conditions and age at the time of slaughter.
The most challenging and rewarding part of the internship was working alongside people who spoke almost entirely no English while I spoke very poor French. At the start communication was a big obstacle to overcome when trying to accomplish basic farm tasks. After a few days, we were able to establish a routine and communicate effectively through body language and the few words of French and English that both parties knew. Even though I was not able to have a conversation with the workers, I could tell that they truly cared about their profession and raising their hogs in a healthy environment was their top priority. This showed me that no matter where you may find yourself that producers in both the U.S. and abroad care about the quality of products that they provide to consumers and make agriculture a unique industry due to that characteristic.
If you have any questions, comments or concerns send them my way. I would love to hear them!