How often have we heard the lament that smaller farms are being swallowed by bigger ones and family farmers are being pushed out? It sounds really familiar, right? But the reality is that 98% of US farms are owned by families, says this farmer. And the reality also is that farming is hard work, and increasing the size of operations brings much needed benefits to the farmer. Does the farmer ever get to go on a vacation, for example? It is difficult : “Cows, chickens and pigs aren’t like a house cat, you can’t just fill up their food bowl and tell them you’ll see them tomorrow.” But bigger operations which would enable farmers to hire help might give them a much needed break. The idea of a small, idyllic farm with adorable little chickens and piglets running around is lovely but the real world may require other solutions.