Organic Farming

Organic Farming

Our farm is certified as organic by the Soil Association which has the highest standards of all the organic certification bodies. For more information on the Soil Association please visit their website at www.soilassociation.org. Every year we are inspected by a Soil Association inspector who checks all our records, inspects the farm and ensures we meet their very high standards.

Organic farms obviously come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. We are a small family run farm and we give personal attention to all our livestock. They live in a very stress free environment in small and, where relevant, family groups. Our sheep and cattle are traditional breeds that are well suited to living on grass with no other inputs other than homegrown organic hay. Our rare breed Saddleback pigs and poultry flourish on organic feed grown on the farm and constant access to a rich and varied diet found in the grass. We believe this all contributes to natural good health in the animals and we very rarely have to resort to any medicinal remedies.

The cows munching hay in the snow, January 2010 Martin rolling the field on the tractor, August 2011
The cows munching hay in the snow, January 2010 Martin rolling the field on the tractor, August 2011

One of the key requirements of organic farming is that there should be no use of routine vaccinations, worming or other artificial inputs so often a mainstay in conventional farming. Underpinning this is the successful rotation of animals around the land so there is no build up of parasites or diseases. A low stocking density also helps to keep the grazing and land in a good and healthy condition.

We believe that our way of farming produces meat and eggs that really taste different. Our chickens can forage all day and this helps to give their eggs a taste that is quite different from most bought eggs. The meat takes longer to mature but this contributes to the flavour. We also hang all our meat for as long as possible and this further enhances the flavour. Keeping our animals for considerably longer lengths of time and the fact that they are reared in small groups inevitably means we have significantly high feed and labour costs but the benefits of this can be seen in the welfare of the animals and, we believe, the quality of the product.

The cows grazing, just below the Greensand Ridge, August 2012, photo taken by Richard who helps with pest control. Ini with our two sows, Bella and Octavia, 2009
The cows grazing, just below the Greensand Ridge, August 2012, photo taken by Richard who helps with pest control. Ini with our two sows, Bella and Octavia, 2009