In a recent post, entitled “Why We Raise Beef”, we introduced you to our cattle. We would now like to introduce you to the farmer and the farm.
We moved to this 14-acre farm in Frederick County, Virginia last summer, July 4, 2015 to be exact. We are one of those odd folk that ‘upgrade’ when the kids are grown. It was both desire and necessity, for we had inherited four miniature horses, and another dog after my mom recently passed away. It was animals that caused us to outgrow our old home, and a desire to farm.
Land is meant for production of some sort. For the first time in our married life, and that has been a long time, we had more land than animals. I am here on the farm full time with the exception of a small part-time seasonal job. We needed more producing to be taking place, and we wanted farm status on our property, so we began to brainstorm. I grew up on a 1,300 acre tourist attraction/ farm at Endless Caverns near New Market, Virginia. I always described it as an Old MacDonald farm. We had a cow/calf operation, sheep, pigs, horses, dogs, and cats, plus the caverns, campground and a recreational 5 acre lake. I have always liked cattle. Though here at this farm I was not too interested in a cow/calf operation since I do the bulk of the work. That is why we decided to raise Miniature Hereford steers for beef. There is less work involved as well as less buildings required. Our cows have a stall they share in the horse barn.
There is something very satisfying about having productive land of any sort. Here we have the cattle, a vegetable garden, and flower gardens as well. It is the cattle that raise more questions from people we talk to. Questions about how are we going to slaughter those pretty animals, are we not just going to keep them, “I could never to do!” is one remark we often hear. The truth is we are not going to slaughter them, someone else will do that job. Why don’t we just keep them is akin to asking us why don’t we just keep our kids forever and do nothing but feed them! No, thank you. The truth is something has to die for us to live. Be it plant or animal, our very survival depends on eating living organisms. The only other option is carrion. No, thank you again. It seems a common misconception that beef comes from the grocery store.
Here at our farm, we hand-raise our cattle, we watch them everyday out in the beautiful, green pasture they are on or the pond they love standing in. They are sprayed daily for flies, given fresh bedding to lie on, cool, fresh water always and looked over on a daily basis. We think this is the best possible way for our food to live. We treat our plants the same way as well.
These steers will be sold within the next couple months. We sell them on the hoof, $2,000 each. We will haul them for the customer, the rest is in the purchaser’s hands. Call 434-962-7233, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, or respond through this blog if you are interested in having some beautifully raised, premium Hereford beef in your freezer this year.