We are a family of seven. Andy is from England, Laura was born and raised in the South. Our five children are Ashley (19), Hannah (12), Jamie (10), Alexander (6), and Michael (4). Hannah and Jamie work together to gather and prepare eggs and feed and care for calves. Andy milks our cows and bottles milk, Laura makes the cheese, manages our websites, handles the books, and answers most emails. Ashe and Laura work together on the pet food line, the girls love to help as well. Our boys are just getting started with gathering eggs and helping to feed the chickens. This truly is a family affair! We do have an adopted member of our family.... our intern Becca! Becca was here with us part time last summer (2012) and we fell in love with her sweet spirit.
Grateful to be the stewards of this farm, we treat our animals and the land we are caretakers for in a holistic fashion, using herbs and natural cures if/when we encounter a medical problem. Antibiotics would be reserved as a last resort and any animal receiving such would be removed from production for an extended period. No hormones are ever given. For more detailed information on our herd health management CLICK HERE. We love raw milk from our jersey cows! Utilizing a rotational pasture grazing system ensures that the grass our animals are grazing has the optimal nutrition available. No synthetic or chemical fertilizers, weed control, or bug control products are used our pasture or land.
Pasture based farming is not new to us, we moved to Nebraska from Georgia where we operated a small pasture based farm as well. All in all we have been farming for about ten years.. which means we are still learning! This type of farming is a passion for us and we are happy to share it with others.
Jamie and Shanda
Hannah gathering eggs in early spring
We have six basic philosophies upon which we have founded our farm business:
TRANSPARENCY: Anyone is welcome to visit the farm anytime. In fact, we encourage visits and tours. We operate in the spirit of openness and honesty. All areas of the farm are open to visitors - you will not find any locked doors or inaccessible farm areas.
RESPECT: We allow our animals to have as much room to roam around as possible. - Cows enjoy finding just that perfect blade of grass or legume; chickens love to scratch around and find all the best bits and bugs - Providing our animals with habitats that best suit their natural tendencies and treating every one with the respect they deserve is important to us. - Our animals have names, not numbers. - Happy animals produce better products!
COMMUNITY: We do not ship food. We believe everyone should know where their food comes from. - All of our grains are locally grown. - We very much desire to support our other local farmers and businesses by shopping locally for our farm and family. Our products can be purchased on our farm, in Omaha at Tomato Tomato, in Lincoln at Open Harvest Coop, and through Nebraska Food Coop.
MODELING NATURE: Cows are designed to forage, to eat grasses, not grain. Poultry and pigs are uniquely designed to help breakdown waste and encourage fertility in the soils. - For this reason our poultry follows our ruminants in the pasture, helping to break apart their wastes, spread the wealth around, keep pests to a minimum, and help to fertilize the soils. We also strive to model nature in other ways. - We do not routinely dehorn our cows, dock tails or ears, or routinely castrate our males piglets or calves. - These practices all originated as a result of crowded or confinement farming and were necessary to help keep the animals from hurting each other. Our animals are given space and room to express themselves and such unnatural measures are not needed. Our animals graze in a manner most natural... sheep, cows, chickens, all graze together. Each animal eats differently and prefers something a little bit different. In our opinion it is more like nature to keep the animals together... and happy.
One of our Hereford pigs with her newborn piglets
GRASS-BASED: By frequently moving pastured livestock and poultry, to fresh pasture we help to ensure the health of both the land and our animals. - Every animal on our farm is on a grass-based diet.
Pasture raised meats are healthier for you, the environment, and the animals. When you choose to eat meat, eggs, and dairy products from animals raised organically and on pasture, you are improving the welfare of the animals, helping to protect our environment, helping small-scale farmers make a living from the land, and giving your family the healthiest possible food. It's a win-win situation!
SOY-FREE: We are a soy-free farm. With so many concerns about the safety of soy we decided long ago to go soy-free for our family. This translated into soy-free for our farm as well. Raising livestock such as poultry and pork without soy takes longer and costs more than with soy, but we feel it is work the extra time and expense. Our meats have a flavor that cannot be beat...slow growing is definitely the way to go! For more information on the dangers of soy visit:www.westonaprice.org/soy-alert
SUSTAINABLE: We operate our farm following the standards and principles of organic farming. We cannot call ourselves "Organic" because we have not gone through the certification process, the costs to doing so are prohibitive for us at this point. It is a goal of ours for the not so far future. All of our feed and hay that we use is certified organic though as well as locally grown and custom ground and mixed fur us in very small batches so that what we feed is fresh. We do not use chemical fertilizers, nor do we use pesticides on our farm or animals. We do not use antibiotics unless it would be as a last resort to save an animal. Our animals are all outside on pasture rather than in confinement buildings so our need for medication is non-existent. The vitamins and supplements that we offer our animals are all organic approved and we keep a buffer pasture between ourselves and our conventionally farming neighbors.
Our early milking days
Our Jingle... written and performed by theChisholm and Langford kids.