At Bere Mill Farm we keep three breeds of cattle and sheep which have been carefully selected for their suitability for water meadow grazing, and for the texture and quality of the well marbled but lean meat.
On our farm intervention is kept to an absolute minimum. Stock are reared and overwintered outside. The animals graze on the unimproved pasture and hay made on the farm – a range of ‘old’ meadow grasses and associated wild flowers. Hard feed is used only where necessary and likewise, wormers and antibiotics are only used where welfare necessitates. For animals raised extensively and outside, there is little occasion for antibiotic use.
Much of our farm is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and our farming practices aim to ensure that wildflowers thrive, that we have a full breadth of insect and bird life, and that this will not only breed healthy livestock but produce fantastic tasting meat.
Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI); DEFRA Higher Level (environment) Scheme and Countryside Stewardship
Short in stature, docile in nature, Belted Galloways are slow growing animals that are very hardy and can thrive in the outdoors year round. The fact that they are slow to mature means that their beef has a distinctive flavour and texture that is sought after.
This breed is very hardy, requiring little intervention, and thrives on the relatively poor water meadow grazing. They take over a year to reach their final weight and so their meat is sold as hogget, which is rich in colour and has a very full bodied flavour that retains the succulence of lamb.
These sheep are a more traditional commercial breed, being quicker to mature, and yet kept in the same way as our other animals being grazed on pasture and living outside year round. This faster growing breed can be sold for lamb, and so helps to ensure a constant supply of meat for sale.