Two very similar farms, only the entire length of Ireland between us.
We’re a forward thinking farm providing ethical and sustainable produce fresh from our small farm in Co.Antrim, Northern Ireland.
We set up the farm back in 2011, when we saw that a majority of male kid goats born to the dairy industry were being put down at birth.
This seemed such an unnecessary waste so we set out to take those males and rear them ourselves for delicious and healthy cabrito kid goat meat. Since then we’ve branched out into rearing free-range rose veal and also seasonal wild game. In 2019 we began producing vegetables and edible flowers.
We now have our own artisan on-site butchery, where we teach others the art of butchery and handling wild game. We also run foraging courses with Forage Ireland throughout the year, herbalist workshops, seasonal cookery classes, fermenting workshops and more! Every Friday-Sunday we open up our doors to the public and have an open farm as well as open our delicious farm cafe where we serve up innovative baked good using foraged finds, seasonal produce and edible flowers from our garden as well as great coffee and a very tasty lunch menu! We also have a little farm shop selling the best of Northern Irish and Irish produce. We deliver our meat boxes all over Ireland and the UK.
The farm is situated three miles from the rugged North Antrim coastline, nestled between the towns of Ballycastle and Bushmills. Up a long winding lane off the Straid Road you will come to our haven, which is Broughgammon.
The farm is roughly a third arable, a third improved grazing and a third rough hill ground. With a stream running through it, a small pond, odd clusters of mature trees and well maintained hedgerows it really is an environmental paradise. And it is like this we would like it to stay!
In 2006 we built a state of the art farmhouse incorporating solar thermal heating, an air-source heat pump, an MVHR (Mechanical-Ventilation with Heat Recovery) system, wind energy (windmills), heavy use of insulation, a wood pellet boiler and a wood stove.
More specifically, the house also has two 10,000lt rain water harvesting tanks plumbed to supply all non-potable water, with the infrastructure in place to use a UV treatment & filter system to supply potable water in the future. Wastewater is transported to a biokube waste water treatment facility before discharging to a pond for tertiary treatment by reeds and plants; finally returning clean to the local waterway.
We believe in sustainable food sourcing, be it the the reduction in the culling of males produced in the dairy industry as a ‘by-product’, and instead utilizing them as the superb resource they are, or, the way in which we fail to use our beautiful Game resource, favoring farmed game instead, and, Even simple food miles.
Our belief in a sustainable food chain has seen us promote local diversification in farmsteads encouraging other farmers with by-products to think differently.
We have extended beyond the realms of a mere sustainable food chain to try and become a leading example of sustainable living.
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Our butchery facility was incorporated into traditional stone-built barns aiming to be vernacular with the surrounding area. Solar thermal energy was incorporated for the heating of the water.
A large settlement tank has been installed for the recording and monitoring of the effluent, allowing for the future installation of a specifically designed water treatment facility. We reduce the overall use of water using low flow appliances and effective water management plans.
We were active members in the Countryside Management Scheme (CMS) between 2006-2015. Under the scheme we have actively restored the majority of the farms field boundaries with double fencing, re-established dry-stone walls, sheughs and ditches. We have also aimed to plant approximately 10% of the Farm with woodland or shelter belts.
Our hedgerow restoration has been designed in such a manner as to encourage Wildlife Corridors between tree plantings, allowing for abundant and plentiful habitat. We have also made a personal proposal to plant areas of wildflower and bird cover mixes to encourage wildlife.
A third of the farm was designated as Species Rich Grassland under the CMS, and subject to restricted grazing and machinery operations to encourage Nesting Birds and Wildflowers. Another third is protected under unimproved grassland and the remaining as improved grassland However, we have always strived to go beyond this.
We go further! In 2013 we enrolled in the Charity scheme to plant One Million Trees in One Day across Ireland! It was great, and we’re pleased to say that we were at it again in 2014 even becoming a distribution hub for other participants! We manage to help with four woodlands created, 7 hedgerows reinstated and plenty of wildlife corridors being established, planting tens of thousands of native tree species to create shelter belts, animal highways and small plots of forestry for wild animals and birds.
Where to next? We are always looking ahead, we hope to increase our service to you, by making better use of our farmers markets, making our products more accessible.
If we cant get to you though, have no fear, as we’ve invested heavily in our online shop, and can now offer deliveries throughout the UK and ROI.
That’s not all though, we have a sustainable development plan aiming constantly to re-address our environmental impact. So what have we got so far? On the farm side our plans are to incorporate rain water harvesting tanks, photo-voltaic panels, and there’s even a feasibility study looking at the potential for Hydro-electric on our stream!