Our cow Ida that had to be TB retested, went clear on the 23rd May. It was great when our vet said “Yep, Ida’s fine” as he ran his hand over her neck.
We were now officially TB free again, but couldn’t quite yet sell raw milk, as we now needed to re-register with the Food Standards Agency to sell raw milk. On the 10th June, the FSA carried out an inspection and took a milk sample that had to pass FSA hygiene standards. Steve had the phone call from the FSA at 5pm on Friday 14th June to say the milk sample had passed, and that we can sell raw milk again!
Although we have got our raw milk registration back, we are still also selling pasteurised milk, cream and butter, as well as raw milk, cream and butter. If you would like to have our milk and other products from the farm delivered to you on the doorstep, contact the farm office on 01323 449494, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Although we believe our pasteurised milk is a great milk, our raw milk is superior in taste and there are many reasons why people want raw milk and not pasteurised. Customers have told us that switching to raw dairy has helped with their excema, hay fever and asthma. It is thought that 80% of people who are lactose intolerant, aren’t actually lactose intolerant, but pasteurised milk intolerant, and are thrilled they can enjoy dairy again. Raw milk helps with cholesterol too, as it is in its natural state in raw milk and the body can use it, whereas cholesterol in pasteurised milk has been heat treated thereby altering it, making it more difficult for the body to use. For more information about the benefits of raw milk, do visit the Hook and Son website (www.hookandson.co.uk).
Other farm news
June was very wet! This high rainfall delayed our first cut of our crop of grass from the fields we have not grazed. This yield of grass is cut and conserved for the cows’ feed next winter. We need approximately 1000 tonnes in total to feed our 80 cows from the end of October, when the cows come in for the winter, until April when they are turned back out into the fields. We had a high yield of grass, as we had more grass growth with all the rain, but the quality of the grass silage may not be so good, as the grass had to be cut later, and had lost some of its leaf and had started to seed.
When we were under TB restrictions for fourteen months, we couldn’t sell any animals, and had to keep all the calves born. We have far more calves on the farm than we normally do. These youngsters aged between six and fourteen months are all grazing on our fields on the Pevensey Levels.
We are starting a new enterprise with 5 caravanning pitches available. Mains water supplied. Lovely location overlooking the Pevensey Levels, with the cows walking past for milking. If you would like to book a pitch and stay on the farm, please contact us. Bookings will be available after June. Why not have a little break!
Mad Marsh Run
The first ever Mad Marsh Rub was held on the farm on the 28th April. The weather was good, with marshals briefed and in place, when the 190 runners started the Obstacle Course Run (OCR) at 10am. They had bog, trees, straw bale walls, and twenty-eight ditch jumps to contend with. As this trial event took place on part of the Pevensey Levels that has a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) designation, we had to obtain permission from Natural England. The event was a real success, with participants thoroughly enjoying the ditch jumps and beautiful Pevensey Levels. Since the pilot Mad Marsh Run took place, Natural England have assessed the event, and have given permission for Mad Marsh Run to be held twice a year. If you would like to be a volunteer marshal for the event, please let us know. It is a great spectator event too, with a spectator’s walk, tractor and trailer rides, and refreshments. The next one will be held on the 22nd September, for further information about tickets and the event itself, visit the website www.madmarshrun.com