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Ayrshire Farm takes great pride in their ability to combine the old with the new. They like to say they have one foot in the 19th century while one foot also firmly planted in the 21st century. Originally a plantation from the 1820’s, the farm works hard to preserve its rich history while also joining forces with the modern world to address many contemporary issues. One aspect of Ayrshire’s modernity is its commitment to humane, organic, and sustainable farming practices.
Some of the official certifications they proudly sport are Certified Organic, Certified Humane, Project Non-GMO Verified, Food Alliance Certified, and more. Their commitment to improving the health of their surrounding environment and in earning the trust of their customers is obvious from their many certifications.
Ayrshire Farm specializes in raising livestock of rare and endangered breeds as well as growing heirloom fruits and veggies. Both of these activities are contributing to the preservation of these varieties and the biodiversity of the species. Some of the rare breeds they raise are Shire horses, Scottish Highland cattle, Ancient White Park cattle, Gloucestershire Old Spot hogs, and several breeds of free-range poultry including chickens, turkeys, and ducks.
In addition to creating space for these endangered breeds of livestock, they also raise pheasants and wild turkey to be released into farm woodlands that have been replanted to provide wildlife corridors between habitats for native vegetation. In addition, their soil is being constantly amended with cover crops and compost from their three-acre compost facility. As a part of their training, the Ayrshire Shires help in the constant task of soil improvement, keeping the skills of horse-powered farming alive.
Horse- (and dog-)powered herding. Photo courtesy of Ayrshire Farm.
Ayrshire Farm is a highly transparent business and also the parent organization of Gentle Harvest, a organic and gourmet food market/café (now closed), gastropub Hunter's Head Tavern, and MeatMe Pet Food, providing "ethical eats for companion carnivores."