GOODH means WILD in Cornish.
When you make a pledge towards our alternative milk system you also offer nature a home.
We hope that you agree that milk is an amazing thing. There is an extensive and wild history between cow and human spanning thousands of years. We've evolved as a species to be able to digest it into adulthood. We have arguably reached the pinnacle of human ingenuity through cheese (keus). The Cornish are famous for their dairy products, whether they're wrapped in nettles or served with jam and a scone.
But we haven't always produced it in the same way. Higher yields come at a cost. We want to show there is a kinder system than the current status-quo. We need a revolution.
We want to start a Cornish dairy herd where you can get to know the names of the cows and their calves of whom you are sharing the milk. Using traditional small-scale farming methods and you can be sure the herd is happy and healthy. You know the soil is cared for and waterways not polluted. And the cows are fed wilder pasture with trees and diversity.
Your support and allegiance is important. Become a part of the farm by pledging towards our dream.
We want to challenge this:
RSPB: State of Nature 2019
Wildlife is the main motivation. Wilderness is absent from much of the landscape. Instead it has been replaced with monocultures and one-dimensional crops. The natural world is our life support system. We hope to champion working with nature and demonstrate that it is the best way to farm.
And nurture these (with their calves!):
Calves will stay with their mothers and where possible, born outside in tall grasses and herbs.
The 'back-her-business' initiative run by Natwest have agreed to match every pound donated. This means to achieve our £10,000 target, we need half of the total through public donation. The funding will only be given if at least 100 people pledge. That means the more donations we get, the better. So if you can spare even just £1 towards our project we would be extremely grateful for your pledge.
Where the money will go
We are in the midst of developing a shop on the A39 with a plan to fill it with our produce. We are situated just North of Kilkhampton, just north of Bude, right on the main road. This is going to become the main location to buy our milk. We will also have pick-up points in Bude, Bideford and Holsworthy for those further afield. We would love to develop a 'dairy-round' delivery service in the future.
The funds raised will be used for purchasing the dairy herd and to build the milk processing facilities on a farm with other and varied produce: we will also be raising pastured pigs and hens and lots of vegetables and fruit too.
All our produce will be regenerative. This means we aim for it to be climate-change fighting, wildlife-promoting, community-driven and most importantly, healthy and affordable.
It would be fantastic to be in a position to purchase another 4-6 cows to join Pear and Bathsheba: our 2 jersey cows.
What your money will be used towards:
- Single Cow: £900 - £1200 each
- Milking Machine: £913 https://www.milkingmachines.co.uk/uk2shop-13.htm
- Milking Parlour Complete Set-Up: ~£2000
- Bottle Washer (secondhand): ~£700
- Fridges (secondhand): ~£400 each
- Wildflower Seed: £200/acre https://www.cotswoldseeds.com/products/1201/meadow-over-seeding-just-wild-flowers
- Pond Creation: ~£300
- Trees: x45 £101.25 https://shop.woodlandtrust.org.uk/targeting-tree-disease-pack
The natural and social benefits of this way of farming gets us up in the morning rearing to go. Any profits will be reinvested to produce better products and to supply and engage more people.
Currently consisting of a lovely couple of pedigree Jerseys named Bathsheba and Pear.
Their calves will live their lives naturally under the care and support of their mother. Only the excess milk will be bottled after the calf has had a good fill. The calf will be invited into the parlour to suckle while we milk the mother to ensure everyone is in agreement about what's going on and comfortable.
A range of breeds will make up the herd and some will be crossed to produce a cow well-suited to the land and climate and to the customers' preference of milk. At first we hope to be milking 2 Jerseys and 4 Ayrshires/Dairy Shorthorns/South Devons. They will have access to clean, fresh herb-rich pasture everyday.
They will only be fed pasture and browse and only milked once-a-day. This ensures maximum levels of healthy omega-3 fats. We hope to produce milk of the highest possible quality with high nutrient-density and with a real creamy taste.
Grass-fed, organic milk freshly bottled daily.
Jersey A2 milk will always be available as well as milk from other traditional dairy breeds like the Ayrshire, Dairy Shorthorn and others which will make up the bulk of the milk.
It will be filtered and bottled immediately after milking. We hope to sell it at around £2/litre.
Glass bottles will be used and a return-scheme in place where a deposit is placed on the bottle and the bottle returned, washed, sterilised and used again.
City-girl turned farm-head, with a deep love of animals, Rebecca went for a lambing season at age 14 and realised what she wanted to do. Enchanted by the natural world she has spent all of her time on farms ever-since mostly working with livestock in organic systems. With her degree in ecology she feels she has a good grounding for working with nature to produce healthy food from contented animals. She manages the farm alongside her partner Jordan who will be developing the market garden.
Before the supermarket age, small farms used to be the backbone of the community. Hosting and being a hub for social events with local people assisting with the farm work, hay making, potato seeding, and other jobs that benefit from having many hands.
It was also highly relied upon for people's sustenance and the crops would be celebrated and cherished. We hope we can facilitate this and get people outdoors and in-touch with their food. We would love to know what you think and what you envisage for the farm; what would you like from a local farm and how can you help us get there?
Here's what needs to happen in order to sell milk:
- Build a bottling room
- Buy equipment
- Cows to calve
- Develop shop
- Approval by local authority and other legal requirements
- Enjoy the harvest
April is the earliest possible time we expect to be selling milk. That's if all the work was completed swiftly and approval went smoothly.
The launch party will be at the newly converted shop. We will celebrate once we get the go-ahead for sales. Expect white russians and homemade Baileys...
"UK consumers spend £120 billion on food each year yet the report shows that there are serious environmental and health-related costs that generate a further £116 billion."
Sustainable Food Trust, 2017, The Hidden Cost of UK Food https://sustainablefoodtrust.org/articles/hidden-cost-uk-food/
Cheap food is not good for our health and contributing to a changing climate and environment. Intensive agriculture is showing no sign of slowing down and is playing a major part. Let's take back control and put an end to the fallacy of cheap food production.
Our aim is that birds will return and take refuge on our well-rested, tall pastures and in the thousands of trees we are planting.
We can at least try to recover some of the 70% of insects we've lost since 1970 in the UK.
Protecting our top predators is paramount and we welcome, with open arms, badgers, foxes and maybe one day even wild cats and pine martens. And we hope to increase the organic matter in the soil and store as much carbon in it as possible.
Thank you all for reading
We hope you will join us on our way to producing healthy, wholesome food with methods helping to regenerate the landscape and keep the planet habitable.
Don't hesitate to let us know about any insights you may have or any feedback as this would be gratefully received.