She has just completed her master’s in mechanical engineering – with a focus on geothermal technology to be used as a sustainable thermal energy source while mitigating permafrost thawing. Sarah’s passion for environmentalism, soil health, farming, and ethical meat motivated her to start this farm with her family.
And when it comes time for slaughter we ensure these goats have the most painless and stress-free deaths possible, at a local abattoir (so they don’t have to ride in a trailer for very long).
It’s all because of how we manage them. We follow what’s called Holistic Management and Holistic Planned Grazing (a.k.a. mob grazing, cell grazing, rotational grazing, management intensive grazing, regenerative grazing, adaptive grazing, etc). This means that our goats and kept in a herd and moved to new grass frequently (every 1-4 days), and they don’t return to an area until it has recovered from their previous grazing.
This roaming-herd behaviour has been a natural part of our ecosystem for millions of years, until it was recently disrupted by humans. We have lost the original vast herds of North America, but thankfully we can use goats (and other livestock) to achieve the same effect. And when the herds are restored, the land starts to heal. I have personally measured a 50% increase in plant growth after a single season with nothing but a few animals and carefully planned grazing movements.
Our grazing management (see above) ensures that our goats are eating only the highest quality forage, all summer long. The way grass-fed goats are traditionally raised the quality of the plants they are eating declines significantly towards the end of the season, which is the most critical time for the end quality of the meat! Due to our holistic pasture management our goats eat the equivalent of new spring grass right up until the day they are killed. Also, we don’t take shortcuts by supplementing their diet with grain, corn, hay, silage, etc (which would improve our profits but be bad for the health of the animals and the quality of the meat). They only eat the mix of grasses, herbs and shrubs that grow in their pasture (supplemented with milk-replacer in April, 2020 while they were too young to digest grass). We have also chosen our slaughter date carefully to ensure the best possible meat quality; grass quality unavoidably declines with the cold weather in October.
The way animals are killed, the way they are cleaned and butchered, is also extremely important for meat quality. To that end we have chosen our abattoir and butchers very carefully, and will be working with them closely to ensure this amazing meat reaches its full potential.