At Covey Rise Farms we strive to raise animals in as humane and natural way as possible, the results are morally superior, clean, and nutritious meats that also happen to beat your standard grocery store fare hands down in flavor. We are organically minded in our animal husbandry and utilize rotational grazing, heritage breeds, and quality NON-GMO feeds to eliminate the need to use growth promoting hormones and antibiotics. Animal welfare is of highest priority to us though, and when needed, we do use prescribed therapeutic medications to treat and cure conditions, these animals are marketed through conventional markets though and do not enter our natural meats sales channel after following proper USDA withdraw periods. Starting in 2019 all of our meats will pass through small, family owned USDA processing facilities. To ensure utmost care of our final product we self audit each of our plants annually to make sure that our animals are treated with the same care and compassion on their final day as they were on their first day.
For our ewe(female) flock we raise a breed of sheep called Katahdin's. They are a breed of hair sheep that originally was bred in the United States. These sheep naturally shed their coats in the spring eliminating the need for shearing while also decreasing the amount of lanolin that naturally occurs in their skin and coat. They also exhibit high parasite resistance, ability to thrive in a pasture based operation, and
a great maternal drive. We don't breed our ewe lambs until they are 1.5 years old so they have a chance to fully mature before having their first lambs at 2 years old. We typically lamb in March and April and it is typical to see twins if not triplets and the occasional set of quads with our sheep. To achieve hybrid vigor we cross our ewe's to another hair sheep breed, the Dorper. By bringing in this cross in, we are able to take advantage of the more muscled and larger Dorper, while not losing the qualities that make us love Katahdin's. We look forward to sharing our premier pastured lamb with you!
For our meat chicken's we raise Cornish Crosses. While these birds may share the same genetic makeup of their conventional cousins, the finished product is anything but conventional. Our chicks come to us less than 24 hours old from the hatchery, upon arrival they set into one of our brooder buildings where they have warmth, shelter, feed, and clean water for the first 3 weeks of their life. Upon graduation from the brooder the now feathered chicks are moved into one of our pastured shelters.
For the next 5 weeks they are moved daily to fresh pastured to graze and hunt for bugs and seeds along with being supplemented with a high quality, Non-GMO feed that we grind fresh ourselves. We are firm believers that the addition of a diverse diet including everything from pasture grasses, forbs, and legumes to insects and high quality feeds along with their daily moves and slower grow-out times leads to a superior chicken both in taste and texture. Try our variety pack today to taste the difference for yourself.
Our laying hen flock is made up of a variety of breeds from conventional breeds like the Leghorn and Barred Rock to historical and rare breeds like the Buckeye. Our hens spend their summers being moved around the farm in their egg mobile and spend their winters in one of our hoop houses. We like to call our pastured eggs the gateway drug to local foods, because from the moment you crack one to the look of that first golden orange yolk we know you'll be hooked!
We raise a true Heinz 57 of hog varieties but the basis of our hog herd are Gloucester Old Spots, Large Blacks, and Red Wattles. All of these pigs get to spend their spring, summers, and falls outside rooting and wallowing to their hearts delight. In the winter we move our pigs off pasture and let them escape the elements in deep bedded hoop houses while still having access to pasture areas. You won't find a farrowing or gestation crate on our farm, as we utilize traditional farrowing huts and group pens for our gals that are expecting. We have found that by giving them some space and raising heritage breeds these gals learn pretty quickly how to have piglets with minimal interference. We also find that by keeping them on pasture ,they are much calmer and happier pigs.