Animal welfare & Health Status
At Hardiesmill, we take the view that we maximize the chances of achieving our aims by having healthy and happy cattle.
Since cattle ar ehappiest on grass, we only feed them grass in the summer and try and keep them out as long as possible. In the winter our cattle are fed homegrown silage, straw, minerals and a pickle (tiny amount) of our own cereals throughout the winter (when they are housed indoors) and strictly no routine hormones or steroids (actually it's illegal in the UK). Minerals are sourced through Border Farm Supplies, who also provide the feed for the bulls and calf creep. The cows and calves are turned out to enjoy the grass in the spring, whereupon they're checked daily for problems by Jake or Alison (who have a combined 92 years cattle handing experience; even the guys on the food side are from farming backgrounds). The cows run with the bull for approximately three months, are calved either in the Spring or the Autumn and suckle their calves for at least six months. Heifers are kept away from the bull until they are equal to or over 450kg in weight.
We work closely with Merlins Vetinary Practice on using good animal husbandry (ventilation, housing etc) to reduce reliance on drugs, and are now part of the health scheme using Biobest.