Introducing another of our admirable customers The Home Farmer, located in Wensleydale, Yorkshire, UK. The Home Farmer is an innovative dairy farm run by brothers Ben and Adam Spence. Alongside the brothers they have the help of their parents Susan and David and Ben’s wife Sam. In 2016, The Spence Family realized they needed change on their small farm. At the time there were huge uncertainties around milk prices. They decided to branch away from standard milk sales and began selling their own products direct from their farm. A brave move some would say!
They spent two years renovating their farm with the build of a new milking parlour, cheese room and cattle shed. When building their new shed and milking parlour, achieving a high level of cow comfort was their main aim. They installed EASYFIX Cubicles and Mattresses to maximize comfort during the winter months, when the herd spend their time indoors. They installed EASYFIX SoftFloor in the milking parlour to provide ultimate comfort for the farmers themselves. This way they could run a high performing business the way they desired and care for their animals’ welfare whilst doing so!
Recently, EASYFIX Brand Ambassador, Graeme Parker aka “The Hoof GP” visited The Home Farmer to get an insight into the life of The Home Farmer and their innovative farming set up! Check out The Hoof GP’s visit in the video below!
With a Holstein- Friesian herd of one hundred cows, The Spence’s are firm believers in maintaining a small herd size. This way each cow will get the care and attention they need. A small herd means for higher levels of output and productivity. Believe it or not, these cows each have their own names! The Spence’s value their animals so much, they are merely more than just a number in their eyes!! They update their followers regularly on social media of their animals and daily duties. Check them out here!
The innovation in this family came through when deciding to produce and sell their own products. They renovated an old horse box, turning it into what they now call the “Mobile Milk Vending Machine”. This allows them to sell their Milk and a traditional Old Roan cheese around the village of Wensleydale every day.
They started out their day with a tour around the recently renovated farm. Graeme shows the cattle laying comfortably in EASYFIX Cubicles, before being put back out on the grass after milking. Bringing the comfort of the outdoors, indoor! Jokingly, he comments on the comfort of EASYFIX products for the farmer as well as the animal, whilst Ben stands on the SoftFloor Mats. Throughout the video, you can see the care that Ben has for his animal’s welfare in their daily farm duties.
The Hoof GP comments on how inspiring it was to hear Ben’s future thoughts and plans for the farm and to see the real love he has for his job.
They take huge pride in their cheese production. Their Old Roan Cheese is made using raw, unpasteurized milk straight from the milking parlour. The freshness of the cheese speaks for itself, travelling a mere five meters from the milking parlour to the cheese room! Ben highlights the importance of the cows being on a grass diet as the natural bacteria adds flavour to the products. The recipe of this cheese brings back the traditional taste to their Wensleydale customers.
They took a look inside the renovated horse box before bringing it out to the local village for the day. Inside this mobile shop, they offer glass bottles for customers to purchase milk, syrups to create fresh milkshakes and their famous, Old Roan cheese. A delightful and unique method of selling their products, they are clearly extremely proud of producing.
Continuing their tour of the Home Farm, they head into the Cheese processing room, showing the process from start to finish. The Hoof GP was amazed to see the time that goes into producing cheese from scratch,
They took a walk around the farm to wrap up the visit and Ben articulates, again, the importance in maximizing the cow’s comfort indoors as well as outdoors. When the cows are outdoors, they are most comfortable because of the light ground and fresh air.
Maintaining this level of comfort was essential for the Home Farmer for the winter months as well as the summer months. The cows are housed in the winter months. Ben commends the comfort the EASYFIX products have provided to their animals since they were installed. With the mattresses and cubicles mimicking the comfort of outdoors, with built in scratchers to increase comfort for the animal.
The Hoof GP’s visit to the Home Farmer shows the care and love the Spence Family have for their animals and the innovation behind their business. Comfort is key in ensuring productivity levels remain high and The Home Farmer are a perfect example of this.
As they say themselves:
For more information on The Home Farmer and for regular updates, check out their website here. Also find them across social media @Thehomefarmer. Interested in hearing more about EASYFIX products featured in the video? Contact us on +353 (0) 9096 43344 or email Online@EASYFIX.ie