Pasture Raised & Grass Fed
Beef, Chicken, Lamb, Goat, Pork, Rabbit & Turkey
Raised with Intention
The chance to see farm animals, called livestock, is one of the main reasons why so many visitors flock to NCOF. We purposely raise our livestock “in the public eye” to teach people where meat comes from, to encourage everyone to think about how meat is raised and the agricultural practices they support with their food dollars. NCOF’s livestock is humanely raised on our forested pastures. The animals are cared for by the teachers and children in our educational programs.
Availability & Pick up
Due to the size of our farm and the small number of animals that we can sustainably support on our land, NCOF sells meat in limited amounts, and only at certain times of the year. We sell most of our meat “fresh frozen” through our online store. Please wait for your confirmation email to come pick up your order. Meat pick up takes place Mondays-Thursdays 9:00 am-4:00 pm and Fridays 9:00 am-1:00 pm.
We keep approximately 150 hens for eggs, which are called layers, and 100 meat birds, which are called broilers. During the day, our layers go outside and range around in large outdoor runs. One or two always seem to hop the fence! Every summer we raise two batches of broilers in mobile pens called chicken tractors, which we move every few days to fresh ground. This allows the chickens to scratch and eat harmful insects and worms and keeps their fresh manure from killing the pasture grass. At night, we shut the chickens inside their houses or tractors to keep them safe from predators. Our chickens are processed professionally twice a summer at local USDA-certified processors. We sell whole, dressed-out birds fresh and “fresh-frozen.” Please keep an eye on our social media for the chance to order a fresh NCOF chicken!
We are raising 3 Boer goat females, or does. They are a good breed for goatscaping and for meat. Our goats graze on the fresh grass in our pastures, and we rotate them between the pastures to avoid overgrazing. Goats’ natural tendency to reach up high to eat the foliage of trees and shrubs and to eat poison ivy, makes them wonderful animals to use for clearing land! We sell goat meat in cuts.
Our pigs are a mix of two heritage breeds, Berkshire and Tamworth. Our pigs spend their days outside in our pigpen and in our back pasture. They love to root around looking for food and to lay in mud to cool off. Pigs are highly intelligent, social creatures that enjoy living in a herd. Some of ours have big personalities! Our pigs are processed by professional, USDA-certified processors into pork in the spring and fall. We sell fresh and cured pork by the cut, as well as ground pork, bacon, and sausage.
We have a small flock of Finn sheep, a heritage breed known for both good fiber and good meat. Our ewes are bred in the fall so that they will give birth to lambs in the early spring. They often have twins! When lambs are between a year and 18 months old, they are sent to a professional, USDA- certified processor, usually in the fall. We sell our lamb meat by the cut.
Every June, we purchase baby turkeys, called poults, from a local turkey breeder. We then brood them under heat lamps until they are strong enough to go outside and to live in our turkey house. Our growing turkeys spend their days hunting for insects and running around in a large grass pasture. Females are called hens and males are called toms. Naturally inquisitive, turkeys like to amuse themselves by pecking at sparkly objects like buttons or zippers, and by running from one side of the pasture to the other. Moving encourages them to fully develop their muscles, so there is less of a difference in texture between the dark meat and the light meat of our birds. Our turkeys are processed every year by a USDA-certified slaughterhouse. Customers reserve them by placing a deposit on a bird; NCOF members enjoy priority registration. NCOF turkeys are very juicy, roast faster than commercially-farmed turkeys, and very delicious.