Bushblades is a small 18-acre family run farm located in Harperley, North Durham. The farm was established in the mid 1800’s and is made up of a number of small paddocks surrounded by old hawthorn hedges which provide a natural habitat for insects and other wildlife. Using natural fertilisers from our small but productive alpaca herd, we are pesticide free and replenish the soils nutrients organically. The farm is fortunate to have access to a natural spring, which provides an abundance of fresh running water through the main paddock 365 days a year.
New to farming but routed in the ideology of sustainable and traditional farming methods, Garry has built the idea of Bushblades Farm around fundamental core values ‘Plain and Simple’. Which is now our brand standard. It is our intention to ensure that our supply chains, from where we source our animal feed to where we deliver our final products, are kept as short and as local as possible, minimising the carbon footprint of our produce.
Jane’s background of food and feed law enforcement essentially means that our farming principles are of the highest standard. Using only high-quality feed and providing healthy outdoor living conditions for our animals all year round, means we are able to deliver the best quality our specialist breeds have to offer.
The farm’s foundations are based on two pillars
- Animal Welfare
- Premium product
We do not condone the routine use of antibiotics or other medications and because of our practices, we do not have to. We do however work closely with our veterinary practice, who understands we are not interested in intensive farming or maximising the meat yield of our stock when providing routine care.
We are aiming for quality and enhancing the natural flavour of our meat by using old & pure specialist breeds which have retained their original flavour through their blood lines, coupled with locally sourced basic ingredients. (our lush pesticide free, Durham grass pastures).
The farm currently stocks rare breed pigs, such as the British Saddleback, Middle White and Large Black. We will soon be taking delivery of our own Berrichon sheep and ‘Native Aberdeen Angus' cattle. Unlike other farms who breed their animals for the supermarket, our aim is to develop each of our breed lines prioritising meat quality and final product taste.
Our ‘return’ to old fashioned farming methods means our produce is ‘slow grown’… the right way. We are keen to ensure that our animals are not overstocked and have an abundance of land to roam free. We also do not overfeed so as to ensure the meat matures at a natural rate, guaranteeing an even and acceptable fat to protein ratio. This also means that we only send to slaughter when the animal is at its prime. If we have to keep the herd for an extra month to ensure the quality of the meat, so be it. (That just means that Jane can nurture them for that while longer!)
We are currently working with other ‘like-minded’ local farmers and individuals to produce our premium product to sell directly to our customers. We may not be able to cater for large volumes, which is not generally acceptable to some commercial food chains, however we do offer the highest quality meat and taste experience. Once you have sampled the meat, I am sure you will agree, our produce is more of a delicacy for fine dining, rather than mainstream cuisine.
There is a growing demand for high quality locally produced sustainable food (Real food) We work with a small number of exclusive restaurants with the expertise to showcase our product. We are keen to develop a personalised service for those catering in this market and hope that our customers fully appreciate such quality.