There's a little strip of land down here in Bluffton that we call "The Bluffton Ridge". It's about 15 miles long, and just a few hundred yards wide. It's where the Appalachian Mountains have gone underground, and combined with the coastal plains weather, where about 52 inches of rainfall pretty evenly throughout the year, this uneroded, incredibly rich mountain soil can provide aplenty. This little strip of land has an extraordinary history.
We are fiercely proud of our zero-waste production system at White Oak Pastures, using every part of the animals that we raise and butcher on our farm. We are even more proud when this zero-waste production system can produce something beautiful - like our leather products.
Our leather products are handmade in our workshop in Bluffton, Georgia, transforming the hides of our grassfed cattle. With our new partnership with Pergamena Tannery, our fully-traceable leather now has a different look and feel. And with our new craftswoman in the leather department, Chandler Rogers, creating new designs by hand, we have some exciting leather items headed to our store.
Many new products and services nowadays are marketed as convenient, catering to new consumer preferences about ease and accessibility - think meal kits, easy microwave dishes, fast food delivery. Most of our customers also appreciate convenience, but they are probably more interested in other aspects of food like eating responsibly, bearing in mind the impact of their choices on land, animals, and society. While there are limitless schools of thought when it comes to eating "responsibly," at White Oak Pastures we work hard to have a positive impact on our land, treat our livestock well, and support our employees. We hope you agree that our pasture-raised meats, grassfed tallow, handmade leather accessories, rawhide pet chews, and all the products of our zero-waste ethos qualify as...
If most consumers knew what I know, they would buy their food directly from a farm.
There are a lot of good reasons to know where your food comes from. The most obvious is that its not a good idea to put anything in your mouth unless you know where it has been.
There are also health, safety, and nutritional concerns. Consumers understand these, and they are certainly important, but there is another whole dimension that I don't think most consumers have contemplated: Consumers literally shape the world with their food dollars.
Mallory Middleton, Staff Lead at the White Oak Pastures General Store, keeps our downtown Bluffton store humming along. Mallory is responsible for regular store duties - selling local Georgia products, grassfed beef tallow products, pastured meats, organic vegetables from the farm, and much more - as well as training new employees.
Mallory Middleton grew up in the southwest Georgia area, first hearing about White Oak Pastures when she was graduating high school and a friend mentioned the farm. During her time at the farm, Mallory has seen and worked with many different departments, including the Organic Garden, Tallow Department, and the Internet Fulfillment Center.
If White Oak Pastures is known for cattle, it's because cattle are our star grazers. Ruminants can cover a lot of ground, and they are the powerhouses behind our managed grazing practices. So how do we use the animal impact of cattle in our holistic land management strategy?
This is part three of a three-part series on how White Oak Pastures uses animal impact to regenerate land that was previously industrially row-cropped into productive, pastured savannah.
Hogs are known for their big animal impact. Pigs are omnivores - and nobody eats like an omnivore. Just think about how wide-ranging our own diet is! At White Oak Pastures, we use the animal impact of pigs to regenerate land and keep our soil and pastures healthy. So how do hogs fit into our planned grazing strategy?
This is part two of a three-part video series on how White Oak Pastures uses animal impact to holistically regenerate land that was previously industrially row-cropped into productive, pastured savannah.
Jacqueline DeWitt first became connected with White Oak Pastures through her work with Whole Foods Market, where she worked selling fish and building an educational farm for many years. When the farming project wrapped up, Jacqueline came to White Oak Pastures as an intern. Although she already had experience in organic vegetable farming, Jacqueline was interested in learning more about livestock and land management.
Olivier Deslandes has been interested in holistic farming practices for many years, following the work of the Savory Institute since 2015. In fact, it was on the Savory Insitute's social media that Olivier first saw information about White Oak Pastures (we work with the Savory Institute in our Land to MarketEcological Outcome Verification program). When he saw that White Oak Pastures had an internship program, he signed up in May of 2017.
Since then, Olivier has worked in multiple departments at White Oak Pastures, spending two years as the hog program assistant manager. He currently works with the cattle department and pasture management. "Working with animals while having a positive impact on the environment in general to me is exciting," says Olivier, "the sheer variety in tasks...
Did you know it's National Egg Day? We're not exactly sure how to celebrate, but we think we'll probably cook up some pastured eggs our favorite way for breakfast (Sunny side up? Scrambled? Poached? Hard boiled? Hard to decide, so we might make them all).
National Egg Day, of course, makes us think about our birds and everyone who works with them at White Oak Pastures. Our pastured poultry staff is the largest field crew on the farm - with good reason.
At White Oak Pastures, we are home to many different species of livestock, but we raise five species of poultry alone: chicken, turkey, duck, goose, and guinea. While, logistically, this can be challenging, leveraging multiple species is central to our land management strategy - because they all have different impact on our pastures.