Small Farms

Off To The Prom…….

Posted at June 14, 2017 | By : | Categories : Small Farms | 0 Comment

Building the chute 001

The day the trailer rolls up to take our grass-fed & grass-finished animals to slaughter brings our sense of spiritual gratitude into sharp focus.  We contemplate the ultimate gift and do our best to be worthy of it.  We determine the day a long life spent growing slowly on our expansive pastures will end.  Do we feel sad ??  Absolutely not.

highlander-steak-001Cloverbud Memorial Day 001We care for these beasts in a way that is superior to over 97% of American beef cattle.  We maintain a calm low-stress group on 90 lush acres of RI coastal grazing at a density that maintains quality – preserving and improving pasture fertility and grass species mix.  That leads to high-value regrowth and fat sleek cattle.  Is it sometimes a little hard to send them off ??  Absolutely yes.  Especially when a big beautiful steer follows you around like a puppy for a shaken grain bucket of treats.  I won’t euphemize the truth by saying we have an agreement since they have no choice in the matter.  Our business model involves growing animals for kill and selling butchered cuts at a premium so we can successfully handle the challenges of small-scale livestock production and occupy a space in the local food economy.

Cloverbud June 10th 17 015We feel valued and affirmed when we sell bone-in quarters to farm-to-table chefs with the skill set and the space to break down whole animals.  A hindquarter from #11 here will be going to Castle Hill Inn in Newport for July 4th weekend – giving Chef Lou Rossi superior yield, delicious healthy fat and the opportunity to fabricate cuts and charcuterie not available through large food-service suppliers.  The exchange lets us sell the whole animal and save on processing costs. This boy and a friend stepped easily onto the trailer today like they were headed to the prom.  The low-stress load (which protects meat quality) resulted from several days of moving the whole herd in and out of the corral through the chute using treats.  They learn that the confined space does not present a threat.

Halal slaughter 010Halal slaughter 001The kill is Halal-style (sharp knife – no stunner – with animal in a squeeze box)  by our Albanian friend in CT who handles them gently and puts them in their own barn stall on arrival with hay and water to settle down before being led the final few steps.

They say that greedy farmers and lazy farmers make mistakes.  Surrounded by a remarkable hard-working team at Cloverbud Ranch, we will fall victim to neither of those foibles.  We don’t overstock or use growth hormones to increase production.  We are guided by land stewardship goals and business ethics that make us accountable to each other – improving our operation and profitability over time.

Local Patch 5A properly designed multi-species grazing operation combined with organic vegetable production comprises one of the highest best uses of the land building soil health and protecting surrounding water resources.  Our collaborative group of independent businesses is prepared to feed the community without requiring the chemical and pharmaceutical input or cross-country transport that describes much of our country’s food supply.

Choose a Cloverbud Ranchshare and enjoy the grass-fed meat, eggs and organic vegetables grown on our Portsmouth property.  You will be included in our monthly cookouts, demos, bird walks and social events that connect you with folks committed to the success of environmentally and economically sustainable agriculture.

Cloverbud June 10th 17 023Cloverbud Starter Share for $500 –
10 lbs. Grass-Fed Ground Beef, 10 lbs. Grass-Fed Steak (mix of sirloin, T-Bone, Ribeye, Kabob cubes), 3 Whole Pastured Chickens (choose when you want them), 3 lbs. Free-Ranged Heritage Pork Bacon, 3 dozen Free-Ranged Eggs (choose when you want them), 3 Veggie Boxes (you choose weeks), 3 Herb or Flower Bouquets (choose when you want them), 1 lb. Jar of Wildflower Honey.  We also have scaled up Ranch Share ($1000) and Boss Share ($1750) with greater savings – i.e. larger multipliers applied with each category.  Email for more info to  We look forward to hearing from you.

Respecting the Protein, MB



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