Open farm weekend trip to Ballylagan Organic farm

The BFM took his two lil princesses to Ballylagan Organic Farm as part of the open farm weekend initiative run by Ulster Farmers. It is taking part today and tomorrow (14-15 th June) across 21 farms in Northern Ireland.

12 Ballylagan Road
Straid
Antrim
BT39 9NF
United Kingdom
http://www.ballylagan.com
028 9332 2129

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We arrived just after 10 and the girls were well prepared in their welly boots or galoshes for our US friends. They spotted a trailer with hay bales and Alanna a very capable young face painter. They duly got a pig and chicken painted respectively. Now we were ready for the tour!!

We were taken around the farm by Tom who has been farming since 1991. He explained that the farm was organic, this means all the livestock are allowed to roam freely in the farmland and are not in battery/factory style enclosures. They do not get unnecessary medications and don’t use artificial chemical fertilisers and pesticides, also no genetically modified products/seeds are used!!

We saw a wonderful open garden patch in which there were growing tunnels containing sweet strawberries (for jam), carrots, runner beans, garlic.
Outside there were potatoes,leeks and onions and also a bee hive to allow natural on site pollination and of course honey. All produce is grown and sold in farm shop as well as used in the tea room and guest house.

The livestock we saw were Aberdeen Angus cows,Lleyn sheep and lambs some of which were holed up in the cowshed awaiting to be sheared or shorn?!?! There were 3 mature Pigs 2xSaddleworth and a Tamworth (2 sows and a boar, so he was kept busy!!) and chickens. All the meat is reared lovingly and au naturel before being humanely slaughtered and butchered and sold in the shop/ used in the guest house.

It was fascinating for me and the girls to see the care attention and quality going into this farm. There should be more open days and more people should get to know how our food is produced and should be produced.
I would thoroughly encourage you all to get out and support your local farms.

Once again the BFM shares the food love!!! Ciao down now!!!

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