At NIKU Farms we partner with local farmers who share the same values and high standards as us. Everyone working at, or with, NIKU Farms believes in the importance of ethical and sustainable farming. Although due to unprecedented circumstances, this past year has seen a rise in support of local farmers and food chains and we hope to see this new support for local food systems continue upwards.
Earth Day 2021: Regrow our Earth has us thinking about our farm partners and all the good they do to reverse their agricultural footprint and better the environment we all depend on. Here are some regenerative practices a few of our farm partners practice as a reminder that supporting our ecosystem is a community effort. If our local farmers are doing their part, let’s do ours and support them.
Woolley’s Lamb is expertly managed by Carrie Woolley. After drawing inspiration and guidance from farmers in New Zealand, Carrie set out to introduce sustainable farming practices to the industry that Ontario has never seen before. Her work with silvopasture and cover crop growth has improved the health of her local woods and soil health. It also earned her a regional award from the Government of Ontario in Agri-food Innovation Excellence.
All of our partners take extra care to maintain their fields and ensure their animals do not overgraze. Overgrazing is a problem that reduces the health and abilities of pastures. This leads to erosion of soil and also encourages the spread of invasive species which negatively impacts the entire local ecosystem. Bill and Michelle from Blackview Farms always keep their cattle herd moving with a rotational grazing system, and also keep their pasture-raised chickens right behind the herd. By doing this, the chickens are able to pick up grub and ‘clean’ the pastures left behind by cattle. Shaheer and Bahaar from Chicken Thika Farm also utilize their own leapfrogging system to make sure that their chickens always have access to fresh pasture and old grass has time to regenerate.
Heather at Big Rock Bison makes it a point to work towards promoting the growth of native grasses on their pastures. Native grasses provide natural nests and shelter for local wildlife and require less maintenance. On top of their ethical and pasture-raised poultry, John and Sarah at 5 Chicks and a Farmer are working towards a regenerative farming plan, while our friends at Marita Fields and Howick Community Farms bring things back to basics. Respecting the way original farmers worked, they raise their animals with the utmost respect and care in their natural environments. The same goes for our fishing partners. Respecting the fishs’ environment and habitat is at the core of their fishing. Aware of bycatch and overfishing problems, the fishers at John O’s take extra care not to take more than we need.
If you’d like to try any of the sustainable and pasture-raised meats from our farm partners, sign up for NIKU Farms today and begin customizing your first order today.
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