Did you know that our dear Cortland County is a home to over 10,351 dairy cows? While this certainly makes buying local milk an easy step to achieve, have you ever wondered past the milk you splash in your cereal bowl to consider the meat that ends up on your dinner plate?
On this fine Friday, we wanted to make sure that you knew about our neighbors at New Penn Farm (and Nex-Gen Beef) who are working hard to provide sustainable cattle and beef for Cortland County and beyond!
Hey, Friday, is it dinner time yet?
SVHC: Thanks for joining us for #farmerfridays, New Penn Farm! How long have you been raising beef cows in Cortland County?
NPF: For the past 7 years, Jeanetta has been the farm manager here at New Penn, but I (Carl Hinkle), started raising Angus beef cattle here in Truxton, just over 30 years ago.
SVHC: Raising food for your community, such as cattle, cannot be an easy task to take on, why engage this type of lifestyle?
NPF: With 30 years of experience behind me as a registered Angus seedstock farm, the goal for both Jeanetta and I is to breed cattle and create better beef with fewer resources (fuel, time, water, feed, etc.) with every generation of cattle born on the farm. Jeanetta and her family grew up with a hobby farm but then also had the opportunity to show my beef cattle and to learn about the beef industry over these past years. (Jeanetta, and her husband Kevin, also sell beef from off the farm through Nex-Gen Beef Farm.) Besides cattle, we also understand the importance of involving young people in agriculture as New York has an abundance of ag-related career opportunities.
SVHC: Tell us a more about your cattle...
NPF: At New Penn Farm we breed for cattle with the most optimal genetics, docility, and functionality and then we sell the cattle to other producers. We are just one of many producers who over the years of working together have helped create more beef with fewer animals and resources. Alongside the cattle we raise for sale, the pasture-raised beef we raise is sold through Nex-Gen Farm.
SVHC: What has been your biggest joy as a local cattle producer?
NPF: For both our Jeanetta and I, our greatest joy has been growing up with a farming lifestyle and raising our kids to be exposed to the same.
SVHC: What has been your greatest challenge as a local cattle producer?
NPF: We would probably have to say the misunderstanding by the public regarding how hard farmers work to feed their own families and the world. Also, the lack of workers who are capable, hard-working, can work independently or in a group and can problem solve and see tasks through has been an issue.
SVHC: If you could tell your community one thing, what would it be?
NPF: We love our animals! We work hard to educate the next generation in the importance of agriculture and to foster an interest in agricultural work. At New Penn Farm, we are taking all the right measures to ensure the future of our land for the next generation of farmers, such as, utilizing the land that is unsuitable for housing or crops as pasture land to feed cattle.
SVHC: How can the community connect with you if they desire to look at your cattle or purchase some beef?
NPF: For cattle production, you can visit our website or email us. For beef, you can email Jeanetta or visit Nex Gen Farms online. Also, New Penn Farm is on Facebook. We post regularly in regards to our work with youth and what is available concerning our cattle--check us out!