About Fat Cow Farm
Fat Cow Farm is a family-run, diversified farm that raises free range beef, pork and poultry. Fat Cow Farm was established in 2010 by Peter Trono and his son Zach, who had worked at a local Charlotte dairy farm while growing up. His experiences at the dairy farm fostered a passion for starting and maintaining a farm of his own. Peter was retiring soon from a lifetime career in real estate and a third generation family owned fuel oil buisness, and he was looking for something to do during his retirement years. He purchased 85 aces of farm land off of Bingham Brook Road which had not been farmed in over 10 years. To recapture the overgrown pastures he acquired 18 Scottish Highland cows which grazed in the fields for a year and a half. The Highland Cattle were then sold to a farmer in Shelburne (you can currently see them grazing in a pasture on Harbor Road) and were replaced with registered Hereford cows to provide a better source of meat. The award-winning Herefords came from the SMB Cattle Company located in neighboring North Ferrisburgh, Vermont. These cows were bred with a Canadian Champion Hereford bull and we have enjoyed the extraordinary beef from their offspring ever since.
Shortly after aquiring the land, Trono gifted the development rights to The Vermont Land Trust so that 75 acres of the land would stay open in perpetuity. The remaining 10 acres were to be used for housing for Peter and his three sons who eventually planned to build homes on the farm. Fat Cow Farm has since expanded to pasturing and growing crops on over 375 acres of both purchased and leased land in the Charlotte area. The herd is rotated onto fresh grass during the pasturing season. Peter's son Zach bales hay from a variety of healthy grasses for winter feed. In addition he grows non-GMO corn to be fed as silage to supplement their winter diet. A limited amount of grain is fed, mostly to train the herd to respond to buckets for the purpose of moving them from pasture to pasture.
Just as the land acquisition has explanded, so has the variety of animals living on Fat Cow Farm. A flock of about 35 Dorper meat sheep now live on the farm. They are a non wool hair variety (their hair does not need to be trimmed because they self shed seasonally) that are known for their excellent quality of meat. We contiunally roate in and out about eight pigs of the Berkshire, Hampshire and Temworth variety. Each spring we also raise meat chicken and turkeys and also have a flock of free range egg laying hens that provide farm fresh eggs daily.
On our farm it is common to see a pasture with cows, sheep and pigs grazing with the chickens and turkeys running around next to them. Every animal on the farm is humanely raised and naturally fed with no hormones, antibiotics, additives, steroids or animal by products. Our mission is to take exceptional pedigree animals, provide them with the best available feed and treat them humanely while having total control over their development, assuring the best product possible. We do not buy animals to finish on our farm. They are bred, born and raised at Fat Cow Farm.
What's new at Fat Cow Farm...
We are very excited about introducing the exceptional Kobe style beef that will be available through our farm this Summer (2016). Three years ago we purchased our first registered Wagyu bull, Gabriel, from Vermont Wagyu Spring-Rock Farm in Springfield, Vermont. Wagyu cows are known for their superior genetics that produce distinctive marbling that is rich in Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids. Wagyu, commonly known as Kobe style beef, is higher in mono-saturated fat levels and lower in saturated fat, resulting in both healthy and delicious meat. This brings a marbling that is not normally found in grass fed beef. We certainly agree with the notion that you should not eat beef everyday, but when you do it should be special.
Last year we purchased our second Wagyu bull, George, from Spring-Rock Farm. Gabriel has been breeding our registered Herefords producing what we are affectionately calling "Wagfords". Now George is breeding Gabe's offspring, increasing the wonderful genetics only found in Wagyu beef. Our herd is now at 100 cows, of which half have Wagyu bloodlines, and we are expecting another 40 or so calves this spring.