Organic Dairy Farming
– More than just a hipster trend
Almost 225 years ago Scotland’s national poet, Robert Burns worked the lands here at Mossgiel Farm. He often wrote in his poems of his love for all things nature – in fact many of his best works were written because of his experience of nature at Mossgiel, including the world renowned ‘Tae a Mouse‘…
he wrote famously after he overturned a mouse nest with his plough, destroying it’s home and habitat.
Robert himself would have been an organic farmer – farming without chemical fertilisers or sprays, working with natures complexity to do his best with her wild ways and to try and second guess her next move without the technologies we enjoy today as farmers. Even after his failure as a farmer at Mossgiel when he left to become a writer; he still loved the job enough to become known romantically as ‘The Ploughman Poet’
Today Mossgiel is a very different place; we have weather forecasts to help us plan, we have tractors instead of horses and we have 200 more years of human trial and error to have learned from – but once again, we are back to working with nature instead of against her by farming Organically.
To be certified as an organic farmer, animals MUST graze outside when the weather allows – truly free range in fact! Our pastures must have no synthetic chemicals or fertilisers spread on them and we must use homeopathic remedies and preventatives where possible to ensure our herd remain happy and healthy throughout their lives with us.
GM crops are BANNED in the use of any Organic feeds, which may sound a little strange since the UK government does not allow GM crops to be grown in the UK. However, Great Britain imports more than ONE MILLION TONNES of GM feed for animals each year, with their products ending up on the supermarket shelf with no hint that GM foods were used anywhere on the packaging!
Buying Organic is in fact the only way to guarantee no GM crops have entered your food chain.
Every year, we invite the certifiers from our certification body, called ‘SOPA’ (www.sopa.org) to our farm who check the very fabric of our management and record keeping to ensure we follow the strict rules – so strict in fact that organic regulations are the only food certifications actually governed by law, across the world! We then receive our certificate each year so we can let everyone know how proud we are to be farming organically