For generations, Will and Lois's families have farmed. Both our families started farming in the now London suburbs of Bushey, Harrow & Northolt. The British dairy industry was prominent for the early part of the 20th Century, and agriculture and urban areas were closely connected. Before refrigeration and supermarkets, the horse and cart dairy delivery rounds happened twice a day. I will dedicate an entire blog to this wonderful history shortly, but for now I will focus on today.
As both families moved out of expanding London in the post-war years and into the home counties, changes were afoot in the wider agricultural industry. Many farmers came away from dairy and branched into, or expanded their commercial beef production. This beef industry is something that our families have been dedicated to for decades. There have many changes from consumer tastes to industry developments and new breeds of cattle. British beef production is a process that has been fine-tuned and we are now at a time where farmers are utilising a wealth of experience and traditional techniques, alongside new technology and machinery to make the time cattle spend on the farm, and their subsequent output, optimal in every way.
This makes the the 'process' of farming sound very industrial, and sadly due to supermarket demand and at times minimal margins, many farmers are forced into 'optimising their output' and streamlining costs to the max. However, we are very lucky in the UK that our legislation, and the ethos of the British farming community puts the welfare of animals at the forefront of the farming picture.
This is something that the Waterperry Farm Shop agriculture team are particularly proud of. We are proud that our stock all happily graze the spring, summer & autumn months. They live a happy and healthy life with minimal stress and they are bred responsibly. Ultimately when the time comes, they end