Ayrshire Farm

Address: 21846 Trappe Road
Upperville, VA  20184
Hours:

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Phone: (540) 592-7018
Website: ayrshirefarm.com
Categories: Farm

• This large manor farm is located to the northwest of Washington, DC, and dates back to the early 1800s.

• It is owned by Sandy Lerner, one of the original founders of Cisco Systems.

• Foodwaze has visited and toured the farm to learn about their practices first-hand.

• This farm is devoutly committed to sustainable agriculture and the disruption of our world's factory farmed food system.

• The farm raise heritage breed cattle that are grass-fed and finished. They also raise heritage breed pigs and pastured poultry.

• The farm is Certified Organic and Certified Humane.

• Please read more about the farm under our Details tab.

 

 

This historic working manor farm covers an immense 800 acres in the beautiful hunt country of Northern Virginia. It’s about an hour’s drive to the northwest of Washington DC, and about 15 minutes from the charming small town of Middleburg.

The original plantation house on the farm was built in 1821. In 1847, a man names George S. Ayre purchased it, bestowing his name on the property that, despite a brief hiatus, endures today. In 1996, the property was purchased by Sandy Lerner, one of the co-founders of Cisco Systems Inc., and she still owns it today, setting impeccably high standards for sustainable agriculture.

Foodwaze first visited the property during the Loudoun County farm tour in the Fall of 2015. We have also visited the farm’s market in Middleburg called the Home Farm Store, which is as much an educational experience in sustainable food as it is a consumer experience.

From what we have been able to discern, Ayrshire Farm ranks among the upper echelons in its commitment to sustainable agriculture in the state of Virginia. The farm raises a wide assortment of heritage and rare-breed livestock, all on pasture, through natural and sustainable methods of animal husbandry. The importance of rare and heritage breed animals is to maximize their natural tendencies to graze and produce nutritious meat. The opposite of these breeds are the industrial breeds of today, commonly raised in Confined Animal Feed Operations (CAFOs). Even some sustainable farms resort to industrial breeds due to the extra labor involved in heritage breeds.

At Ayrshire, the largest inhabitants on the farm are the Shire horses, which are maintained mostly as show horses, but they also play a role by contributing their manure to the compost program and contributing their horse-power to other needed tasks on the farm. Next up are the cattle. The farm maintains a wide variety on pasture, including Holstein and Jersey dairy cows, whose calves are used for humanely raised veal. Three other unusual breeds of cattle found on the farm are the Ancient White Park, the Scottish Highland, and the Beef Shorthorn. 

Known as the Orchard pig, the Gloucestershire Old Spot pig free-roams the woods on the property, and as a rare breed pig produces quality pork for ham and bacon. Rounding out the livestock are the pastured poultry, including heritage turkeys. 

Ayrshire Farm is a Certified Organic and Non-GMO Verified Farm. It is also Certified Humane and Food Alliance Certified, which is an alternative sustainable agriculture seal of approval. Lastly, the farm is certified Predator Friendly, which means that it engages in farming practices while also nurturing the natural habitat on and around the property.

In addition to operating the previously mentioned Home Farm Store, the farm also runs the Hunter’s Head Tavern in nearby Upperville.