Since moving to the Aberhyddnant in 1983 the Matthews family has worked towards running a viable farm whilst trying to conserve and promote biodiversity. Today Aberhyddnant is a family run, 220 acre organic hill farm in Crai producing quality lamb, pork, beef and free-range eggs whilst helping to enhance the environment. All our animals are reared to strict organic standards where welfare is the highest priority. We have a whole farm environmental policy under the Glas Tir scheme, which, combined with our organic principles, maintains the fertility of the land and creates a variety of wildlife habitats.
We welcome visitors to the farm by prior arrangement and are happy to spend time explaining how we work. There is also a signed farm walk for those with more time to spare.
The farm is home to a herd of 10 Murray Grey suckler cows which calve in the spring. The Murray Grey is a cross between two traditional native breeds, Aberdeen Angus and Beef Shorthorn. The cross was made in the valley of the Murray River in Australia and this gives the breed its name. Some of our calves are weaned at about 8 months and sold when approximately 2 years old, others we keep and add into the herd. We have a Hereford bull which means all the calves have white heads and range from milk to dark chocolate.
We have a flock of 400 Welsh Mountain ewes which are both hardy and produce great lamb. Again we lamb, outside, during March and April giving the stock the maximum amount of time to graze the lush organic pastures before winter sets in.
Over the past couple of years we have added 60 laying hens to our stock which seem well suited to the Crai weather. They live in small groups within our organic rotation and all the birds look extremely happy in their fox proof enclosure that gives them plenty of freedom to roam.
We usually have two or three rare breed pigs wondering around the woods, who welcome your vegetable peelings and are usually very friendly.
Visitors to our farm cottages are welcome to buy our home produced meat and eggs along with a range of other temping delights.