2017 Recipient: Bradley Farms

Aaron and Nicole Bradley, Bradley Farms

$6,000 — Pastured Pig Feeding System

Aaron and Nicole purchased a Feed Train mobile grain bin with a gasoline powered hydraulic auger to feed their 70 pastured pigs. Mechanizing the feeding of their hogs dramatically saves time—reducing labor costs by over 80 percent.

Aaron and Nicole go through approximately three tons of ration to their hogs every six to eight days. Before they purchased the grain bin, all of this feed was transported using five gallon buckets to an outdoor gravity feeder. They didn’t have adequate storage to protect the feed from rodents or inclement weather.

With the efficiencies, they can focus more on marketing, logistics, land management, herd management, record keeping and other responsibilities. They expect to increase the number of hogs they raise to meet growing demand.

“If my wife and I are not able to make our farming business a success, our multi-generational farm will end and our land will most likely be developed or used for other, non-agricultural purposes,” Aaron said.

Aaron and Nicole currently sell at five area farmer’s markets. Until now, they haven’t had the capacity to produce enough product to supply restaurants.

Their 135-acre century farm has operated on the same land for 115 years. “As a fifth generation farmer, our farming operation is one of the most important things to me and my family,” Aaron said. “Simply put, this is our way of life.”

In addition to the hogs, Aaron and Nicole also have 40 head of grass-fed angus on 70 acres as well as 350 pasture-raised chickens on 50 acres.

Visit BradleyFarmsNC.com and connect with them on Facebook.

Polk County

 

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