Farming & Food
We believe that everything starts with the land – the soil. We believe that the soil is a living thing which must be nurtured and cared for as our greatest asset.
Whilst the growing global population has benefited greatly from increased food production through the application of synthetic fertilisers and herbicides, this has often come at a heavy price for our soils and our wildlife, and we believe for human health as well.
We try to farm in a way which works with nature rather than against it. We’re not always successful – farming always involves an intervention of some kind, and each intervention always has consequences, some good, some bad. So it’s a process of careful observation and a constant journey to try to better understand the consequences of our actions and how we can make better choices to produce healthier food whilst sustaining and enriching our soils and our ecology.
Our Farming Methodology
Whilst trying to get the best out of new technologies and analytic advances, our farming methodology is quite traditional; long rotations over perhaps seven or eight years, interspersing animals on pasture lays with cereals and beans. We try to work with nature rather than against it, respecting our animals, the crops we grow, and incorporating as much diversity as possible.
Our beef cattle are old English traditional varieties – Sussex, Hereford and Longhorn – varieties which grow slowly and are well suited to a purely pasture fed routine.
All our animals spend as much time outside as possible. We try to move both cattle and sheep regularly, to give the pasture time to recover, and make sure that essential and delicious perennials are not lost due to over grazing. Our pigs spend time in the woods, living as free and as natural a life as possible.
All our meat is butchered here on the Estate. Every part of the process of producing top quality meat requires detailed focus and respect, from the moment the animal is born at Madresfield, to when it is eventually processed in the butchery.
The ability to control each small step of preparation, right through to the point of cooking, gives us the opportunity to maximise quality and helps us in our aspiration - to produce the best possible meat from animals living a natural and healthy life in a balanced ecosystem.
We have partnered with the Hop Shed to produce three Madresfield beers, all made with Madresfield malted barley from the estate.
There is a Madresfield IPA, a Madresfield Pale Ale, and a Madresfield Lager, all available either by the keg or in 500cl bottles.
All our beer is made with the same Land First principle that we apply to our farming methodologies.
Madresfield beer will be available from February when the Madresfield Butchers and Grill in Malvern opens, either to enjoy on site or to take away.
The Madresfield Butchers and Grill restaurant opened in February 2024. We are looking forward to welcoming you to the restaurant where you will be able to sample Madresfield Estate produce, beautifully prepared by our Head Chef Harvey Perttola.