At Sidehill Farm, we are constantly improving our systems, so that they flow more directly from the examples we see in nature. We resist quick fixes like antibiotics and organically approved pesticides that ameliorate short-term problems while hiding or creating deeper issues. We select for plants and animals that balance productivity with ruggedness and adaptability. We work with and foster the various microclimates found on our farm. We are mildly obsessed with soil and the density of life within it. We select and develop technologies that respect natural systems and use energy efficiently. And we are amazed at how much better we can always do, how much we have to learn.
Food labeling is confusing and complicated, and it is hard to know what to believe, and who to trust. For that reason, all of the land that we manage for the dairy is certified organic. Everything that the cows eat is certified organic - meaning they graze exclusively on organic pastures during the growing season, and eat certified organic hay and baleage (those giant marshmallow bales) in the winter. We also feed a small amount of organic grain as a treat at milking time. If a cow has health issues, she is treated with herbal and homeopathic remedies, and a lot of TLC, and we find the girls respond best to those treatments.