Boyden Farm is owned and operated by the Boyden family and has been in the family since 1914. The farm was originally a dairy, but the Boydens sold their dairy cows in 2000 and started producing beef, which they sell wholesale to stores and restaurants.
Boyden Farm raises grass-fed, grain-finished beef on about 900 acres, using non-GMO feed. This means that the corn and soybeans that are fed to the cattle are GMO-free varieties. In terms of feed, the cows all receive hay mixed with ground corn, okara (the soy byproduct of tofu production; from Vermont Soy), yeast (to help promote good bacteria in the cows’ stomachs, similar to humans’ probiotics), and salt. In total, corn only makes up about 30% of the cows’ diet. In addition, the cows go out to pasture in the spring and then are slowly taken off pasture in the late summer and fall as grass growth begins to slow. The cows spend winters in open barns.
The Boydens currently raise Angus cows and are in the beginning stages of breeding hybrid Holstein/Piedmontese cows. Piedmontese is a breed of cow originally from Piedmont, Italy that has a gene mutation that causes double muscling. This breed has a gene for inactive myostatin, allowing for unrestricted muscle growth. Double muscling results in beef that is lower in fat, is tenderer, and has more protein.
In addition to producing beef, the Boyden family also operates Boyden Valley Winery. You can find Boyden Farm beef in our Meat and Seafood Department! Learn more and see some photos from our recent Boyden Farm farm visit.