Amie Herrera is Franchesca’s Dawn Farm’s full time (& beyond!) farmer. She does all the heavy lifting and takes charge of the entire farm, from tending to the pastured livestock to shipping out orders. Stop by during farm store hours to say hello and stock up on nutrient-dense meats and more!
After living and working in Latin America for ten years as diplomats, we were unexpectedly medically evacuated home in 2014 to help one of our children. With the farm previously purchased in anticipation of our future retirement, we came home for recuperation.
The farming adventure began with heritage breeds of American Milking Devon and Red Devon cows and Gloucestershire Old Spot pigs. We chose heritage breed livestock, animals never selected for production in Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs). At our Virginia farm, heritage breed animals thrive in their natural environment, producing flavorful and nutrient dense meats – food the way Mother Nature intended.
Our overseas eating experiences were very different from those in the US with some resultant healthy life-changing habits occurring. Frozen foods were almost nonexistent and canned food options were not much better, the ‘norm’ being fresh vegetables and meats. The impact of these limited food options is obvious – locals do not suffer from the same obesity rates as Americans. The American obesity epidemic has not hit Latin America.
We are excited to be your farmer, growing and sharing healthy choices for you!
Our Virginian farm is passionate about providing a great quality of life for our animals, which results in delicious, nutrient-dense meat. Our animals are rotated to fresh forages or pastured regularly. Cattle, goats, sheep, and chickens are moved daily to weekly depending on the needs of the particular pasture being grazed and the availability of water in that location.
Our cattle and sheep are born and raised on pasture. They only feed off of grasses and other forages growing in those pastures. They are supplemented with hay from local farms in the winter months and year-round with free choice minerals.
We carefully select feeds to ensure that our final products remain free of GMOs and soy. Our feeds are made of either grains that are certified GMO-free or grains and legumes that have never been genetically modified. We mix our own pig feed at the farm – soy is not a part of our recipe.
Our animals are never fed antibiotics. Antibiotics are only administered to animals who need it to treat injury or infection – we believe occasional antibiotic use is necessary for humane treatment and comfort of our livestock.
Animals on our farm never receive steroids or hormones for any reason.