When Armin and Amanda Lieth acquired the land in the mid-1990s there were just three acres of pasture on the property. Over the last 15 years, they have carefully created more than 40 acres of additional species-rich pasture at Beechcrest Farm. The mile-long driveway is named Blissenbach, a nod to the family’s German land of the same name, and the house, barns, well houses and all outbuildings have been built in the German ‘fachwerke’ style. The farm includes two barns (both constructed out of timber from the farm), a riding arena, trails and over 50 acres of pasture where horses and Certified AWA pigs and cattle are sustainably managed in rotation.
Beechcrest Farm Certifications
AWA / BQA
Armin and Amanda chose to pursue AWA certification because the third-party verification aligned with their high-welfare and sustainable farm management practices. “Since we knew from day one we were going to raise the animals in a way that matched AWA’s farm standards anyway, asking for this verification seemed quite natural. The AWA logo also assures Beechcrest Farm’s customers that they are purchasing a high-quality, high-welfare product, something important to Armin and Amanda. “We hope that getting a formal certification demonstrates to the public that we are committed to keeping all the animals on the farm raised to this industry standard. “At any time, folks can come out and see for themselves what they are eating and how it has been raised.
AWA – Certified Animal Welfare Approved
“Acknowledged by Consumer Reports as the only “highly meaningful” food label for farm animal welfare, outdoor access and sustainability, Certified Animal Welfare Approved by AGW (AWA) is an independent, nonprofit farm certification program—and now one of the nation’s top 5 fastest growing certifications and label claims.”
“Certified Animal Welfare Approved by AGW is the only label that guarantees animals are raised outdoors on pasture or range for their entire lives on an independent farm using truly sustainable, high-welfare farming practices. It is the only label in the U.S. to require audited, high-welfare production, transport and slaughter practices, and has the single highest impact on consumer purchasing of any food label, according to The Hartman Group.”
BQA – Beef Quality Assurance
“Beef Quality Assurance is a nationally coordinated, state implemented program that provides systematic information to U.S. beef producers and beef consumers of how common sense husbandry techniques can be coupled with accepted scientific knowledge to raise cattle under optimum management and environmental conditions. BQA guidelines are designed to make certain all beef consumers can take pride in what they purchase – and can trust and have confidence in the entire beef industry.”
“BQA programs have evolved to include best practices around good record keeping and protecting herd health, which can result in more profits for producers. When better quality cows leave the farm and reach the market place, the producer, packer, and consumer all benefit. When better quality beef reaches the supermarket, consumers are more confident in the beef they are buying, and this increases beef consumption.”
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