Commonwork Organic Farms Ltd began milking cows in 1978
The farm operates as a sustainable, agricultural enterprise, aiming to make best possible use of physical, financial and human resources. It also provides a valuable resource for learning and education - for visiting students, other farmers and for work experience placements.
Some farm facts and figures
The farm converted to organic status in 2000. It is certified organic by the Soil Association.
We employ 3 full time staff, 1 full time student carrying out a year placement and a part time mechanic. We also provide work placement experience for veterinary students and have long standing links with a number of agricultural colleges such as Plumpton and Hadlow College.
We farm 550 acres which support 240 cows who produce approximately 1.5 million litres of milk per year.
Most of the milk is sold to the Organic Milk Suppliers Cooperative (OMSCO). Some is sold to small businesses, such as Kappacasein Dairy (in South London) and Blackwoods Cheese Company (who are on site at Bore Place) who use it to make their delicious cheeses.
The dairy herd consists of 240 cross-bred cows, using 3 breeds, Holstein, Swedish Red and Montebeliarde. There are 110 other cows, a mix of heifers and calves which will become milking cows in years to come. All male calves are sold to neighbouring farms and reared for beef.
Calving starts at the end of August and continues to the end of January. Artificial insemination is carried out on all the cows by farm staff, using a variety of breeding stock. We also use a stock bull.
Being organic means the cows are only given antibiotics when absolutely necessary and on the advice of a vet. Instead, we promote homeopathy, natural treatments and disease prevention.
The woodlands, ponds, hedges and small grassland areas at Bore Place are managed to improve their value to wildlife. This is part of a whole farm plan which allows farming and wildlife to co-exist within day to day farm management. You can read more about our woodland areas and how we manage them here.