Situated on nearly 300 acres of preserved land on the Barre-Oakham border, Renaissance Farms was created from lands belonging to several early farmers. At one time, it was owned by Vernon Willey, Lord Barnby the owner of the Barre Wool Combing Company, and was a summer playground for his family and friends, complete with a cricket pitch. More recently, it has been home to dairy cattle and dairy goats, and was also used to grow landscaping trees.
Renaissance Farms is now home to a growing herd of Oberhasli dairy goats as well as chickens, Icelandic and Shetland sheep. We are planning to bring back heritage hogs, turkeys and geese. We also graze a herd of Red Devon cattle for Rotokawa Beef.
We grow only heirloom varieties of vegetables using organic practices. We don’t use chemicals of any kind. We carefully choose varieties that are particularly suited to our climate and growing conditions. This, along with companion planting and wise spacing help keep pests and disease to a minimum.
In late winter and into early spring, we tap our black birch and maple trees to make syrup. We have the only large-scale commercial birch syrup operation outside of Alaska!
Finally, we restored the existing dairy and modified it to work for our goats. Soon we will apply for our license to sell milk, and begin making cheese, yoghurt, and more.