The Burns family have a diversified farm about two hours outside of Pittsburgh. They grow fruits and vegetables, but dedicate an increasingly larger portion of their land to grass, which feeds their cows, sheep, pigs and chickens. Pete Burns, who initiated the transition to more animal-based farming, apprenticed with Joel Salatin on Polyface Farm and brought many of the practices back to Heritage Farm. They focus on keeping a healthy pasture, which feeds the cows and sheep as they are rotated through small paddocks. The chickens follow the cows and sheep in the paddock to manage unwanted pests. The pigs make compost in the barns and root through the dirt, managing undesirable plants and pests.
What They Raise
• pastured chicken
• pastured eggs
• pastured turkey
• 100% grass-fed beef
• 100% grass-fed lamb
• pastured pork
How They Do It
• pasture-based with rotational grazing
• lambs and cows are never fed grain
• all feed is non-GMO
• some feed is grown on the farm
• no hormones or subtherapeutic antibiotics
• no farrowing or gestation crating of sows
• no beak-trimming (poultry), tail-docking, or teeth-clipping (pigs)
Where to Buy
• Pittsburgh restaurants: Cure, Legume, Casbah, Bar Marco, and Sienna Mercato.
• Local supermarkets: East End Food Co-op and the Market Street Grocery
• Farmers markets in Upper St Clair, Clarion and St Mary's
• Heritage Farm buying club: Email tara(at)burnsheritagefarm.com and request to be added to the weekly email list.
For more information about Heritage Farm, visit their website at www.burnsheritagefarm.com.