Former dairy farmers with change of heart bringing oat drink to Midlands

Posted on the 29th January 2021

Many of you will have seen the BAFTA-winning film 73 cows, based on the truly uplifting real-life story of Jay and Katja Wilde of Bradley Nook Farm in Derbyshire. They could no longer face taking the cows who had lived on their farm to be slaughtered. Says farmer Jay Wilde “At some point, I couldn’t stop seeing the animals as individuals” and “I just couldn’t send them to their death at the slaughterhouse any longer.”

Some of you may have even caught their inspirational talk at our last Christmas Festival event. To catch anyone who is a little left behind, well, they have gone into oat milk production and with initial inspired input from The Vegan Society and Vegan Organic Network they transferred a large part of the herd to Hillside Animal Sanctuary in Norfolk.

They’ve now partnered with an organisation called Refarm’d, who help farmers to convert their land and business model to create viable opportunities to market and sell organic oat milk. The world is thankfully changing and demand for vegan alternatives is soaring. The Wildes’ shift comes at an opportune time: UK plant-based milk sales were up 28.3% last year and 32% of British households are now buying dairy-free milk, according to Specialty Food Magazine.

“The dairy industry is struggling. I believe that to help our farmers, we need to work with them and help them get out of this system. That’s what we at Refarm’d are trying to do,” says Starke. “Our model is conceived such that farmers keep their identity, their dignity, their farm, and their animals while being self-sufficient. We want to show what the future of farming could look like.” See more at: en.refarmd.com

It feels the perfect time for them to make their oat milk product available in reusable glass bottles to select subscribers through select shops, cafés, and other venues in the Midlands. We wish them the very best of luck with their new venture!

 

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