Our Story

It all started during November 2015, when Dad cut out an article for us [children] about sheep milking… something that seemed a bizarre concept for agricultural enthusiasts. This sparked an interest which only grew when we looked further into the nutritional quality of the milk. The sheep milk ticked all the boxes as far as health and nutrition went, but just as importantly the lower environmental impact sheep have compared to other farmed animals, such as cattle, was the icing on the cake for our attraction to the concept.

From here, after lengthy research and planning, we convinced our parents, Jeff and Shirley, that instead of winding down for retirement they should embark on a new journey… and so it began!

Our passion for the agriculture industry, the environment, nutrition and living life well, fitted perfectly with the concept of sheep milking and the desire to produce high-quality sheep milk products. We wouldn’t be able to sell products we don’t genuinely believe in. Further fuel for our passion is the fact that there are currently numerous pressures on the Ag industry. This has inspired us to become a part of the change that is needed to help secure the future of an industry New Zealand relies so heavily on. We want to create products which have been produced the right way, focusing on health, sustainability and celebrating working with animals – something we as humans have done since the beginning of time.

Meet the A Team

I don’t think Mum (Shirley) and Dad (Jeff) would have anticipated being persuaded by the three of us [children] to make such a change in their lives in this photo, but here we are.

Dad – top left – Was hoping to slowly wind down into retirement, simplifying management systems to allow for more time off… however, he now finds himself upskilling on and off-farm. Dad has always been a very hard worker and great at the practical side of farming. Technology can be his stumbling block and at 53 he would much rather do a day’s shearing than be stuck inside on the computer banging away because it’s “stupid” and “doesn’t work.”

Mum – Top right – self-taught accountant, she is responsible for keeping Dad and I under control on the spending front and tries to be a family mediator. She too was looking forward to slowly winding down into retirement, thankfully she has decided to give up those sleep-ins she loves so much, instead, she’ll be awake at the crack of dawn for milking.

Ben – Middle – Eldest child by age but not by maturity. From the get-go he has constantly been fighting off attempts from Baeley and I for the favourite child spot, more recently he has been reverting to dirty tactics like doing washing or cooking tea for our parents. He studied Human Nutrition and Sports Science at Massey Uni, now he is embarking on a masters in this field to ensure our products are of the highest nutritional quality.

Baeley – Bottom right – Middle child of the family and the only girl so naturally got her way. Everything she does is done with intent to outdo Ben and I. She has completed an Agriculture Science degree with Honours at Massey. She now works for PGG Wrightsons and is working closely with us to ensure we are able to feed our ewes top quality feed all year round.

Then there’s me (Cameron) – Bottom left – Being the youngest of the family competition to get one up on my older two siblings was always at the top of the list… this didn’t always work out. I have completed a bachelors in Agribusiness and Food Marketing and I’ve started my Masters in the same topic at Lincoln Uni. Since I’m the youngest it is only fitting that my role is to ensure things are done in a way that I’m happy with.

Our Farm

Fernglen farm has been home to us for over 22 years, in this time we have had a large focus on ensuring its sustainability – acting with consideration for future generations is key in our eyes. We have 60 hectares of high producing flat land, 75 hectares of terrace country, 237 hectares of hills and since our time here we have retired or planted 373 hectares of native bush and forest. We also have a property 4km down the road which is run as part of the same system. Here there is 120 hectares of flat country, 100 hectares of hill country and 200 hectares of retired native bush. We love this land and feel very lucky to have such diverse terrain making it suitable for many different animal species (wild and farmed) to thrive.

Sustainable Practices

The environment is important to us, our aim is not just to sustain our current environment, but to improve the quality in all aspects of our ecosystems. We take a lot more carbon out of the atmosphere than we emit, CO2 is the largest greenhouse gas and reducing this will help minimise climate change. To protect water quality we have slip proofed all of our hills by scatter planting trees so that soil doesn’t slide into waterways which would result in degradation of its quality. On top of this, we closely manage fertiliser and effluent application – applying it at times where there is minimal risk of any nutrients leaching into the waterways. We are also continually fencing off more streams to ensure stock can’t enter them. Mum (Shirley) and Dad (Jeff) won the Beef and Lamb Livestock Award at the Ballance Farm Environmental Awards in 2011, something we are all proud of.

Animal Welfare

All animals on the farm are treated with high ethical standards, working with animals is what we love doing. We have a philosophy of handling stock in a manner where they can naturally live healthy, only intervening if necessary to ensure our animals can continue to thrive. Our stock graze as they would in their natural environment – outside on pasture. We provide them with great shelter in the form of shade trees and shelterbelts so that when things get too hot or cold there is always a place for them to get out of the elements of nature. We have generations of farming experience combined here at Fernglen, the animals are in very safe hands!

Nestled along the stunning Wairarapa Coast, our sheep enjoy the wide expanses of grassland that look over the Pacific Ocean.

It takes a special sheep to produce the finest milk. That is why we have hand picked our girls. We have a range of breeds in our flock; East Friesian, Awassi, Coopwourth, Poll Dorset and crosses of the stated breeds. Each breed has different attributes and behaviours, we love the character our flock has.

Let us do the hard work so that you can enjoy the health properties of sheep’s milk regularly! As a family, we deliver to you, grass-fed, naturally nutritious products which are free of GMO’s, antibiotics and added hormones. Better for you better for earth!

We have taken the natural superior nutrition of our creamy sheep’s milk to the next level. We have added only natural ingredients to provide NZ with a great beverage which is ideal to be used as a drink to increase the speed of muscle recovery for athletes and active people. It is also a great breakfast option for those who push snooze a few too many times or who don’t have an appetite in the morning. Our drink is perfect for anyone looking to eat well and live healthy while not wanting to sacrifice the great taste of food!