For more than 150 years, the Sutcliffe family have raised cattle in the area.
Tyler and Ashley Sutcliffe are continuing the family tradition on the hundred acre farm Called Over the Top Cattle Company located between Millbrook and Pontypool. Tyler was born and raised in Janetville and Ashley comes from Keene and are joined by two small children who have begun to participate in chores around the farm. They hope to pass along their passion for raising beef to their children.
The primary breeds in their herd are Charolais and Simmental. In addition to selling beef directly to consumers, they raise purebred registered breeding stock. They also take their best specimens to cattle shows including the Royal Winter Fair.
The couple is committed to producing beef in an environmentally responsible way, and have made efforts to reduce their foot print and remain sustainable, operating completely off the grid through solar and wind power. They focus on maintaining the health of their pastures, improving their soil quality and preserving the habitat. While the primary food source for their animals is pasture, they receive mixed grains supplements in the weeks leading up to butchering. The animals are raised without growth hormones or antibiotics.
They sell beef in bulk directly to the consumer. All of it is government inspected and processed by a local butcher in the Kawarthas where it is dry-aged for fourteen days to improve tenderness.
Bulk orders of beef represent a half or a quarter of an animal. A ¼ of beef results in a hanging weight of 160 to 175 lbs of meat. This translates into roughly 130 pounds of meat because 15 to 20% of the hanging weight is lost through the butchering process as unusable parts are discarded. This volume of meat will take up five to seven cubic feet in a chest freezer.
Smaller orders are also available, with precise cuts and ground beef available and priced per pound. Free delivery is available on orders of a minimum of $50. Orders can also be picked up at the farm on the weekend.
Customers are encouraged to contact the Sutcliffes to discuss the availability of products and to line up delivery times. There may be a wait list or limited supply available.
For more information or to order some local, pasture-raised beef, visit www.overthetopcattlecompany.com. KG