Tom, Carrie and Luke Andrews of Wholly Cow


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2023 Finalists: Tom, Carrie and Luke Andrews of Wholly Cow – Beef, Sheep and Butchery

Wholly Cow Farm is a great name that brings a smile to your face – and it also has a serious side, being a brand that is truly reflective of a circular farming system.

Tom and Carrie Andrews, together with son Luke, run the beef and sheep farm as well as an independent micro abattoir – all located just east of Cambridge.

The journey to creating their abattoir started with Wholly Cow’s meat being sold at a local farmer’s market before the team graduated to sales from a retail shop. In 2016, they bought a butchery and the abattoir was built in 2018.

Their vision has led to a circular farming system that provides food security for their local community while nurturing the land and animals they farm. It also helps to protect the farm’s bottom line.

The main driver of their business model is an aim to protect and improve the land, subsequently providing quality feed for their animals. Those animals then feed them and their community, plus create fertiliser that provides nutrients that go back into the land.

For the past 14 years, the Andrews family has been refining this system across their 182ha hill country property that features a loamy, clay-pan soil.

They entered the Ballance Farm Environment Awards to showcase their approach, illustrating that farming can be done in a way where each part of the process creates a positive flow-on effect.

Inspiration has come from what they have created so far in their business, and through the scope to take on new opportunities.

As they look to the future, they see themselves as a constant work in progress as they continually strive to repurpose everything created on the farm.

Tom, Carrie and Luke are the winners of the NZFET Innovation Award.


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