Hello Kickstarter Community! Founded in 2007 Dean Family Farm is located about an hour East of Cincinnati, Ohio where we naturally and humanly raise rare Red Wattle Pigs. We also raise chickens and our daughter, Rosie, raises turkeys.
What the heck is a Red Wattle Pig?
The Red Wattles are a rare, heritage breed that is listed as critically endangered by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy and they are listed on the Slow Foods Ark of Taste for their exceptional meat quality. They were once thought to be extinct but they found them running wild in Texas in the 1980’s and brought them back. The meat is redder than regular pork and it marbles like beef . Legend has it the Red Wattle was originally found on New Caledonia Island in the South Pacific, and now it is one of the few pigs raised in the United States that is not from Western Europe. The Red Wattle is the only pig left in the world that still has a wattle hanging from its jowls. The Red Wattle is considered critically endangered with an estimated global population of less than 2,000.
We need to desperately improve our facilities!
When we first started out with 2 girl and 1 boy pig our simple facilities were fine, but in order to make raising pigs economically sustainable and to meet our customer’s demands we had to expand our herd. Growing the herd has been a 2 year project and feeding the extra pigs while they have grown has been a major drain on our bank account. We now have 13 girl and 2 boy pigs plus their babies and our old facilities just aren’t good enough. We are loosing way too many baby pigs and because of our inadequate fences we have had some animals get loose and cause trouble with the neighbors. We have been awarded an Environmental Quality Incentives Program, EQIP, grant to improve our facilities but we haven’t been able to get enough money saved to take advantage of it and we are in jeopardy of loosing it. The grant also doesn’t pay for everything that we would need to really get the project done properly.
Rosie's Turkey Corner!
Turkeys are a new project that is headed up by Rosie, our 10 year old daughter. Rosie Dean wants to raise a heritage breed of turkey called the Midget White. The Midget White is listed as critically endangered by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy and they are also listed on the Slow Foods Ark of Taste. Even though she was only 9 at the time, Rosie, with the help of her mother and I, entered a $25,000 business competition to launch her turkey business. She even got on the news. Rosie worked very hard and in the end came in second place.
We will use the funds that we raise here to purchase and install all of the needed fences, watering and feeding facilities. We will also build a new building with stalls for our pigs to safely have babies. The mothers will be able to come and go but the stalls will be designed so the babies will stay warm and can’t get out. The stalls will also be designed with protections so the baby pigs don't get laid on and crushed by their mother. The barn will have an area to sort and hold animals, a loading ramp /dock and storage space / work room. For Rosie’s Turkey Corner the funds will be used to purchase breeding stock and an egg incubator. The turkeys and chickens will also be able to use the new drinking facilities and fenced areas. Any extra funds will be used to purchase a feed grinding machine so we can make our own animal food and a newer seed planting machine.
By contributing you will be helping to preserve the unique genetic information that is in these animals. Many years ago when my dad was a boy they raised Ohio Improved Chester Pigs. Since the OIC, like the Red Wattle, grows slower and doesn’t do well in confined, factory farms they all died out and the thing that made them special is gone forever. In addition you will be helping to preserve a small family farm for future generations because if this Kickstarter program isn’t successful I don’t know if we can continue.
Plus you can get a great thank you reward please check them out on the right.
Dean Family farm T-Shirt
Recycled glass suncatcher (example only, final item will have our logo)
Run the combine
Dinner at Orchids
Rosie was on the local radio program, Impact Cincinnati on WVXU, 91,7 to talk about her turkeys. You can listen online.
We talk about what we do and our kickstarter project here, here, and here.
Dean Family Farm is a naturally beautiful 102 acres located in Georgetown, Ohio and is less than an hour from Cincinnati. We truly are a family farm that’s run by Bill Jr., Beth, Adam, Rosie, Lily, and Bill Dean Sr. Our mission is to raise the best tasting, highest quality farm products for our table and yours.
Our specialty is the Red Wattle Hog. The Red Wattles are a rare, heritage breed that is listed as critically endangered by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy and they are listed on the Slow Foods Ark of Taste for their exceptional meat quality. They were once thought to be extinct but they found them running wild in Texas in the 1980’s and brought them back.
Our Red Wattle pork is so popular with some of the best restaurants in Cincinnati that we’ve had to grow our herd but now we have grossly outgrown our facilities.
When we started out with just 3 adult hogs and their babies 4 years ago everything was fine but now that we have almost 50 pigs and things are getting a little out of control. In the winter we would fill a shelter with lots of hay and our small herd would snuggle in to spend the winter. But last winter it got too crowded and we lost several baby pigs to the cold and being crushed by the other pigs. We also have a major problem with our fences. We frequently have animal escape and cause damage and our currently fenced area is too small to provide enough pasture. We have been awarded a grant under the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, EQIP, to replace a lot of our fencing and add livestock drinking stations. Working with the government has been great; they provide detailed plans and specifications to make sure the project gets done properly. But we don’t get the grant money until the project is completed and inspected so we have to have the funds up front. The grant also won’t pay for everything that we need like a new and improved shelter or all of the fence that we actually need. They also won’t pay for all the extra stuff like the thing to make the fence electric. We also have to cross this ravine and creek with the fence and the best way to do that would be to build a small dam and putting the fence across the top. That will also create a pond and natural wetland, but we’ll have to rent some earth moving machines to do it.
We hope you can see what we are trying to accomplish and will consider pledging to our project.
If you do you will be helping to preserve the genetic diversity that are in these animals. There is also a great selection of reward item to choose from. If you have any questions please feel free to ask.