Vintage saltbush lamb
Pasture improvement and management is an important part of Tim Woods’ prime lamb business, and his approach to his 1,200-acre farm on New South Wales’ Central Tablelands has come from years of research and trials that have created a system that works.
Traditional agriculture is about the production of animals, but Tim’s changed his perspective on how he approaches this. ‘I use the lambs to manage the grass, rather than farm the lambs to eat the grass,’ he says.
Tim’s farming practise is based on the principles of permaculture and focuses on the concept of the whole ecosystem working together as efficiently as possible from beginning to end.
He compares the production of his prime lamb to developing fine wines in a vineyard. ‘I’ve used the science of land management to create the best environment and that creates the best lamb, which I then sell direct to the consumer.’
‘Less is more is the principle I’ve adopted,’ Tim says. ‘I’m running around one-third less stock than previously and I do everything by hand. It’s slower to grow the lambs out but it’s a better product at the end.’
Beyond the careful nurturing of his paddocks and lambs and unlike traditional primary producers, Tim oversees the whole production process of his lamb.
‘People are so much more conscious of where their food is coming from and I felt there was a need for a connection between growers and users without a middle person such as a supermarket. It’s a bit like wine that people buy from the cellar door of a vineyard where they meet the winemaker and can appreciate the local characteristics of the wine.
Customers can order a side of lamb online to their choice of cuts and Tim personally delivers the order to his customers. ‘I’m the face,’ Tim says, ‘I don’t have a truck driver, it’s all me.’ ‘I bring it in and put it on the bench,’ he says.
‘It’s a real example of how we can change our farming practices to not just use our land well, but to regenerate the land. It’s creative and smart.’
Order Tim’s succulent lamb online at www.nanimalamb.com.au