grass fed beef

Know Where Your [Pet] Food Comes From!

Many people seek out Cherry Grove Farm because they understand the importance of being connected to their food source. Wouldn’t it be amazing to also extend that right to your four-footed friends at home? Now you can! At Cherry Grove, we are now offering local and grass-fed dog food alternatives for $3.99/lb:


  • Beef Tongue
  • Beef Liver
  • Mixed Bones
  • Beef Heart


When we send an animal to the butcher, we get just about everything back, which includes things most people do not find palatable. Although you might not imagine yourself eating beef heart, your dog would actually love it! Think about it—wolves in the wild don’t have access to can openers.



There are many benefits pets can gain from a raw diet: a shinier coat, cleaner teeth, better skin, and smaller stool. Amanda, one of our newest employees, successfully switched her finicky cat, Flip, to a raw diet when he was 12 years old. He was overweight, had a scraggly coat, and was generally a grump. Although Flip’s crankiness never subsided, his weight balanced out, he had less dry skin, and his fur became sleek and glossy. He is still thriving on a raw diet 4 years later! Amanda also transitioned her two younger cats and her 3-year-old golden retriever to the diet, and they thank her twice daily for it.




We absolutely recommend consulting your veterinarian for specific recommendations regarding the diet of your particular furry friend. All animals are different, and their diets must meet their individual nutritional needs. We are not trained veterinarians here at Cherry Grove, but we can offer you some basic guidelines to get started.

Whether you plan on starting your pet on a complete or partial raw diet, the change must take place slowly over time. Not all pets (particularly cats) immediately take to new food, so try to gauge the transition based on how your pet reacts. Additionally, pets with digestive issues may need a slower transition.



Your pet’s stool is a great barometer for how he or she is handling the dietary change. At first, their stool will be a little soft and loose, but it will eventually be become smaller, firmer, and less smelly. Here is one way you can approach the transition:


Days 1-3: Feed a mixture of 25% raw food and 75% current food at each meal.

Days 4-7: Feed raw food in the morning and current food in the evening.

Thereafter: Feed raw food for both meals only after your pet fully accepts the new food and their stool is smaller, harder, and less odorous. If your pet’s stool is still soft or loose at this point, take the transition more slowly.


Once the transition is complete, pets should be consuming approximately 2.5% of their total body weight per day. For example, a 50-pound dog should get 1.25 pounds of food per day (or a little over 0.6 pounds per feeding). This percentage is based on maintaining weight, and can be increased to 3% for underweight animals or decreased to 2% if weight loss is necessary.


We recommend storing your raw dog food in the freezer and thawing on an as-needed basis. It is also a good idea to rotate proteins and to switch between organ and muscle meat. Dogs need variety just like people!


Canned pet food is specifically formulated to include all necessary nutrients. When switching to a raw diet, it is important to retain that nutritional balance. A wholesome raw diet includes muscle and organ meat, bones, raw eggs, ground eggshells (for calcium), veggies, fruits, and even dairy.




There is always a risk of bacterial infection from improperly handling raw meat. Always be sure to wash hands often and disinfect counter tops, utensils, and food dishes. Although this risk is present with a raw diet, it has also proven to be a huge problem in commercially processed pet foods. Careful and informed handling greatly reduces the risk of infection in a raw diet, and it puts the pet owner in control instead of a manufacturing facility.


There are countless resources with more specific information about raw diets for pets. Here are a few that we recommend, so you can decide for yourself what is best for your pet:



It may seem like a lot of research and work, but after the initial transition it becomes second nature. Our furry friends give us so much love, they deserve the extra effort! We hope that we will greatly improve the health of your pets by offering local and grass-fed alternatives at Cherry Grove Farm!


Photo Credit: Stephanie Spock

Where’s the Beef?

It’s coming! We will be getting all cuts of beef in, including the steaks and ground beef you have all been patiently awaiting. Monday, July 9th, we will be picking up a cow from our butcher, Bringhurst Meats, located in Berlin, NJ. Bringhurst is the last family owned butcher in New Jersey, so they approach their job like it is a work of art instead of a (dis)assembly line.  We have to reserve dates far in advance at Bringhurst, because the animals we send are allowed to walk in on their own accord instead of being poked and prodded. This makes the process much less stressful for the animals and affords them the respect they deserve for providing us with nourishment.



While we no longer raise meat cattle at our farm, we still source our beef locally from River Bend Farm in Far Hills, NJ. River Bend provides us with registered Angus beef, which of of superior quality and tenderness. The cattle is also raised on pasture, which affords them a diet of primarily fresh grasses. To top it off, River Bend does not use any hormones, antibiotics, or steroids, and you can taste the difference!


In other news on our farm, our Garlic Peppercorn Jack is almost gone for the season! We are on the last wheel of this flavorful play on charcuterie, so be sure to stop by the store to grab a slice before it’s all gone! Don’t worry—even though this Jack is hitting the road, it will be back again next fall.



We are making way for our summertime flavor: Full Nettle Jack! It will be ready for purchase mid-July. We found a more local source for stinging nettles this year, too! Instead of having them shipped from Europe, North Slope Farm will be our new provider. North Slope is an organic farm located in Lambertville, NJ. We are grateful for the opportunity to support our neighbors and lower our carbon footprint!


(Grass-Fed) Beef 101

This is a great, helpful, easy graphic to help everyone understand why it is so
important to eat grass-fed anything! Take a look at the grass-fed beef facts below.
Eat Local, Know Your Farmer Know Your Food – It’s That Simple.
Our Grass-Fed Ground Beef Sale Ends This Saturday! The Farm Store Will Be Open
Thursday, Friday & Saturday (11-5pm).

Stock up on Grass-fed Ground Beef & Our Grass-Fed Cheese and make a nice warm meal for your family tonight – Our Beefed Up Mac N’ Cheese (all grass-fed) Recipe


Beef Infographic

Source: FrugalDad


Local & Grass-Fed + a recipe

At Our Farm Store Now!

Stop by our Farm Store and take advantage of this wonderful grass-fed ground beef sale, while supplies last.  Locally grass-fed beef is usually much more expensive than the ground beef you can get from the supermarkets, because it locally raised and fed the right way off organic certified pastures.

This Sale Ends: April 14th 2012 – Stock Up While You Can!!

Stock your freezer up for the New Year! Eat right, eat local, and know where your food comes from. Please enjoy our fast and delicious recipe below for a local, stove top, beefed-up Mac and Cheese.

Locally Beefed-up Mac and Cheese 

Created by Our Cheesemaker Samuel Kennedy

1 onion, diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup Jersey Fresh Tomatoes, chopped (available at the Farm Store)

1 package Cherry Grove’s grass-fed ground beef (available at the Farm Store)
1/2 pound Severino elbow macaroni (available at the Farm Store)

4 tablespoons butter
2 eggs (available at the Farm Store)
6 ounces evaporated milk
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Fresh black pepper
3/4 teaspoon dry mustard (optional)

10 ounces your favorite Cherry Grove Farm Cheese, shredded (available at the Farm Store – we suggest Garlic Peppercorn Jack or Herdsman for a kid friendly meal or impress your friends by using Toma mixed with some Havilah )

In a heavy sauté pan, sauté the onion until translucent, add the beef and a little salt and break down with a fork until browned and fully cooked. Add the tomatoes and cook for about 5 minutes. Set aside.

In the meantime, in a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta to al dente and drain. Return to the pot and melt in the butter. Toss to coat.

Whisk together the eggs, milk, hot sauce, salt, pepper, and mustard. Fold in the meat- tomato mixture. Stir into the pasta and add the cheese. Over low heat continue to stir for 3 minutes or until creamy – Enjoy your locally Beefed-up Mac and Cheese.


1902 - Family purchased farm

1910 - Leased land to dairy farmer

1987 - Hamill Brothers inherit farm

2002 - Started as a family business

2003 - Started a beef herd, laying hens, and pigs

2004 - Added sheep and attained organic certification of pasture land

2005 - Added dairy herd and began making fresh cheeses like mozzarella

2006 - Built aging caves and began making aged cheeses

2012 - Grid Magazine’s Cheese of the Month (Nov – Full Nettle Jack); Finalist at the Good Food Awards (Toma)

2013 - Won 2 blue ribbons from the American Cheese Society(for Buttercup Brie and Lawrenceville Jack Reserve); Added second cheesemaker

2014 - Broke ground on additional aging space and began process of getting AWA certification for our chickens