Hedgeapple Blog

Dr. Barao is a graduate of Michigan State University where he received a doctorate in beef cattle nutrition and management. He also holds a masters degree in microbiology and a bachelors degree in human nutrition and biochemistry.

Scott held a faculty position in the Dept. of Animal Sciences at the University of Maryland for 20 years where he served as the state Beef Cattle Specialist and Beef Program Leader. There, he directed all beef research and education programs at the university's Wye Research and Education Center, the home of the historic Wye Angus herd.

Scott has been with the Jorgensen Family Foundation since 2006 overseeing the operation of both the foundation and the farm.

Dr. Scott Barao, Executive Director

By Scott Barao

Sept. 2017

Oct. 2017

Oct. 2017

Nov. 2017

Dec. 2017

One of the most frequent questions I get about the marketing of our beef is “What is the primary driver that brings customers to your market?” My answer, based on weekly conversations with our customers and some electronic survey data we have collected over the past 8 years, is twofold: our grass-fed and grass-finished farming system and our location (local).

There is no question that today’s consumer places significant value on buying local for a variety of reasons such as supporting local agriculture, a desire to see farmland kept as farmland, a desire for a personal connection to those who produce the food they buy, better traceability, the perception of improved food safety, a fresher product, and a smaller “carbon footprint” to name just a few.  There is also a growing desire for meat products raised in what is perceived as a more “sustainable” or “natural” type of farming system, usually identified by consumers as animals raised outside on open pasture and grazed forages. But, there is also a lot more to like about shopping for your beef at Hedgeapple Farm. Yes, I know we are not the most convenient place to shop, open just 3 days each week and offering only our beef. Even so let’s consider some of the additional benefits of taking the time to include a stop at the farm in your weekly shopping to-do list!

  • CUSTOMER SERVICE AND SELECTION: We can happily deliver the kind of customer service you likely can’t get elsewhere. We will spend whatever time is needed helping you understand where each cut comes from and how to select just the right cut of beef, in just the right serving size to match your dietary and family needs. We can help you understand the unique eating and cooking attributes of each cut of beef we offer and we can provide recipe information and cooking tips for every cut we sell. We also offer a selection of beef cuts that you will likely not find in other places such as the highly-prized Bavette Steak, Cowboy Steak, Sirloin Tri-Tip, Flat Iron Steak, and Soup Bones with actual meat to name just a few. You can email us at any time with your questions and the right answer will always be just minutes away.
  • SEASON-APPROPRIATE MONTHLY SPECIALS: We are pleased to offer several specials each month geared to the specific “cooking season” at hand. During the winter months you can save on your purchase of most of the slow-cooker and oven-roasts and even a steak or two for the grilling adventurous! We highlight Whole Tenderloins and Standing Rib Roasts around the holidays and we special different steaks during the heart of the grilling season. We even feature T-Bones and Porterhouse Steaks from Memorial Day through Labor Day. And, you can always request a special cut at any time and we will gladly meet your needs. Finally, we price our lean ground beef such that the more you buy; the more economical it is in price. In fact, we would challenge anyone to find a better price on all-natural, 100% grass-fed and grass-finished, 90% lean ground beef than here at Hedgeapple Farm.
  • YOUR FAMILY’S HEALTH AND WELLNESS: Our All-Natural Angus cattle are 100% grass-fed and grass-finished without the use of grain or growth-promoting implants/hormones and we never feed antibiotics to our cattle. Our cattle graze out in the open air across hundreds of acres of fresh, green, nutritious pasture composed of orchard grass and alfalfa. And, in the winter months we supplement their diets with high quality hay produced right on the farm. You can shop with confidence knowing that you are buying a beef product higher in both Omega-3 fats and CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid-a fatty acid associated with many health benefits including reduced cancer risk, reduced cardiovascular disease risk and better cholesterol levels).
  • RAISED RIGHT WITH TRANSPARENCY: Humane animal care is a hallmark of Hedgeapple Farm. We know that healthy, well-cared-for animals grow well and produce healthy, tasty, and tender meat. And, we know that we have a responsibility as stewards of both the animals and the land, to farm with integrity and transparency. Every piece of meat we sell will carry the individual animal’s ear tag ID number so we have full trace-back all the way to the cow and the bull that produced that tasty steak right here on our farm. We also take great care in the loading, transportation, and harvesting of every animal to minimize animal stress and anxiety. Finally, we work hard to manage all of our land including our 1-mile border with the Monocacy River to improve the soils, reduce water runoff, and protect and enhance the various ecosystems across our farm. We want to pass this land on to the next generation in better shape than we found it.
  • SHARING OUR KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE: The Jorgensen Family Foundation is a 501-c-3, non-profit educational foundation and Hedgeapple Farm is its centerpiece. The farm is a “teaching tool” used to develop, test, and demonstrate profitable and sustainable methods of grass-based livestock farming including all aspects of animal husbandry, pasture and forage management, grazing system management, and environmental stewardship.  In short, the mission of our foundation is to help fellow farmers across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic region be better, more profitable, and more sustainable farmers! Every dollar spent shopping with us in our farm market goes directly back into the work of our foundation for the benefit of countless other farmers and farm families!

    In closing, as you consider your next beef purchase I invite you to stop in and visit our farm and market. Give us an opportunity to exceed your expectations for beef quality and selection with exceptional customer service and integrity. 

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