GRANTVILLE egg farm Freeranger Eggs has received international recognition as having one of the top 20 egg industry internet blog sites in the world.
Internet content reader Feedspot has given the South Gippsland Freeranger Eggs blog the accolade.
Anne Westwood, who runs the farm with her husband Phil said: “last year our blog was in the top 50, now we are top 20”.
“Who knows, next year ours might be the best egg blog in the world – just like our eggs are the best.”
The farm uses no colouring additives in the chickens’ feed, unlike an estimated 90 per cent of more of Australian egg producers.
Phil and Anne operate the Freeranger Egg farm with their Maremma dogs to protect the birds. The eggs are collected by hand, graded and packed every day on the farm ready for delivery to restaurants, shops and direct to customers at places like the Koonwarra Market on this Saturday.
“We don’t send off our hens to make soup when they finish their first laying season. We keep them longer and find homes with local people who want chooks for their backyards. They lay happily for another three or four years and often longer,” said Phil.
Freeranger Eggs is a 200 acre diversified beef, sheep and chicken farm at Grantville, part of the Mornington Peninsula and Western Port Biosphere Reserve.
“We have implemented strategies aimed at sustainable land use in conjunction with biodiversity conservation on the property and adjoining land.
The farm has Bass River frontage and forms part of the only riparian forest left on the river.
“Our property is a vegetated link between the Grantville Flora & Fauna Reserve and the Bass River and is ecologically vital for the local survival of a variety of species.
“Amongst animals living here are Powerful Owls, Barking Owls, Lace Monitors, Mountain Brushtail Possums, Swamp Antechinus, Potoroos and Bandicoots. Sixty acres of the property are protected by a Trust for Nature covenant and the farm is also part of the Land for Wildlife Scheme.
“The property is demonstrating that primary production can be commercially viable without compromising ecological values and that cost-effective farming, environmental protection and enhancing species biodiversity are not mutually exclusive.
Production includes chemical-free beef and lamb, wool for hand spinning and free range eggs from hens in mobile roosts and protected from fox attacks by Maremma guard dogs. Regular movement of the roost houses which are sheds with slatted floors on skids, provides natural nutrients to maintain lush grass growth with no additional inputs, also encouraging the spread of native grasses.
“Activities on the property have been designed to minimise off-site impacts. All creeks lines are vegetated to maintain water quality run off into Bass River and our management ensures the long term sustainability of our farming activities.”