Rachel Risdon

Rachel Risdon

Brampford Speke, Devon

Dairy (grass-based)

DAIRY, DEVON: Rachel and her husband farm 300 cows on a grass-based, spring calving dairy unit on a 20-year tenancy. The holding was previously sheep and arable but was converted to dairy at their own expense. In 2020 they also began pasteurising and selling their milk through a vending machine direct to the public.

They employ one and half people on the farm and Rachel also works part-time as a farm animal vet.

Rachel grew up on a mixed arable and pig farm, while her husband's family farms a spring calving dairy herd in north Cornwall. It took the couple four and a half years of searching for and applying for farm tenancies all over the UK before they landed the unit in Brampford Speke.

She most enjoys looking after the animals and takes pride in doing this well, wanting them to feel comfortable around the humans tending to them.

The couple have also opened the farm up for Open Farm Sunday each year since 2017 and feel that farmers need to be featured more in news reports so that the public can hear their side of the story.

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Though she doesn't get a lot of time for it, Rachel enjoys sport. She and her husband have recently bought two double kayaks which they can launch into the river on the farm, with their two sons (aged nine and eleven).