Three generations of Spencer family run the dairy farm on the Campbellford Spring Brook Road in Stirling-Rawdon. They are Jack and Marilyn, Doug, and Bev and Steven and Meaghan with their daughter Hayleigh. They work around 300 acres, growing feed for the dairy cows, and have a large wood lot and several smaller ones.
You can view the video Learning about milk made at Maples Farm The Spencer family came to Rawdon in 1879 from Mancester, England. Wilfred Spencer was a councillor and Reeve of Rawdon. They opened their new barn in October 2007. It is a free stall barn, which can house 114 cows, with a state of the art milking parlour attached. The heifers and dry cows, which are not being milked, live outside or in the old wooden barn. The new barn has radiant infloor heating for the winter and there are screens on the sides of the barn for shade in summer to help the barn is cool. A dairy farm needs a lot of water. The Spencers recycle the water in the barn and use it three times. Manure is stored in a large lagoon before being spread on the fields. The Spencers have a nutrient management plan for the farm as well as an environmental farm plan. They keep the calves in groups and they can suck when they want on nipples and get acidified milk. To learn more about this system rearing calves The bob calves (bull calves) are fed on a diet of corn and concentrates and kept for nine to 10 months. They are sold for red veal at Hoards Station Sale Barn. Red veal is excellent, lean meat. You can buy it directly from the farm.
Doug Spencer is a member of the Hastings County Dairy Producers Committee and Bev is the agricultural representative on the Trent Source Protection committee. Bev works off farm as a nurse in Trenton as well as spending 60 to 100 hours a month doing of field and tractor work on the farm. She is an excellent cook and loves people and now her house is empty she invites people to come and stay at her bed and breakfast. She provides other meals with a menu, which features locally grown food. “I see a real market in the city with people wanting to came and see a real farm in operation,” said Bev. “I serve meals using local food, our own veal and dairy products.” She is a great believer in real ice cream not ice cream made with palm oil and coconut. She advises everyone to read food labels.