About our beef
“The Red Ruby Cattle have an excellent mild temperament and are extremely well adapted to unfertilised grazing. Bred to withstand harsh winters, they grow more slowly and have natural ability to put on fat reserves. It is this natural growth pace and natural diet that makes the close grained, well marbled meat, British beef at its best. They simply produce the best beef that I have ever tasted.”
Much acclaimed by leading restaurateurs and chefs, Red Ruby Devon beef takes some beating in terms of taste, texture and tenderness.
That it is unmatched in flavour owes much to the Red Rubys’ ability to naturally lay down intra-muscular fat in the meat which produces the trademark marbling and finer texture.
Whilst “supermarket cattle” is normally finished in timescales as short as 12 months the Red Ruby takes just a little longer and our beef is often not mature until between 24 and 30 months.
This longer and more natural process of rearing, avoiding intensive farming methods, feed additives and bulking agents, ensures that the Red Ruby beef is probably the finest that one can buy today.
Our cattle lead peaceful lives and longer ones than many other breeds and the short trip to our local abattoir ensures that any potential stress associated with the process of beef production is greatly reduced.
And just as the process of allowing cattle to mature takes time, so too does the process of producing quality beef. All of our beef is hung for between three and four weeks before being expertly butchered and prepared.
Over the past ten years much has been done in restoring Mornacott to a serious farming operation.
The house and buildings, which had become run-down with many of the smaller buildings almost derelict, were the subject of a major rejuvenation project sympathetically undertaken with due regard to the English Heritage listing of many of the buildings.
The works have also allowed the flexibility to adopt the best of modern technology and the house and associated cottages and buildings are now heated with bio-mass energy from woodchip fuel sourced, sustainably, entirely from the land.
The land area of the farm has been increased to 650 acres through the purchase of several adjoining blocks and has also benefited from many reclamation works.
Five miles of overgrown hedgerows have been re-laid in the traditional manner, 12 miles of fencing replaced, 10 miles of ditches cleared, 6,000 tonnes of stone was used to make good rutted and dysfunctional farm tracks and 236 field gates have been replaced.
In conjunction with The Woodland Trust a tree planting programme has begun and three new native broadleaf woods have been created which will further enhance the land as they grow and mature over the forthcoming decades.
The River Yeo which bisects Mornacott was cleared of fallen dead trees alleviating much flooding at times of heavy rain and the old Tiverton to Barnstable railway line, closed in the Beeching cuts of the 1960’s, was resurfaced as a farm access track.
Today Mornacott looks much as it would have done in its heyday benefiting from the fabulous views which stretch from Exmoor to Dartmoor, classic North Devon plunging valleys and lush natural pastures in the most tranquil of settings yet conveniently close to the A361 North Devon Link Road.