Westlands Farm, on the banks of the White River, has been a family dairy farm since 1867. Located between Sharon and South Ryegate, VT, the farm is owned and operated by David and Peggy Ainsworth, along with their son Luther. Luther will be the sixth generation farmer. The farm’s early history includes growing potatoes and raising sheep. You can still see rock piles where the potatoes were grown and the sheep were fenced. The farm is home to 45 milking dairy cows, 48 heifers and calves. Cows are housed in a free-stall barn. Forty-four acres of corn are harvested to help feed the herd. There are 90 acres of hay land for feed, and 120 acres of pasture for grazing during the summer. And the Ainsworths’ working farmland attracts hunters, hikers, x-country skiers, and fishing along the White River.
The Ainsworths have always been very involved with their community. Both David and Peggy are Justices of the Peace. They have served as town moderators and David is a hospital trustee. David is the chairman for the resolutions committee for Agri-Mark and is on the nomination committee for Yankee Farm Credit. Both David and Peggy serve on the Windsor County Dairy Milk Promotion board. During the Vermont Legislative sessions, David does the morning chores beginning at 4 a.m., and after breakfast he heads for the Statehouse in Montpelier to serve as a State Representative.
Daily chores start early. They milk and feed the cows and young-stock twice a day, and clean the barns twice a day. Routines include equipment repair, fence repair and maintenance, fertilizing, planting and harvesting of fields for forages for feed during the growing season. Every day on the farm is different, with new-born calves to feed and new challenges to face. In addition to producing milk, the Ainsworth family grows tomatoes, peppers, sweet corn, squash, potatoes, and pumpkins to sell at area farmers’ markets. They have a roadside farmstand, open daily during the growing season. Learn even more about Westland Farms by visiting Cabot Creamery Cooperative.