Dawnbreaker Farms is sustainable family farm located on 20 acres of mixed pasture, garden and forest in northern Orange County, North Carolina. The farm produces high quality meat, eggs and produce for local families, restaurants and grocery stores. Our products can be found at the Eno River Farmers Market in historic downtown Hillsborough on Saturdays and Wednesdays at the Person County Farmers Market. We strive for sustainability in all facets of our operation. The farm produces food for the local population and in turn it provides a home and a livelihood for us, the farmers. It provides a habitat for a great diversity of wild animals, birds, reptiles and amphibians as well as all of our various livestock, many of which are endangered heritage breeds. We do not use any chemically based fertilizers or pesticides on our farm and our only herbicide are our trusty hoes. Our soils are nourished by rich compost made here on our farm and spread by hand. We also use a rich tapestry of complementary crop rotations that utilize beneficial plant relationships and cover crops which add organic matter and nitrogen to the soil. These methods require a lot more work than a conventional farm but we believe the positive return from utilizing biological systems vastly outweighs any benefit from synthetic quick-fixes. Plus, it’s never a bad idea to do some good old fashioned hard work outdoors.
Using multi-speciated mob grazing and a leader follower system we mimic natural systems to enhance the fertility and diversity of our land. Sheep and pigs mow down the grass and poultry follow scratching in the manure, eating flies, ticks, lice and other bugs that disturb humans and livestock alike. Pigs are moved throughout the woods turning over leaf duff, eating bugs, worms, roots and green foliage. This temporary disturbance exposes the soil's seed bank to light and air and transforms our otherwise lifeless understory into a environment that is alive with verdant growth. Our success is measured not only by the amount of money we make but by the holistic health of our livestock, fertility of our soils, health of our overall ecosystem and the abundance and diversity of both domestic and wild trees, plants and animals. All of our animals have been selected for their adaptability to the humid Southeast, ability to thrive with little to no inputs and perhaps most importantly - flavor.