CHARLESTON, Maine (WABI) - Do you really know where your beef comes from?
A farm in Charleston works to raise high quality grass-fed beef, and many of their customers are reaping the health benefits.
"They're so peaceful. They're beautiful,” said Dan Kaplan of Heartstone Farm in Charleston. “They're just nice animals."
Dan Kaplan, or "Farmer Dan" as he calls himself, has always held on to the dream of becoming a farmer.
In 2014, his dreams came true when he opened Heartstone Farm in Charleston.
Their goal is to raise the highest quality of grass-fed beef.
"I think cattle are just a great fit with this kind of land in Maine,” explained Kaplan. “There's so much grass here, and cows are a great way of taking the grass and turning it into wonderful food for us.”
"We buy cattle from local people in the state. We use what nature gives us, what God gives us in the grass and the sunshine and the nice temperatures that we have here. We can grow a lot of grass for six months out of the year,” said Fred Sherburne of Heartstone Farm.
Heartstone Farms delivers beef to over 300 families across the country.
Their customers want to know where their food comes from, especially those who are suffering from chronic health issues like diabetes or heart conditions.
"Getting kind of natural food into your diet and particularly grass-fed beef really does improve people's health” said Kaplan. “So, many of our customers come to us because they are having a health issue, and they want to change their diet and when they start eating our beef, and I don't want to claim that it is a miracle cure, but it does make a difference for them."
There's no antibiotics used at Heartstone Farm, and their cows graze in their pastures with no confinement or mistreatment.
"People knowing that the animals are humanely raised and humanely handled is a large part of it for me in making sure that the animals don't ever get worked up,” explained Percy Lorette, who has been working at the farm for just a few short months.
There's also no middleman at the farm.
Dan and his crew have been adamant about developing relationships with their customers and their families in hopes of inspiring them to start their own farms in Central Maine.
"Who is the farmer? Is it some corporation that has 10,000 cattle that they're going to process today, or is it Farmer Dan in Maine that's going to kind of process a few and know your name? I think that people really like that. They want to connect with that,” said Kaplan.
Beef can be bought right at the farm on Paine Road in Charleston.
You can also buy beef and other products on their website: https://www.heartstonefarm.me/