Paddock To Plate

Hayters Hill Beef: Byron Bay

Find out more about Hayters Hill and its farming family - as seen in Paddock to Plate! 

1) Surfing Farmer Brothers Dave (40 in May) & Hugh (42) Trevor-Jones grew up on their 350 Acre picturesque family farm on the escarpment overlooking Byron Bay called Hayters Hill,
2) The property has been in their mother Julie's side of the family for 5 generations, Hayter is the mother’s maiden name.
3) Hugh mainly looks after the free range Egg produce (2-3 thousand hens on moveable pasture pens) the eggs are packed on site
4) Dave looks after the Beef (150 cows plus calf’s) they move the cows to a different paddock every day to pasture- the cycle takes 1 month- the cows have probably the best views in the region.
5) They do a lot of value adding to the beef by producing a large range of gluten and preservative free sausages in the butchery on site.
6) Dave also has a dozen pigs which he is organically breeding as a trial business
7) They use a local homeopathic vet to keep everything natural
8) Dave & Hugh both have young families, 3 kids each.
9) They sell at the Byron farmers markets on Wednesday, Mullumbimby on Thursday, and in Bangalow on Saturdays. They also supply some local restaurants.
10) There is a colourful character butcher called Carl Matson (70) who comes to the property to help cut their meat & make their sausages- he is originally from Denmark and his skills are well known around the region.
11) Their parents, Allan (65) & Julie (66) also have a nearby Pecan farm (1 Acres- they will produce 10 tonnes of pecans this year)
12) Allan & Julie are also a good chat, both very pleased 2 of their 3 boys have chosen to continue on with the farm (another brother is a vet in the UK)
13) Julie has lots of old family photo’s dating back to the 1800’s & she is passionate about her family history on the land
14) Allan the Dad says even though he married into the land his legacy is the farm will be in a better state after he’s gone than when he found it (planting more trees etc.)
15) They are a solid farming family who happen to have a magnificent looking property.

Article About The Family From a Farming Journal

One pleasure of living in this area is that you can buy ‘low kilometre food’ and often meet the grower. Beef is one such food, available at Bangalow Farmers Markets from Hayters Hill Farm.

The Hayter family and their descendants have been farming on the hill overlooking Byron Bay since 1881. David Trevor-Jones, a great grandson of the original settlers, runs the beef operation on this 140 hectare mixed farm. You’re probably familiar with Hugh’s free-range eggs and enjoyed the delicious fresh lychees recently available.

All cattle are bred and raised on the farm in virtually chemical-free conditions. Whilst herbicides are used to control Camphor Laurel, homeopathic remedies are in use and an oil blend back rub helps against buffalo flies. Rotational grazing and natural fertilizers are used to maintain healthy pastures. Most of the 140 cows are first-cross Brahman by Hereford, which have great hybrid vigour and a lot of resistance to pests of this sub-tropical area, such as ticks and Buffalo fly. These environmentally-adapted Brahman-cross cows are a key to producing beef with minimal chemical input. No growth-promoting hormones are used (commonly in supermarket beef).

The cows are joined to Angus and Angus/Charolaise-cross bulls which impart meat quality and yield benefits to the end product. While they are largely pasture-reared, cattle receive a little copra meal and grain supplement just before slaughter, at around 10 months. This ensures year-round production of quality beef. The cattle are processed at Casino abattoir and the carcases brought back to Hayters Hill Farm. David has butchery there, where the small-goods are made and meat is cut and packaged.

The Beef
The carcases are aged for 2-3 weeks, hanging by the ‘tender-stretch’ method before butchering, to produce consistent, very tender meat. All your regular cuts are available, and carefully trimmed. I love the beef stir-fry strips that can be thrown straight into a stir-fry without any extra trimming! Corned beef is made in the traditional way, with just sugar and salt. It doesn’t look pink, like the supermarket version, because it doesn’t contain those nasty nitrites, but it has fabulous flavour. Regular customers will have noticed that David is expanding his small-goods range. With advice from Karl Madsen, a renowned Casino butcher, David is now producing four specialty sausage lines which are gluten and preservative-free and contain ‘secret’ herbs and spices he has mixed himself (no commercial mixes used here!).

So try some ‘low kilometre food’ – you know where it’s from and what you’re getting and it’s competitively priced. All true to label, chemical and preservative-free.


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