Woody's Free Range Farm was born in 2013 by its founder Daniel Todd. Daniel originally hails from Peterborough in the UK, he moved to Australia in 2005 and then onto to New Zealand in 2013. After 17 years working for a Consumer Electronics company Daniel developed a curiosity for pig farming, and in particular the need to promote ethical free range farming pigs. And so the journey began.
Together with his wife Claire and dog Woody (the farm's namesake), neither of whom have any farming experience, they moved to an 80 acre farm in Manakau, just south of Levin, and began raising Large Black and Berkshire pigs.
The picturesque property is situated at the foothills of the Tararua ranges, against a backdrop of pine forest, with the Waikawa stream running through it.
By 2016, idyllic or not, the farm was not making any money and Woody's Farm was close to shutting its doors. Daniel realised that he simply could not grow enough pigs to create a level of turnover that paid the costs. As with all businesses in this predicament they had two choices, close or invest.
At the same time our old friends from the other side of the Tararua's, Longbush Pork, had secured investment to grow their farm. With their focus on farming they didn't have an outlet for their heritage breed Pork and it seemed only natural that with Daniel's background in marketing they could join forces and continue their joint goal of promoting and supporting the ethical raising of pigs for true free range pork.
In 2017 Woodys Free Range invested in a purpose built butchery and factory in nearby Levin and Longbush are now providing the majority of pork, running almost 1000 pigs at any one time.
By 2021 the butchery has grown and is processing more than 2 tons of pork a week. We supply large cuts and charcuterie to top restaurants, salami and sausage meat to high end pizzaria's and bacon to ethical cafes across the country. Our retail partners have grown to include Moore Wilson's, Farro Fresh, Commonsense Organics, select New World and Four Square and many specialist retailers all over New Zealand. Meanwhile we still provide a full range of meats, small goods and charcuterie direct via our online shop at www.woodysfarm.co.nz.
Seven years ago we set ourselves the goal of providing an ethical alternative for NZ consumers with 100% provenance of their meat. It's taken a lot of sweat, some tears, two concussions and a massive amount of money to get this far. We work hard, mostly seven days a week, but we do it because no one should be eating meat from battery caged animals and if we can help to spread that message we have achieved our goal. Remember, if a restaurant, cafe, supermarket or butchery cannot tell you the farm their pork is from then it IS NOT free range.
Thanks everyone for supporting us and ethical farming.