Meet Your Local Farm: Miles Smith Farm’s Carole Soule
The co-founder of this Loudon farm talks about community and collaboration
The snow is long gone, the birds are chirping, and the trees are blooming, which means that spring is finally here. To help celebrate this season of extended daylight, rising temperatures, and delicious local produce, meat and flowers, we’re starting a series of “Meet Your Local Farm” profiles to introduce you to some of the farms around New Hampshire and the men and women behind them.
For our latest profile, meet Carole Soule, the co-owner of Miles Smith Farm in Loudon, where the mission is to provide locally raised meat that’s healthy for you and the environment. Read on to learn all about the farm and how they are creating and sustaining community in all that they do.
Tell us about the history of your farm.
Carole: “Miles Smith Farm is a 36-acre farm in Loudon, New Hampshire. The acreage combines part of a farm owned by Miles Smith in the 1850s and two neighboring farms. Most of the land is pasture. The cattle we raise are grass fed on the farm and on about 300 acres we lease around the state. All of our cattle are raised in the state of New Hampshire, so our meat is truly from New Hampshire. Because we can’t raise enough cattle ourselves, we buy animals from other local farmers who follow similar practices. We also work with other farmers on market and policy alternatives that protect and maintain biodiversity while supporting local farms that provide healthy, locally raised meat. We advocate for policies and practices that will sustain small family farms.”
What makes your farm special or different?
Carole: “We are here to serve our community by providing healthy, delicious local lamb, pork and grass-fed beef. The community can buy at the Loudon Farm Store, the Concord Farmers Market and online. We provide home delivery and convenient pickup locations in Manchester, Nashua, Belmont and Meredith.”
What’s the story behind the name of your farm?
Carole: “My husband Bruce Dawson and I have been residents of Loudon for over 40 years. We are dedicated farmers who believe we should all know where our food comes from. In 2000, we purchased Miles Smith Farm* with the goal to provide our customers with healthier meat options by raising Scottish Highlander Cattle humanely and sustainably. We have worked hard to restore the property to its original farming heritage clearing the land of all the brush and young trees.
After about a year of tractor repairs, we also decided that there had to be a better way to farm. We asked Miles Smith what he would do and he said, “Let the animals do the work!” It turns out the old farmer’s ideas still persist to this day, so his advice was taken to heart: The cattle do the work naturally. They till the soil with their hoofs and fertilize the soil with their manure all while eating grass and brush. We sometimes call them our “lawn moo-ers.”
We work with other farmers on market and policy alternatives that protect and maintain biodiversity, while supporting local farms that provide healthy, locally raised meat. We also are passionate about advocating for policies and practices that will sustain small family farms.
*Miles Smith first farmed here in the early 1800s. He was a stone mason by trade, helping the Shakers with their stonework. He now resides with his family in the cemetery on the farm and provides us with advice from his peaceful resting place.”
What are you best known for?
Carole: “Our amazing grass-fed beef and the witty weekly blog that I post online.
Tell us about what you have been up to this season. Do you have any new milestones, products, events, or anything exciting planned?
Carole: “It’s clipping season at the farm!
What keeps you passionate about doing what you do?
Carole: “Support from the community and our customers keep me passionate as well as our yearly ‘crop’ of calves which are due soon.”
What can people expect to find at your farmstand or farm store this year?
Carole: “Our specialty is 100% grass-fed beef Kielbasa and hot dogs. Yumm. Find other items here.”
Will people be able to find you at any farmers markets this year? If so, which one/ones?
Carole: “We are the Concord Summer Farmers Market.”
How can people best support you right now?
Carole: “Order online for home delivery and shipping. You can also stop by the store to shop Wednesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.”