McIvor Farm raises free-range, old-breed Berkshire pigs on 120 hectares of rolling hills of granite rock and grassy knolls. Jason and Belinda Hagan are the third generation to farm this land, which has been in Jason’s family for more than 100 years.
The husband-and-wife team started the McIvor brand in 2010. Ever since, they’ve been refining and improving their methods to find that balance between what’s good for the soil and what’s good for the animals. They focus on regenerative farming, with the pigs ploughing and fertilising the soil, before being regularly moved to a new patch (ensuring adequate grasses for the pigs to root around in, and leaving the land to rest).
They farm organically but aren’t certified, as the pigs’ diet is supplemented with grain (of which organic is hard to come by). They practise whole-animal butchery, working with an abattoir in Benalla, a butcher in Broadford and a smokehouse in Melbourne to create 35 small-batch products.
The farm gate is housed in the property’s original 1920s butcher’s shop, and stocks fresh batches of sausages, salumi, shoulders, ribs and hams, along with Farmhouse Cheese, eggs from the family’s chickens, Who Gives A Crap toilet paper and local garlic. The duo also appears at farmers’ markets in the region and supplies cafes, restaurants and grocers.
Explore Heathcote further in our detailed Out of Town to Heathcote guide.