Get to know Denny Family Farms
Denny’s Grass-fed Beef is owned by John and Chris Denny and operated by the Denny family. John has lived on this farm his whole life. He is a 5th generation farmer on the farm in Pekin, Indiana. He learned to drive a tractor and care for livestock at a very young age. As a child and young man, John was a part of the family’s dairy cattle operation. After the dairy cows were sold in the early 1990s, John transitioned into raising beef cows. He has been raising grass-fed beef for a little over 10 years. He is also the pastor at South Liberty Church in Palmyra, Indiana. John and Chris have been married for 35 years. Chris works at Tele-media Solutions in Pekin, Indiana as a customer service representative. She is also very involved in the work on the farm. They have two daughters, Hannah and Heather. Both daughters and their families enjoy helping out on the farm. John and Chris have seven granddaughters who love to follow their Grandpa around on the farm and help whenever they can.
Denny’s Grass-fed beef is located in the beautiful hills of southern Indiana just outside the small town of Pekin. We are located approximately 30 miles northwest of Louisville, Kentucky. The Denny family owns 80 acres and rents an additional 220 of neighboring farm land.
Our original herd of beef cows was a mixture of Black Angus, Charlioas and Hereford. In the last several years, we have added Red Angus to the cross. In 2013, we bought our first Red Angus bull from Pharo Cattle Company in Colorado. These bulls have been specially selected for superior grass finishing as well as ease in calving. At this time, we have about 75 cows and 2 bulls. We have two calving seasons; one in the spring and one in the fall.
We raise grass-finished beef. Great efforts are made to raise and harvest cattle that are not only 100% grass-fed (no grain whatsoever), but are also grass-finished. The term grass-finished simply describes the condition of the animal at the time of butchering. A grass-finished beef has just the right balance between meat and fat which in turn produces an end product that is well-marbled, tender and flavorful. Here are some of our specific practices:
Our cows pasture throughout the summer in a rotational grazing system. During the summer, we harvest a mix of grasses and legumes as chopped haylage and store it in silage bags to feed to our cattle during the winter. This allows the cattle to enjoy high quality forage all through the winter months and is the key to being able to harvest and sell quality beef in the winter months.
We do not plant GMO seeds or spray Round-Up or other chemicals on the land we use.
Our cattle are given free access to mineral and sea salt year round. We do not use growth hormones or feed antibiotics to enhance growth and prevent disease, but we continue to focus on animal husbandry practices and genetics that improve the overall health of our cattle.
Our concern for the health and well-being of our animals leads us to the conclusion that if the need arises, an animal will be given an antibiotic. In the event that this happens, the treated animal will be removed from the grass-fed beef program.
We are currently working to improve the quality and availability of our water supply by installing automatic waterers, using gravity flow waterers and by fencing the cows out of the ponds. This helps to improve the overall health of our cattle.