Mathew Lawrence learned the value of high-quality and sustainable ingredients from catering local weddings and cooking competitions. It quickly became apparent to him better flavors didn’t come from extra ingredients; they came from better meats and produce raised the way nature intended. To improve his culinary craft and curb his hunger for a better alternative to grocery store meats, Matthew and his wife Jesie decided to create their own sustainable, multi-species farm in Sylacauga, Alabama.
With 40 acres of grassy pastures and shady woods for their cattle to roam, and their own USDA inspected processing facility, Marble Creek Farmstead can ensure they deliver only the best meat with very little margin for error.
“It’s critical that we do our own processing,” Mathew says. “We want to make sure the absolute best food product gets to the customer’s table. Operating our own facility is difficult but it makes our farm different. We truly are craft butchery and craft farming.”
Marble Creek Farmstead is on the forefront of the regenerative agriculture movement. Mathew’s 100% grass-fed, grass-finished cattle spend their entire lives grazing on lush pastures that include a wide variety of nutritious grasses like bahia, clover, rye, dandelions, thistle, and bluegrass. Continually rotating the cattle to new pastures helps keep the soil rich with nutrients and eliminates the need for synthetic fertilizers and other destructive practices typically employed by factory farms. By utilizing regenerative practices, Mathew actually improves his pastures, which also increases the quality of his beef.
To help keep Marble Creek operating smoothly, the Lawrences share their successes with their employees. They focus on creating strong job opportunities for those who may not otherwise have them in the rural parts of Alabama. “Ultimately, this is about family and community in the context of animal-focused humane farming,” says Matthew.