MKVT Farm & Guest House
Farm Name: MKVT Farm & Guest House
Owners: Mark & Karen Rodgers
Address: 1498 Mud Island Road – Glover, VT 05839-9795
Mark’s Cell: (802) 673-2072 about animal care, meat questions, ordering, delivery options and the Craftsbury Farmers Market.
Karen’s Cell: (802) 673-9961 about guest house, sheepskins, Facebook, Instagram and website.
Our Guest House is located in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom. In this rural country setting the emphasis is on wild beauty, great local food, healthy living, and sustainable agriculture. We produce and serve some of the highest quality, locally grown products available. We offer a wonderful place to stay with rustic elegance and four seasons of fun!
About MKVT FARM
“We treat our animals with respect, care and compassion ensuring them a happy life while providing our customers wonderful, safe, and sustainable products.”
Mark and Karen are continuing the tradition of family farming. Mark is a fifth generation Glover farmer descended from the Wylie and Anderson families that immigrated from Scotland in the early 1800s. Karen, a recent immigrant but long lost Vermonter arrived in 2015 from the Boston area where she worked in IT for over 30 years. Karen graduated from the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts in 2011 with a Chef’s diploma and has taken many Horticulture courses to complement her gardening passion.
We bought our 74-acre property in 2019 and became the 21st owners of record since 1840. We discovered that Mark’s relatives owned the farm from 1861 to 1894 when it was known as the Margaret Fleming Farm. The farm was last owned and operated as a dairy farm in the 1960’s but had since fallen into disrepair as a rental property. The barn and sugar house are both gone and the old farm house had been abandoned for many years. Hedgerows had grown to 60 feet wide, and the 17 acres of fields were marginal at best.
Mark began clearing a site for a new house with an excavator, dug the cellar hole, and buried hundreds of feet of hedgerows, old barn foundation and rocks. We were our own general contractors during the build and moved in Dec 31, 2019. We opened our two upstairs master suites for Bed and Breakfast stays in October of 2020.
We have been growing pasture raised beef, chicken, lamb, pork and turkey and hosting farm stay guests since 2015. Our meat customers are from all over New England, New York, Virginia, and Maryland as well as many good local customers. We have hosted guests from 25 states and 20 countries so far and incorporate our homegrown products, regenerative agriculture and amazing views into the farm stay experience.
All our animals are treated with the utmost care and respect, and we let our grandchildren and guests interact with them as we do daily. Belly rubs and head scratches are a favorite as we are very hands on with all the animals.
All animals are raised on pasture and have access to the outdoors all year round. Our pastures and hayfields are supplemented with organic fish hydrolysate with kelp (Neptune’s Harvest) and compost. We received a SARE grant (Sustainable Ag Research and Education) to study the results of the fish hydrolysate supplementation and the effects it may have on the soil microbiome, forage quality and nutritional value and the corresponding increases in CLA’s in our lamb, pork, and chicken (Conjugated Linoleic Acid is the potent naturally occurring anti carcinogen found in the greatest concentrations in ruminants raised on pastures. Lamb is naturally the highest of all).
We offer high quality meat and bulk ordering for beef, lamb and chicken.
Beef – We offer pasture and conventionally raised beef by the whole, half and quarter. The source of our beef is grown locally by farmer friends. We also offer individual beef cuts, burger and stew boxes. Now we have more options for both pasture raised and conventionally raised beef.
Pork – Our pigs are a mix of heritage breeds like Old Spot and Red Wattle that grow slower, are healthier and naturally produce a more flavorful and nutritious meat than commercially bred and grown pork. They are raised loose in group housing where they enjoy socializing with the herd. They have a barn and plenty of hay to keep warm in during winter and acres of grassy pasture to enjoy in the summer, complete with a pig wallow to cool off in on those hot summer days. Happy pigs make the best pigs and we are sure we provide the best for their well-being. As a result, our pork is tender, juicy, and flavorful. Our pork is offered as individual cuts, half and whole pigs.
Lamb – Our breeding flock of ewes are from dairy genetics and we mate them with meat producing rams like Luuk, our Texcel ram. The advantage is the lambs have the abundant milk supply of their dairy bred mothers, the gain potential of their fathers and they grow extremely well. Lambs are comical, curious and affectionate. They enjoy the comradery of their flock mates and our attention as we tend to their well-being daily. They are kept clean, dry and comfortable as they graze lush grasses all summer long. Our naturally grown, pasture raised lamb is healthy, nutritious, and delicious. We offer limited individual cuts and whole lamb.
Chicken – Our chicks arrive from the hatchery at a day old and we keep them in a warm dry brooder barn where they have easy access to fresh free choice feed and water. They have access to fresh cool water and green grass all spring, summer, and fall. Both broilers and layers enjoy spacious accommodations and fresh air. Our meat birds are very healthy and grow well with a focus on their well being which includes adequate exercise and diet protein for strong legs and an abundant supply of fresh grass and bugs which gives the meat more color, flavor and tenderness. We offer whole roaster chickens from 5 to 10 lbs but most are in the range of 7.5 to 8.5 lbs as happy healthy chickens respond and grow well with the care and attention we provide.
Sheepskins – Our sheepskins were all processed by Vermont Natural Sheepskins. VNS (relocated to Studio Hill Farm) is currently the only tannery in the country using a process certified organic in the United Kingdom. There is no organic certification for tanneries in the US. None of our sheepskins contain any toxic chemical residues odors or skin irritants. The colors are natural and beautiful, and have a light lanolin scent.
“Outstanding – your chickens are the best.” Sara M, Rutland VT
“Your bacon is the best I’ve ever had.” Chef Marcos, Cambridge MA
“I have to say you have turned me into someone who is actually enjoying pork for the first time. The flavor of the rib and loin chops is really outstanding.” Biz T, Montpelier
“Your beef is better than what I raised myself.” Dave W, Jacksonville VT
“We are enjoying lamb in Patagonia, but it is not as good as our MKVT lamb at home!” Margaret, Craftsbury VT
“Just unpacked all the beef, pork and chicken into freezers here in CT. Looks great as always. Thank you for all of your early morning feedings, care and attention you give every day.” Marcus C, Greenwich CT