The Maritime Angus Association recently announced that Albert and John Ready of Covehead are this year’s recipients of the Maritime Angus Commercial Breeders Award.
The award recognizes a farm committed to sustainability and integrates Angus-influenced cattle into their herd. John and Albert have cultivated together for over 33 years. Although each family has its own land and livestock, they share equipment and work together in planting and harvesting.
They own 80 Angus influenced cows and they are quick to point out that there are a number of purebred Angus cows in the herd. They believe that Angus’ influence made it possible to successfully grade their finished cattle and the maternal traits they see in their cows.
Their cows are outdoors most of the year for shelter in a pole barn or in the woods when the weather is harsh. Cows graze most of the late fall and into winter, supplemented with haylage and corn silage. The Ready are able to share bulls since Albert prefers to calve in January-February and John prefers calves in May-June.
They feed and finish their calves with corn silage, cereals, haylage and, when available, cull potatoes. They almost all grow their own food. Their finished animals are produced under Certified Island Beef program protocols and processed at Atlantic Beef Products in Albany.
Albert and John participated in training offered by PEI Cattle Producers, including Environmental Improved Farm Plans, Certified Humane Handling, and the Verified Beef Plus program.
Albert Ready and his family live on a heritage farm. The land is where the ancestors of Albert and his brother John settled when they arrived on the island in 1823. The Ready people pride themselves on their heritage as farmers and landowners. almost 200 year old farm is evident when talking about their families, land and livestock.
Family is very important to both farmers. Albert’s wife, Margaret, is responsible for the management of the farm and provides additional help as needed. Their son Alec recently graduated top of his class at Dalhousie Agriculture Campus. He wants to apply his scientific training in agriculture on the farm. His parents salute his interest and enthusiasm. Alec’s plan is to eventually cultivate – possibly with John’s son, Owen. Clara, their daughter, works off the farm but is always ready to help when she needs help. John works as an electrical contractor. He and his wife Monica live nearby with their sons Tim and Owen and their daughter Amy. Owen has a keen interest in the cattle and sheep industries and is responsible for most of the day-to-day operations of the farm.
The Ready Farm has evolved and flourished over the past 200 years. With the next generation sharing the love of livestock and the land, they are ready to enter their third century of farming in Prince Edward Island.