We are Ben Nowakowski and Brook Alloway, the B&B of B&B Farms, a small family-owned and operated beef farm in Alpena, Michigan. Ben was raised here, where his grandparents kept a small herd of dairy and beef cattle. In his early years, he was begrudgingly tasked with helping on the farm. Ben did not intend to grow up and become a farmer, and yet here we are a few decades later! Although Brook grew up in the suburbs of Boston, she visited her grandparents’ farm every summer, which influenced her passion for farming. Ben and Brook married in 2017, and our son Gus and daughter Rosie followed soon after.
Our approach to farming is holistic; the wellbeing of the animals, the land, the famer, and the consumer are top priorities. We want to avoid issues, not just fix them; that’s why our animals are grass-fed and finished, our pastures and hay are non-GMO perennials, and our cattle are pasture raised (no confinement), antibiotic and hormone free. We continue to improve and incorporate sustainable and regenerative farming practices as B&B Farms moves farther away from conventional farming. Though our farming practices differ from those of our grandparents, we share a love for the land and the lifestyle.
The herd at B&B Farms is 100% Grass-Finished. We have Red Angus and Red Angus Cross. As of 2022, we have 22 Brood Cows and growing to 35, which is our maximum carrying capacity. We have two herds, the Brood Cows and the Finishing Bunch. Calves are born in mid-May on fresh pasture and remain with the Brood Cows for 10 months when they are naturally weaning. At this point, the calves are introduced to the Finishing Bunch. The two herds rotationally graze as separate herds during the grazing season and merge into a single herd again for the winter. All steers remain in the Finishing Bunch until they are finished (19-30 months depending). Most heifers also remain in the Finishing Bunch, but the best of the best become future Brood Cows and are reintroduced around two years old.
Our pigs root around in pasture, eat grass, fruit, and veggie table scraps, and (unlike our cows) grain. No antibiotics, no hormones, no confinement - just good old-fashioned pigs being pigs. Call for availability!