Your name(s): Bob & Darlene Livingston
The name of your farm: Mahoning Creek Farm
Where is your farm located? Rt. 210 at the intersection of W. Creek Rd & Alabran Rd.
How long have you been farming? All our lives, Bob and I were both born and raised on livestock & crops farms and actively worked on our families farms. Bob bought our first Angus cows the day before he bought my engagement ring, but that’s another story!
We’ve farmed all our lives.
How long have you been selling at the Indiana County Farmers’ Market? 2 years
What do you sell (i.e. produce, meat, baked goods, honey, etc.)?
Pastured Angus Beef, Duroc Pork, Lamb
Everything is born and raised on our family farm and harvested in Indiana County.
What do you consider to be your specialty?
Bob has worked for 30 years producing high quality Angus cattle and also striving for a high quality meat product. His work has definitely paid off.
My parents and grandparents started raising Duroc pigs in the 1950’s and were known for their success in the show ring and on the farm. Our children have carried on that tradition and when we returned to the family farm in Smicksburg we felt Duroc pork would be a great compliment to the Angus beef.
Duroc pigs are considered one of the two top quality meat breeds of swine and therefore they fit perfectly with our high quality Angus beef.
Three restaurants currently carry our Duroc pork on their menus, Thee Village Eatinghouse in Smicksburg, Portia’s Bistro, and The Coventry Inn both in Indiana.
The sheep are my passion. They are a natural fit for some of the steeper pastures at Mahoning Creek Farm because their small hooves do not cause erosion as they walk over the pastures. Our focus again on producing high quality lamb and we’ve accomplished that in both our Dorset and Suffolk sheep flocks.
What is your favorite thing about farming and/or the market?
It’s in our blood, some people have a passion for farming because they are born and raised on a farm and know it’s where they are meant to be. That’s Bob and I, we always planned to be involved in agriculture and farming in one way or another.
We love the new friends we’ve made and we love educating people about agriculture, something we as farmers often take for granted because we are immersed in it day in and day out.
I am also blessed that my day job, as Executive Director of PA Farm Link, allows me to work with new/beginning and established farmers educating, consulting, etc. My favorite area of work is farm succession planning which allows me to help farm families ensure their farm moves forward to the next generation.
Do you hold any special certifications?
PQA and BQA certified.
PQA stands for Pork Quality Assurance indicating we keep up to date on all regulations and are well versed in proper management and medication practices, rules and regulations. The program helps to ensure farmers utilize best management practices in caring for their animals. Which all farmers strive to do.
BQA stands for Beef Quality Assurance and focuses on beef cattle and proper best management and medication practices, and rules and regulations. Again the focus of the program is ensuring beef cattle receive the best care possible at all times.
Both programs are common programs that livestock producers participate in because farmers in general want to provide the best care possible to their animals.
Is there anything about your philosophy or growing/producing practices that you would like people to know?
Bob’s one comment will always be “we never want them to have a bad day.” This is the reason we feed our beef cattle grains in the winter along with their hay and pasture. They require proper nutrition and feeding properly balanced feed in the winter ensures our Angus herd thrives even on the worst winter days.
During the summer the beef cattle graze and are provided hay if there are drought conditions.
We utilize probiotics in our pig feed, therefore our pig feed does not contain antibiotics.