Raising cattle for beef and breeding

Charlotte Caldwell braved a smile Monday as a brisk breeze whipped across the knoll where Mystic Hill Farms sits. It was chilly but the gathered crowd was in a festive mood.

Located off Route 229, the farm sprawls across some 600 acres with another 1,000 leased.

“It’s really beautiful here when spring finally arrives,” she laughed.

Along with her husband David, and daughter Kathy Leader, the Caldwells were honored as the 2014 Agribusiness of the Year by the Culpeper County Chamber of Commerce.

“A lot of people have come to celebrate your achievement,” said Chamber President Jim Charapich as he chatted with longtime farm manager Tommy Clark.

Clark, who grew up in Culpeper, said that a lot has changed through the years with livestock breeding as technology improves.

With an upcoming bull and female sale at the end of April, Clark said that their cattle supplies different needs.

“It depends on the market,” said Clark, “some are raised for the high quality beef and others for their seed stock.”

Home to more than 900 head of cattle, Mystic Hill Farms breeds quality registered Angus, Braunvieh and Angus x Braunvieh composite cattle that meet the needs of cattlemen in the beef industry around the nation.

From the pastures of Culpeper County, the stock from Mystic Hills serve global needs with product reaching such faraway continents as Australia.

It’s that far reaching impact partnered with innovation and creativity that garnered them the Chamber’s highest award.

One of the Chamber’s Counselors and General Manager at CFC Farm and Home Center David Durr bestowed the honors.

“Agriculture is the largest industry in Culpeper,” said Durr who presented the Caldwells with their plaque recognizing their commitment to produce superior seed stock. Durr praised the Caldwells and Tommy Clark for their innovation, creativity and reputation for high level customer service throughout the county and the nation.

“It’s a pleasure to present you with this award,” said Durr who was surrounded by local officials, members of the business community, friends and family. “There’s some ham biscuits, cookies and coffee for everyone to enjoy.”

Retired from the federal government working for the Bureau of Mines, David Caldwell and his wife Charlotte bought the farm in 1988.

“We loved it out here,” said David. “Originally there were about 40 Arabian horses here but then we decided to add Angus.”

Bringing on Clark as farm manager capped the deal for the Caldwells who couldn’t say enough about his skills and able running of the farm. “Tommy does an excellent job…he knows cattle.”

Mystic Hill 33rd Performance
Bull & Female Sale

Saturday, April 26, 2014 – 11 a.m.
Culpeper Agricultural Enterprises