Mary and Brian Heffernan always dreamed of moving to the country to ranch and raise “free-range kids” in the dirt and sunshine. They both have deep agriculture roots and a passion for small town, small business and family-centered food. So when the opportunity to purchase the historic Sharps Gulch Ranch came along in 2013, Mary and Brian knew they'd found their land. With eyes on a new adventure and California soil in their souls, they took their four spunky girls to Siskiyou county.
We are Five Marys Farms - after Mary and our four daughters all named Mary after grandmothers and aunts on both sides of the family. MaryFrances or "Francie" is 12, MaryMarjorie or "Maisie" is 11, MaryJane or "JJ" is 9 and MaryTeresa or "Tessa" is 7.
Those are the FIVE MARYS proud to be working the ranch everyday keeping up with the leader of our pack, Heff.
Before we moved to the ranch we had small businesses and restaurants and we spent a lot of our time sourcing really good quality ingredients for our menu.
In the quest for super high quality meats, raised ethically but with great flavor, we did a ton of research with our chefs to know exactly what we wanted for our customers.
+ We wanted superior quality beef with a great story behind it.
+ We wanted a grass-fed lifestyle with a barley finish and an extended dry-age.
+ We wanted to know the animals were raised right and harvested humanely.
We searched high and low in small farms and couldn’t find anyone who could do this on a large enough scale to supply what we needed.
So we decided to do it ourselves.
We originally thought we'd just go up on the weekends and hire a ranch manager commuting back to our businesses in the city during the week, but we quickly realized we couldn't do both of these things well.
It didn't take us long do decide to totally change paths and jump into ranching full time. This meant selling our businesses and leaving our beautiful home we’d worked so hard for, Brian leaving his busy law practice and moving away from a land of opportunity and the only livelihood we knew.
We knew we had to find a new model and create a business from scratch to sustain our livelihood, so we started from square one.
When we started selling the meat we'd worked hard to raise, we would personally deliver to customers and then we started “farm stands” (our own version of farmers markets). They were a great way to kick start our sales and grow our business early, but we knew that wasn’t sustainable for us because we wanted to be on the ranch, not traveling all of the time to sell our meat.
The answer seemed to lie in shipping our meats directly to customers - and finding customers who appreciate high-quality, well-raised meats.
Shipping meat is no easy task, it took well over a year to navigate - but with lots of trial and error and learning from many mistakes - we have a tried-and-true system to sell, pack and ship meat directly to customers all over the US.
We use social media to share our story and sell our product and in four years we've grown to reach over 8,000 customers all over the country and we ship over 10,000 pounds of meat every month right from our ranch in rural California.
Using Social Media to Grow Our Brand...
Thanks to sharing our story on social media, we have received national attention over the past few years - with features in Oprah Magazine, Parents Magazine, Enjoy, Eating Well, Flea Market Style, GEV magazine and Real Simple.
We were also named "Best Farm" in America by Paleo Magazine in 2018!
All of this is because social media allows us to share our day-to-day life. To share our story and help tell the story of agriculture in today's world.
Follow along with us on Instagram as we share our day-to-day lives on the ranch!
Mary and Brian believe that good things take time, from restoring old ranch homes to raising cattle.
There simply are no short cuts.
We commit to consistently provide the finest quality meats only from animals we raise as a family on our ranch directly and hassle-free to your family's doorstep anywhere in the US.
After years in the restaurant business we had a lot of trials cooking with different meats from small farms to bigger names. We appreciate that consistency matters and that extra effort, like well packaged products and a 21 to 28-day dry aging and old world butchery practices (one animal at a time), is required for the most amazing flavor and tenderness. Above all, constant and unwavering care is required every single day of an animal's life to achieve a premium cut of meat. We go that extra mile.
Order our beef, lamb or pork by the individual cut, try one of our sampler assortments or get a customized box regularly with our Farm Club membership. Our ordering process is easy and your product will ship and arrive quickly and without hassle. No minimums or subscriptions are required and we ship anywhere in the country.
We are now the primary meat source for hundreds of families throughout the country and they will tell you our products are consistently fantastic and delivery is quick, easy and predictable.
We hope you will taste and appreciate the difference as well - you won't be disappointed!
Oh, and to answer your first question about us - yes, there really are five Marys. Five Marys Farms is named for the five girls in our family, all named Mary! Our four girls (ages 6-11) are all named after grandmothers and aunts on both sides carrying on a long standing family tradition of strong women named Mary.
We hope you’ll SHOP Five Marys meats or join us for a Five Marys experience!
Our livestock spend their days on our Siskiyou county ranch, roaming freely and munching wild, Californian grasses. The ranching methods and beliefs we use, from grazing rotations to slaughter, preserve and protect the land we live on and respect the animals we raise from birth until their "one bad day" sacrificing for the food on our plates.
As far as certifications go, we believe in actions, not labels. Our products reflect our beliefs in respecting our animals, raising them with the utmost care and comfort and in feeding our customers only what we feed our family - the highest quality meats raised as naturally and humanely as possible.
We are raising Black Angus cattle, Navajo-Churro sheep, Berkshire hogs and a wide variety of laying hens.
Everyday is an adventure here on the ranch!
WHY FIVE MARYS?
We believe in selling only the finest meat and the finest meat comes from animals and land that are well cared for.
There are no shortcuts.
We are a small family ranch and together as a family we vigilantly care for each of our animals.
Our Black Angus cattle, Navajo Churro lambs and Berkshire heritage pigs spend their lives on our green pastures and hills rich in minerals and with plenty of sunshine and fresh Northern California mountain air.
You can experience the difference in the taste of our beef, lamb and pork.
Our meat is never treated with antibiotics or hormones.
We are organically minded and GMO free.
Our beef is finished on pasture grass and steam-flaked GMO-free barley.
Our animals are processed at a first class USDA process, cut and wrap facility and each cut has complete traceability to our animals.
Our ground beef and steaks are all dry aged for 14-28 days for tenderness and flavor you won't find many places other than the premier steakhouses.
We strive to bring the finest meat to your table, as well as the real story behind it, so you know just where your food comes from.
We are the Heffernan Family and are proud to be stewards of the land at Sharps Gulch Ranch. With farming in our blood from generations past, we are raising livestock and our children as natural as we can in the California sunshine.
We like doing things the hard way.
We believe in muddy boots, calloused hands and nurturing our land and livestock through dedication and hard work.
We believe that healthy animals live in big spaces with lots of sunshine, and don’t need extra hormones, chemicals or antibiotics.