Gert and Jenny de Kruif used to have a farm in Langbroek (in the Dutch Province of Utrecht) where they milked cows, kept calves and sold horse hay. They were also busy growing pumpkins and calabashes. Agricultural entrepreneurship was something that Gert (4th generation) grew up with from a very young age. In the summer of 2019, they moved together with their son Kees and his wife Dieneke to Uddel in Gelderland to take over a pre-existing Peter's Farm.
The automatic teat feeding system satisfies the calves need to suckle, especially in the beginning, and creates a sense of calm for the calves by establishing a natural ranking order. Our Peter's Farm calves walk around freely in herds and have plenty of space and distractions to keep them occupied. The sheer pleasure and delight they feel rubbing against the brushes and playing with the skippyballs is a joy to behold. Gert and Kees take care of everything to do with feeding and looking after the calves. Jenny helps with getting things started and takes care of the cleaning. Dieneke takes care of all administrative matters. In addition to all the work on the farm, Kees also works as a self-employed contractor in the service sector (e.g. paving, carpentry, etc.).
No two days are the same. Which is what makes the work so varied. Feeding calves makes us happy. It's also very satisfying to give calves that are having a bit of a hard time some extra care. Gert praises Kees' endurance. Both of them complement each other extremely well. Gert has heaps of experience, and Kees has a lot of energy. We now have solar collectors to heat the water for the milk, and aim to get solar panels too, so that we can become completely energy-neutral. This will make our farm future-proof for the next generation.
• Gert & Jenny and Kees & Dieneke De Kruif
• Based in Uddel, Gelderland
• 6 children and 4 children respectively
• A Peter's Farm since 2019
• Interesting detail: they have a partnership together and they live under one roof; the house is divided into two.
• Interesting detail: we have 2 hectares of grassland and also breed multi-coloured sheep.
• Hobbies: Gert still enjoys doing small-scale agricultural contract work. Kees sees work as his hobby and really enjoys tinkering, Dieneke has a vegetable greenhouse with the children. Jenny has a vegetable garden which she loves working in and the whole family gets to enjoy.