Situated on the idyllic Spier estate near Stellenbosch, our farm spans 650 hectares. Most of the land is dedicated to regenerative farming: irrigated pastureland, fields for winter grazing, vineyards, vegetables, fruit and rooibos.
About 250 hectares of the farm are part of an ongoing reforestation and rewilding project to restore the indigenous fynbos vegetation. We have planted hundreds of thousands of bulbs, trees, shrubs and succulents to support and protect the smallest of the world’s six floral kingdoms, the Cape Floristic Region.
We are extremely proud of our pioneering work in the field of carbon credits. In 2014 we were one of the very first farms in the world to be paid carbon credits for increasing the carbon content of our pastures. Every three years, including in 2023, we undergo a stringent verification and auditing process to be eligible to sell these credits. The farm employees earn 50 % of the net income from these carbon sales.
Passionate, curious, gregarious and graced with the stubbornness that a farmer needs to persevere, Angus McIntosh puts the ‘Angus’ in Farmer Angus. (A team of awesome individuals comprises the ‘Farmer’.)
Angus grew up on a cattle farm in KwaZulu-Natal. Considered the least likely of his siblings to become a farmer, he studied management accounting at Stellenbosch University before going to work as a stockbroker at Goldman Sachs in London for four years. A promotion and a move to Tokyo was on the cards, but Angus and his wife decided that they wanted to give their children a more grounded life in South Africa. The architect who designed their house, Etienne Bruwer from Greenhaus Architects, helped Angus start on a path towards studying biodynamic farming. When Angus read about Joel Salatin of Polyface Farms in the United States, in Michael Pollan’s book The Omnivore’s Dilemma, he felt compelled to become a farmer. In 2008 under the mentorship of Christo Kok, Angus started farming on the Spier estate near Stellenbosch.
In 2014 Angus became one of the world’s first farmers to sell carbon credits from the soil in his pastures. Since then, he and his team have been able to achieve additional carbon sequestration and earn additional income in every three-year measuring and audit cycle. The farm employees earn 50 % of the net income from these sales. Through his company Farmer Angus Carbon, Angus now provides consulting to other farmers who want to benefit from regenerative practices.
Angus believes that people are past the point where sustainable farming methods can make enough of an impact on climate change, animal welfare, nutrient density and food availability; regeneration is required.