Wilkshire has been in the Wilkins family for five generations and is now run jointly by Jeff and his father (also named Jeff). Jeff is an architect in Burlington and his father is a veterinarian in Elon.
Wilkshire began in 1907 as a dairy and crop operation, transitioning to a Grade A dairy farm in 1950 featuring Ayeshire cows, whose milk is high in butter fat and ideal for making icecream. In 1983, the year Jeff was born, his grandfather retired from the dairy business. With some of the proceeds, he invested in a few red poll beef cows. The family fell in love with the breed for its moderate frame, calving ease, docile nature and the fact that it gains easily on a diet of grass and forages.
Jeff and his father have grown the herd to over 75 brood cows and have been selling breeding stock across the United States and beyond, with multiple customers in Canada in the last year. They are both committed to preserving and increasing awareness of this special breed and Jeff’s father is an active board member of the regional and national red poll associations.