Tim and Sarah Jane Dixon, of Worth-a-Bit Angus, are beef producers from North Tryon, PEI. Tim co-owns their 4th generation family beef farm with his father Eric. Sarah Jane is a High School English teacher and grew up on a 4th generation dairy and beef farm in Lot 16. Their farm includes a 60 head cow-calf operation , as well as their feedlot, where about 100 cattle are finished yearly and marketed to a producer-owned plant, Atlantic Beef Products Inc. in Borden-Carleton, PEI. They farm 400 acres in total growing barley, oats and forages for their cowherd as well as their feedlot. Tim and Sarah met through their connection to cattle, and have recently welcomed their first child, Ella.
Name: Tim and Sarah Jane Dixon
Occupation: Tim is a Beef Farmer, and Sarah Jane is a High School English Teacher.
What does your job entail?
Tim: First thing I do each day is the chores, which involves feeding the cattle, bedding up the cattle, and checking the pastures in the summer, and then check for calves in the winter time. Then we have lots of crops to do throughout the summer.
Sarah: I teach at Three Oaks, but help Tim with cattle handling when he needs an extra pair of hands.
How long have you been involved in the Agriculture/ Food industry on PEI?
Tim: All of my life. I grew up on this farm, my family has been farming here since 1916.
Sarah Jane: I grew up on a dairy farm in Lot 16, PEI; well it was dairy, beef, and potatoes. We had Milking Shorthorn dairy cattle and Simmental beef cattle. That’s how Tim and I knew each other; it was through cattle shown at the local exhibitions.
What is your education/ experience prior to entering your current job?
Tim: I grew up on the family farm then I got my Animal Science Diploma and Agriculture Technology Diploma at the Nova Scotia Agriculture College in Truro (currently Dalhousie Agricultural Campus)
Sarah Jane: Mine is not agriculture related, but I completed my undergrad at St. Thomas University, and then my Bachelor of Education and Master of Education from the University of Prince Edward Island. My agriculture experience is growing up on my family’s farm.
Are you involved in any extracurriculars/ community activities?
Tim: I am a Director of PEI Cattle Producers and Vice president of the Maritime Angus Association.
Sarah Jane: We are 4H Beef Leaders for the Freetown-Harmony 4H Club. In 2019, we had 5 new members and we took them to their first Achievement Day at the Crapaud Agriplex.
What is your favourite way to eat Island Beef?
Tim: For me, you can’t bet a good roast beef dinner.
Sarah Jane: BBQ steak.
When you were a kid, what did you want to do when you grew up?
Tim: Well I originally wanted to be a vet, then I decided that I wanted to farm.
Sarah Jane: I always wanted to be a teacher.
What would you want consumers to know about your business or the agriculture/ food
Tim: I would say to a consumer to remember that farmers are a member of the population just like anyone else. We have our own families that we need to provide for, and grow healthy and safe food not only for everyone else, but for our own families. Don’t be afraid to ask your local farmers questions if you have any concerns about the food you’re getting.
Sarah Jane: Farmers are very hard working and they care about their animals and their land.
Why do you do what you do?
Tim: Well I think like most farmers; it’s in their blood, we enjoy what we’re doing and we can’t imagine doing anything else. We really enjoy working with the animals and watching them grow and develop; plus watching the crops grow and then harvested.
Sarah Jane: It’s a way of life, not just a career or job. It’s a lifestyle.