A True Vermont Farm
Cavendish Game Birds was started in 1988 with the goal of providing local kitchens with fresh game birds and quail eggs. The Thompson brothers have been in the food business their entire adult lives. Before farming Bill was professional chef with a degree from Johnson & Wales in Rhode Island, and Rick worked in food marketing in the foodservice industry.
In 1986, Bill sold his New Jersey restaurant to work at a Vermont inn. Fresh game birds were not available locally, so he began raising pheasants in his backyard to supply the inn’s guests.Three years later, Bill was delivering fresh pheasant and quail to many of Vermont’s finest restaurants, and Rick was selling them to his restaurant accounts in Philadelphia and Boston.
In 1991 Rick moved to Vermont and the brothers joined forces to grow the business. In 1998, they purchased a 75-acre farm in Springfield, Vermont, where they maintain their breeding stock of Coturnix quail, and operate a hatchery that fills their barns with thousands of quail each week.
In 2013 after a fire destroyed their main barn and breeding facility, the Thompsons used their down time to research and begin a pastured heritage pig program. Today their herd of 50 Berkshire and Large Black crossed sows provide the farm with hundreds of piglets.
Their pigs grow and finish on lush pasture and wooded lots that provide a peaceful and stress free life. Today their pork products are featured in many of Vermont finest restaurants and are offered to consumers who appreciate the superior flavor and health advantage of pastured raised meats. As with all of their birds, their pork program practices no antibiotic use.