Dakaroh farm was named for Daniel and Katherine Rohrer, who moved to the Boonsboro farm when they married in 1941. They ran a dairy farm, breeding purebred Holstein cattle while raising their four children. After graduating from the University of Maryland, son Danny returned to the farm. Danny continued the dairy and expanded into selling meats at farm markets in 1998, which was the beginning of Danny Rohrer's Meats. Health problems that required surgery in 2002 brought an end to the twice a day milking. The Holsteins were replace with Angus beef cows. The farm had always raised a few pigs and this operation was expanded. Katherine always kept a flock of laying hens and raised and processed broiler chickens to feed her family. Today the farm is home to 300 layers that freely roam the farm. Several hundred meat chickens get to grow up on the farm each year. When market customers started asking for lamb cuts, these wooly critters were added to the farm. Meat goats were the most recent addition to the herd.
All animals are pasture raised and grain finished. Antibiotics and hormones are not used on a routine basis. Danny's animals are his children, and should any become sick, they will receive medical attention the same as your children do.
The farm has 45 acres of permanent pasture. More than half of the farm's crop land is used to grow hay for the animals. Corn and soy beans are grown and used as feed for the animals. Occasionally a few acres are planted to wheat or barley and this is also used in the feed mix. After harvesting the corn and soybeans, the fields are planted with cover crops. This protects the fields from erosion and also recycles any crop nutrients remaining in the soil. Some of the cover crops are harvested the next spring to provide addition feed for the animals.
Maryland recently started a poultry and rabbit processing program. Participants are trained in the proper and safe processing of these animals and then can be licensed to sell them at farm markets. Danny was a member of Maryland's first training class and was one of the first home processors licensed by the state. The four legged animals are all processed under USDA inspection and the meat returns to the farm packaged, ready for sale. The beef is dry aged for at least three weeks to enhance tenderness and flavor.
The butcher also does some extra processing. Nine flavors of pork sausage, lamb sausage, and goat sausage are made. Danny also has several varieties of hot dogs, summer sausage, beef sticks, and bologna. Most meat cuts are available weekly. If you want a special cut, it can usually be provided with advance notice.
Dakarohfarm is the only place Danny has lived. In fact, he and his sisters were born in the 1881 farm house. Because of Danny's love for his farm, it has been preserved as farmland forever. After all, he doesn't really own the farm, he is just the current care taker.