Bosrten cattle and pork fat
Whoever leaves their farm is doubly well-stocked - with heartfelt goodness
and good knowledge. OUT OF THE WAY AND STILL IN SHALLOWS HE STANDS, THE KOHLERHOF,
WHERE THE DANZL FAMILY LIVES, WORKS AND HAS BEEN SHOWING FOR MANY YEARS THAT SPECK IS NOT
SAME AS SPECK. REALLY NOT.
They are not morning people. "None of us are," confesses Kathi Danzl. She is the "old farmer's wife" on the farm. The designation quickly conjures up in the mind's eye the image of a hunched, wrinkled woman with a headscarf. Kathi Danzl is the opposite of that. The smooth opposite, to be exact. Much is different here at the Kohlerhof in Ried 29 than the snappy image of a farm still wants to suggest. The spacious kitchen of the "young farmers" is bright, modern and yet homely and entered through three doors - triple inviting, so to speak. From here, life on the farm can be excellently overlooked. The running ducks, the herb garden, the entrance to the stable or the way to the house and the farm store.
When the old barn was converted into a residential building, care was taken to ensure that both apartments have their own entrance. In farms it is actually common practice that all generations go through one front door. And the fact that the family does not get out of bed and into the barn at the crack of dawn is also rather unusual. "We start at six, half past six. That's usually already too late," says Kathi, and daughter-in-law Gertraud Danzl adds with the same humor: "The animals inevitably have the same rhythm." Yes, it's as simple as that.
Three years ago, Gertraud and Hannes Danzl took over the farm from Hannes' parents, with whose help they continue to live what has now become a rarity in the agricultural world. "We are full-time farmers," says Hannes Danzl. "Dad was already a full-time farmer, and because our farm is relatively small, we had to figure out early on how to get additional income."
As far as the location and especially the view are concerned, the Platzl here - on the slope in Ried - is favorable, if not magnificent. Those who are not so blessed with cultivable hectares, however, have to come up with something. Quality instead of quantity, exceptional instead of conventional, special instead of uniform. The direction in which the family began to move almost three decades ago inspires many comparisons. From the desire not to become a sideline farmer, in any case, the foundation was laid for a broad base on which now
also the next, the fourth Danzl generation at the farm builds its future. "We started making bacon 30 years ago," recalls Hans Danzl, the "old farmer" who, like his wife, does not conform to the image that goes with it. "Old sows" became "mast sows", the
bacon was soon joined by sausages and opportunities also grew with raspberries. "We had the perennials in front of the farm in the field. But then that became much too labor-intensive," Hannes recounts. When the perennials were removed, the actual work center grunted anyway long ago in the barn.
"My ideal purpose in life is bristling cattle and pig fat," sings the rich pig farmer in Johann Strauss' operetta "The Gypsy Baron." At Kohlerhof, too, many things revolve around bristling cattle and pork fat, even if the wealth there is to be found less in the rich purse than in the beautiful certainty of being able to provide a good and beautiful life for the whole family from one's own work. The primal charm of this idea is as old as mankind itself, but - we already mentioned it - today only a few smaller farmers have the opportunity to implement it in the world that has become much larger on the one hand, and much more narrow and strict on the other. "The numerous requirements, rules and regulations certainly prevent many small ones from starting something like this," Gertraud is convinced, and father-in-law Hans explains why the regulations, which are quite capable of nipping initiatives and commitment in the bud, cannot bring the Kohlerhof to its knees: "We have grown with the requirements. We have retrofitted and retrofitted and retrofitted.
To meet all that at once would mean extremely high investments." Against that backdrop, too, the decision made back then has proven to be spot on. No less right was also the career choice of the son. He learned to be a butcher, and his skills mean not only craftsmanship but also taste. Butchering takes place every three weeks. "This is the rhythm we follow through. If we were to shorten the rhythm, we wouldn't be able to do it work-wise," he says. He uses two weeks for work in the barn, with the cattle and in the field. The Danzls farm a total of twelve hectares, eight of which alone are used to grow grain for the pigs.
With homegrown barley, wheat and triticale, a cross between wheat and rye, the lucky charms are grown. Corn has not been on the feed plan for a long time.
In the slaughter week, it is then literally about the sausage. If it is not about the bacon, which is available at Kohlerhof in "four types": Ham, Karree, belly and usually also Schopfspeck. "There are still three different hams, boiled ham, Frankfurter, white sausage, in winter blood sausage, Lyoner, extra, paprika and a
streichwurst. Then another hard sausage, two different Sulz'n, three different Kaminwurz'n and in the summer we will perhaps start with Bratwürstl'n," Gertraud lists the range as if shot from a pistol and just as quickly it is clear why Hannes must reserve a working week for the transformation of the meat into all the delicacies.
On average, between 180 and 200 pigs live on the farm. From very small to very large. "We have them from birth
up and do not buy pigs too," explains Hans. "From the cradle to the grave," adds Gertraud with the saying of
direct marketers. The fact that at Kohlerhof anyone can look into the barn at any time and see for themselves the welfare of the animals,
has always been the case. When the barn was rebuilt, this philosophy was an important point for the plan. "I have
nothing of it if I build it so that I have as little effort as possible, and the customers may think that our-
re philosophy limp," Hannes explains. "I make my living from sales."
Speaking of sales. That's what allows the Danzls to be full-time farmers. And the fact that they have
been able to do that for so long speaks volumes - for the bacon, for the sausages and their quality. The palate of the customers is like a
road sign that constantly points to the Kohlerhof. That not all bacon is the same, not only the regular "how-
derkehrer" know. Their obviously excellent taste is confirmed by the numerous awards that ennoble the farm
as it were. In the truest sense of the word, the Danzls became nevertheless alone in the year 2014 threefold Landessieger - for
the Karree, the ham and the belly bacon -, which entitles them to carry the desired GenussKrone, the very highest
award for regional specialities in Austria. In the past, ex-farm sales ran through the "Kuchltür". Sounds nice enough, but at some point it became too much. It is still the case that customers who became friends,
or friends who are also customers, are quickly invited for a coffee, during the reconstruction, not a few also hoped for a "Hofcafé". "That would then be too much work. Although, irendwie we are a small," smiles Gertraud.
To "lead" the growing clientele and offer them a broader range in addition to the in-house products, which include fresh meat in the Schlachtwo-
che and potatoes throughout the year, was opened soon ten years ago
the farm store. Again, it was a right decision at the right time. For about ten years, the awareness of consumers has been increasing. They want to know where their food comes from. They want an all-
round honest story. And they get that here. "You need a certain assortment, a small variety of products," Hannes says.
Because direct marketers know each other, it wasn't hard to get the variety going. "We have herbs, fruit,
jams, honey, juice and handmade pasta," lets Gertraud look at the shelves. A g'schmackiger look is
that. One that entices. And tempts. It is possible from Tuesday to Friday, from 8.30 to 11 a.m. and from 3 to 6 p.m., on
Saturday the delicacies are sold from 8.30 to 11 a.m. at the farmers' market on Pfundplatz in Schwaz.
The fruit press of the Schwaz Fruit and Horticulture Association extracts up to 70,000 lit…