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Northeastern New Brunswick monastery closes 100-year-old dairy operation

Last Updated Apr 25, 2018 at 5:00 pm EDT

ROGERSVILLE, N.B. – A 100-year tradition will come to an end at a New Brunswick monastery Thursday when 80 head of cattle will be taken to neighbouring Nova Scotia for auction.

The Cistercian-Trappist Monastery in Rogersville, N.B., has decided to end its dairy operation because of financial problems.

Brother Stephan Hewitt, who has been in charge of the herd for 35 years, told Global News that “we don’t make a big profit with the dairy.”

Hewitt, who is one of eight monks remaining at the monastery, says it will continue its poultry raising operation, which he says is much more lucrative.

Six of their 14 employees will lose their jobs because of the change.

The monks plan to look at future ventures such as beer brewing or cheesemaking.

The monastery has already auctioned off 82 cattle and the remaining 80 will be sold in Truro, N.S., on Thursday.

Hewitt said he plans to accompany the cattle to the auction.

“I want to see the girls off one last time,” he said. “Give them a last hug.”

(Global News)