As a biodynamic farm, we look at the relationship of the soil, plants, and our animals as an interconnected one. A quality final product begins with a well-balanced farm. By maintaining healthy and nutrient-rich soil that in turn provides the lush grasses that our cows rely on to produce their protein-rich milk, we can continue to make organic yogurt that makes our customers happy.
This cycle begins with the treatment of our land. With 420 acres, we are considered a small farm compared to most, but we continue to replenish the soil’s nutrients through crop rotation, crop diversification, and composted manure. Our cows graze whenever it is seasonally available, so we dedicate half our acreage to pasture. The rest of our farmland is used to cultivate haylege, small grains, and hay to be used as feed in the winter. We are proud that all the food our cows consume is produced right here on the farm! We raise all our cows from birth, while normally purchasing our breeding bulls from other farms. After living and feeding from their mothers, our calves are fed 6 pints of whole milk twice a day for the next three-and-a-half months.
At 15 months of age, our heifers are ready to be bred. It takes nine months of pregnancy before the cow gives birth to her first calf or “freshens.” The 2-year-old cow then joins the rest of the herd for a milking career that for some cows can last well into their teens.
From April to November, our cows derive the majority of their diet directly from pasture. Our philosophy in raising our cows has always been “natural is better.” Instead of using antibiotics and growth hormones, we maintain a healthy herd by using homeopathic remedies and herbal tinctures. We also don’t de-horn or dock our cows’ tails. The result is a hard-working, healthy, and good-natured group of cows.