by BETTER FARMING STAFF
Five Ontario dairy producers will share in $900,000 from Ontario’s Rural Economic Development Program to create and market dairy products made with milk from specific herds.
The Dairy Farmers of Ontario worked with the Ontario government to identify dairy producers and processors seeking to move into or expand processing and marketing operations. The idea was to offer locally produced product that could be drawn from specific herds and breeds to create a clear connection for the consumer.
Carol Mitchell, minister of agriculture, food and rural affairs, said in a Thursday news release that more and more people want to know where their food comes from and how it is produced. “By sourcing milk from specific herds of cattle, this innovative project will do just that,” she said.
The five producers are:
• Gunn’s Hill Artisan Cheese Co. based on a small farm in Oxford County. They will produce traditionally crafted, high quality cheeses not commonly available in Ontario using milk from the company owner’s family farm.
• Earthrise Organic Farm milks 35 Holstein and Jersey cows on its farm in Frontenac County. They plan to produce bottled organic milk from this dedicated herd, to be sold directly from the farm.
• Mountainoak Farm was established nearly 20 years ago by Adam and Hanny Van Bergeijk in New Hamburg. Its 270 milking cows will be used by the family operation to make Gouda, Edam and other Dutch artisan cheeses.
• Jalon Farms is a family farm headed by John R. B. Miller located just outside of Creemore. It has been passed down for five generations and has operated as a fluid milk producer for more than 50 years. The family milks a purebred herd of 120 Jalon Jersey cows and plans to process and sell 100 per cent of the Jersey milk they produce from their on-farm processing operation.
• Upper Canada Cheese Company is located in Jordan Station and opened in 2005. It has exclusive rights to produce two unique cheeses using the milk from Guernsey cows. The provincial funds will help the company expand its existing facility in order to meet growing demand for its popular cheese varieties. BF