Posts Tagged ‘Farm’
Goats Are on Maternity Leave – Busy Having Kids!
Each year, during a brief period in the winter, we experience a shortage of milk for our yogurt, kefir and artisan cheeses. This is due to the fact that goats are seasonal in their milk production. Unlike cows that can reproduce year-round, goats have their baby “kids” only once a year during winter and early spring.
At Redwood Hill Farm and the other Certified Humane® family farms we source our milk from, we stop milking the goats during the last two months of their pregnancy. This resting or “dry period” gives the mother goat’s mammary system time to regenerate and allows her body to replenish with nutrients needed to make milk.
The timing and extent of the shortage can vary greatly each year. We do our very best to evenly allocate what we have available to our distributors. However, the amount of yogurt and kefir that reaches your store may change from week to week. Mother Nature and Mother Goat are only so predictable!
What can you do to find our goat milk yogurt and kefir during this time?
- Introduce yourself to the dairy buyer at your favorite store, and ask him/her which day of the week the order for Redwood Hill Farm goat milk products comes in. If it is possible, plan to shop on that day.
- If you are a regular customer who depends on our goat milk products each week, your dairy buyer may be willing to set aside some of the order for you.
- Check with the other natural and specialty food stores in your area to find other sources of Redwood Hill Farm goat milk products.
- Finally, please do check back with us at email@example.com as we may have updates on milk supply and fulfillment of orders.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we care for our milking does and their precious kids during this special time of the year.
Not all goat milk is the same – there are variations in volume, components, water content and butterfat depending on the time of year and on the type of goat breed. Of all breeds, Alpine and Saanen dairy goats are the top producers by volume. Milk from the Nubian dairy goat breed on the other hand, tends to be a bit higher in butterfat. To make our yogurt, kefir and cheeses consistent and delicious in flavor, we combine goat milk from Redwood Hill Farm and seven other family farms, sourcing milk from La Mancha, Nubian, Alpine, Oberhasli, and Saanen goats.
In Italy there are many festivals in November to celebrate the olive harvest, when family and friends gather to harvest the plump green and purple fruit by hand.
It was a cold but sunny morning three years ago, when we started our own family tradition: picking the fruit of our young trees by hand to make “green gold”—the buttery, peppery, and delicious olive oil.
At Redwood Hill Farm, we’ve been farming gardens and orchards just as long as dairy farming—nearly 50 years.
It is typical in Sonoma County to experience an extended dry period each summer without rainfall for many months. We are therefore accustomed to using water wisely and have implemented different water conservation systems which include composting, drip irrigation, reclaiming and reusing water, and dry farming. The severe drought conditions of the last four years have challenged us to perfect these techniques as we make the most of the water we have, now more than ever.
We are thrilled to be in Issue 3 of Conscious Company Magazine as a handful of the nations top sustainable cheese producers! Redwood Hill Farm Owner and CEO Jennifer Bice was interviewed about her woman-owned company and her 45+ year commitment to sustainability and the environment.
You can pick up a copy at Whole Foods Market, Sprouts, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, and other local retailers—you’ll be supporting sustainable businesses.
CLICK HERE to read the full article.
Part 1: Growing Our Own Drought Resilient Goat Feed – Tagasaste
Conserving precious water is on our minds as we are facing another year of severe drought in California. We’re resilient folks, and are constantly looking at ways in which we can do our part at the Farm as well as at the creamery. Redwood Hill Farm Manager Scott Bice’s most recent water-saving project on the farm is one we’re very excited about. We are now growing some of our goat’s feed, a drought-tolerant, leafy shrub called Tagasaste, right on the farm – and the goats love to eat it.
How much do you know about goat kids? At Redwood Hill Farm we’ve been raising dairy goat kids since the mid 1960’s, and over the years have learned much about these intelligent, cute and cuddly young animals. Here’s our ‘top ten’ of fun facts about goat kids.
Humans and goats have enjoyed a close relationship for thousands of years. Nicole Bice, pictured left, and her brother Colton, below, are the next generation of human kids growing up with goat kids on our Certified Humane® farm—kids playing with kids, living and learning together on the farm.
by David Bice
Redwood Hill Farm has been a family farm for over 45 years. It began in 1968 when our parents, Cynthia and Kenneth Bice (with then seven kids), moved from Los Angeles to Sonoma County and bought their very first goat named “Flopsy”. As a family and later under the leadership of oldest sister, Jennifer Bice, we have been making our cultured yogurt, kefir and artisan cheese for our goat milk loving customers since the early 1970’s. We invite you on a journey to follow our fresh goat milk as it travels from our Certified Humane® goat farm in Sebastopol, CA, to your neighborhood store.
“Goat people” love to collect all kinds of goaty items. Enjoy this collection of some of Jennifer’s favorite art pieces collected over her 45+ years of owning and loving dairy goats.
We’ve set our annual Farm Tour dates and hope to see you
Mark your calendars and please join us this year as we celebrate life on our goat farm. Our dates have been set, and we hope you will be able to join us in beautiful west Sonoma County, a truly magical place in springtime.