Like the rest of the U.S., Ohio is in the midst of a dairy crisis that shows little sign of getting better. In 1995 there were 6,800 dairies in Ohio. during recent months, the average price of milk conventional farmers receive is around thirty percent (30%) below the cost of production. Dairy cooperatives are sending suicide hotline numbers along with milk checks. Organic dairies, of which there are at least several hundred in Ohio, can’t compete with the certified organic mega-dairies in Texas and Colorado that are flooding the market with “organic” milk while violating federal regulations on the amount of time their herds should be on pasture.
Dairy families are wrestling with whether they must end the livelihood at which generations of their families have toiled. Many in the industry consider the disappearance of the family dairy farm is inevitable but that is not true. There is a way the family dairy farm can remain in business; producing and distributing raw milk for direct consumption.
Ohio raw milk consumers can help family dairies remain in business by joining a herd share program. Herdshares are private contractual arrangements in which someone purchases an ownership interest in a dairy animal (or herd of dairy animals) and pays a fee to a farmer for boarding, caring for and milking the animal(s). Herd share agreements are legal in Ohio by state policy and court decision.
Ohio is losing dairy farms nearly every day. The time to act is now.
ACTION TO TAKE
1. Get access to nature’s perfect food by joining a herd share program. You can likely find a herdshare near you by clicking on the Real Milk Finder link at www.realmilk.com; some dairies distributing raw cow milk through herdshare programs in Ohio can be found at the end of this alert. For goat milk and other farm products, check the website.
2. Post on your own social media stories on the crisis the dairy industry is going through and how distributing raw milk through a herd share program can enable some dairy farms to remain in business, especially organic dairy farms. In the near future, the Weston A. Price Foundation and its Campaign for Real Milk will be conducting a campaign to educate the public on the dairy crisis and how raw milk distribution through herd shares can save family dairy farms.
3. Speak directly with friends and neighbors about joining a herd share program. Talk with them about the nutritional benefits and great taste of raw milk; tell them about the dairy crisis and how joining a herd share program can help save family dairy farms and keep an important part of the community intact.
The goal is to create enough demand for raw milk where it will be easier to convince family dairies producing raw milk for pasteurization to transition at least part of their business towards producing raw milk for human consumption.
Please follow WAPF’s facebook page for more developments on the Campaign For Real Milk in Ohio.
OHIO BOVINE HERDSHARE DAIRIES
Aunt Ellen’s Farm, 3644 St Rte. 668 S, Junction City, OH 43748, phone: 740-343-3255, email: AuntEllenS@aol.com. Raw milk herdshares from 100 percent grassfed cows. Mobile milker milks the cows right in the field. No chemicals, wormers, or hormones are used. Goatshares are available from 100 percent pastured animals. The farm also offers 100 percent grassfed Angus beef, and 100 percent grassfed lamb. Pork and eggs planned.
BlueLoon Farm, Courtland & Jenny Rocco, 13085 N. Elyria Rd. West Salem, OH 44287, phone: 330-235-3953, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, web: www.blueloonfarm.com. BlueLoon Farm is a 46-acre, USDA-certified organic farm certified by Midwest Organic Services Association (MOSA). They currently milk a small herd (seven milking) of registered Jersey cows. Single and family shares available, please contact via email or phone for further details.
de Good Life Farm (Marysville), Jeff and Diane, email: email@example.com They are a small farm with two Jersey cows for milk and occasionally they have grassfed beef and pastured meat chickens for sale. The cows are in the pasture during the growing months and fed hay during the winter, with minimal non-GMO feed supplementation at milking time. Limited herdshares available from time to time. Waiting list available.
Double J Farm, Joe and Janet Streit, 3070 Wehr Rd. Hamilton, OH 45011 (~3 mi west of Trenton off State Route 73), serving and delivering to: Cincinnati, Anderson Township, Harrison, Franklin, Loveland, Dayton, Yellow Springs, and more, phone: 513-284-7330, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, web: www.doublejfarmohio.com. Grassfed, soy-free, non-GMO raw milk herdshares and raw milk dairy items including butter, cream, yogurt, sour cream, and cultured buttermilk. Grassfed beef and pastured pork, as well as pastured eggs, chickens, and turkeys. All animals are fed soy-free, non-GMO food with access to pasture year-round.
Dues Jersey Farm, Ben Dues (herd manager) and Tim Hill (distribution manager), 4162 Philothea Rd. Coldwater, OH 45828, phone: 317-753-4016, email: email@example.com. Family owned for over a century, Raw Jersey cow milk, cream, butter and grassfed beef available. 100 percent grass and forage fed from OEFFA Certified Organic fields. Pasture-grazed, and chemical free. Herdshares available. Anna Belle’s Pet Milk, Pet Cream and Pet Butter and 100 percent grassfed beef (Indiana and Ohio). Farm pickup available. Looking for delivery locations in Columbus and Cincinnati on Wednesday mornings. See map of current locations here.
Earth Song Farm, Steve Andrews and Cindy Farmer, 7634 Lafayette Rd. (Rt. 42), Lodi, OH 44254, phone: 330-948-2672, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, web: earthsongfarm.com. Organic and biodynamic farm raising Nubian and Alpine goats, cows, free-range chickens, and rabbits. Holistic health care management is used, including an herbal parasite prevention program. No hormones, antibiotics or chemical wormers. The animals are fed organic hay, free-range browse, a small amount of organic non-GMO/non-soy feed while on the milking stand, and occasional fruits and vegetables from the farm. A herdshare program is available for raw goat milk, and raw cow milk. Other products available from the farm include free-range chicken, rabbit meat, eggs, honey, maple syrup, seasonal organic fruits and vegetables, jams, goat milk soap and medicinal herbal products. Farm tours are welcome. They participate in farmers markets at Medina, Copley and Wadsworth.
Franklin Furnace: 5T Farm, Dwight Otworth, 1073 Oakes Rd, phone: 740-574-2938, email: Andercraft@aol.com. Beginning a herdshare program. Building a market for eggs, pork, and beef. Farm and cattle are Certified Organic.Heritage Breed Farms, Brent and Beth Schulze, 11591 Versailles Rd., Covington, OH 45318, phone: 937-726-3501. Grass fed Organic Guernsey cows. Golden Guernsey raw milk herdshares available, grass-fed only, no grain. A2/A2 milk. They also have grassfed beef, pork, lamb, chicken, turkey, eggs, and more.
Highland Haven Farm, Morgan and Diane Phelps, 12221 Turley Ln. Hillsboro, OH 45133, phone: 937-901-7992, email: email@example.com, web: www.farmmatch.com/
Homestead Farm, John and Cathy Baumgardner (owners), 10474 New Carlisle Pike, New Carlisle, OH 45344, phone: 937-845-9394, email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Currently selling herdshares from their pasture-fed Jersey herd to Ohio residents. They also sell USDA-inspected grassfed, pastured beef.
Payne Family Farm, Utica OH 43080, phone: 740-507-3165, email: email@example.com. Delivering to Westerville, New Albany, Pataskala, and Mt. Vernon. Private herdshares for raw goat milk or for raw cow milk (along with butter and cream, soon to add provolone and mozzarella cheese). Classes in making ice cream, kefir, and goat cheese. Pastured poultry custom butchered to your specifications, free-range turkey for Thanksgiving, and free-range brown eggs. They use stainless steel milking machines and a cooling system to ensure clean milk; quality control programs in place. Fields are organically re-mineralized every year and water supply is filtered. All farm products are scheduled for pick up through the office. Scarlett Payne is a Certified Natural Health Practitioner who sees over 250 regular clients for a variety of health issues. Now accepting new clients. Contact them for order forms, herdshare fees, and/or office visits.
Simon Certified Organic Family Farm, 1044 Battlesburg St. SW East Sparta, OH 44626, phone: 330-704-2895, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, web: simonorganics.com. Everything on the farm is Certified Organic through OEFFA and biodynamic. Brown Swiss and Jersey cow grazing spring, summer, and fall, eating annuals in season and pasture with access to perennials. In the late fall and winter they eat alfalfa with soft bladed fescues and bailage (fermented alfalfa and grass) with access to perennials. Herdshares are available. Also offering 100 percent grassfed Black Angus beef, pastured turkeys, broiler chickens, and egg layers, annual plant sales in May, a CSA with over 136 heirloom fruits and vegetables, heritage breed Glouchestershire Pork, Meadow Veal. They participate in Countryside Conservancy Farmers Market at Old Trial School, Highland Square in Akron and Howe Meadow.
Stone Garden Farm, Laura & Jim Fry, 2891 Southern Rd. Richfield, OH 44286, phone: 843-469-4060, email: StoneGardenFamily@yahoo.com, web: www.StoneGardenFarm.com, Facebook.com: stonegardenfarm. Cow share, registered grassfed Jersey milk cow, monthly shares are $30, other farm products available, meats, produce, etc., homesteading classes, homeschool meetups, 19th century village tours and more.
Sweet Grass Dairy, Jacob Coleman, Fredericktown, OH, phone: 317-258-3864, Facebook: sweetgrassssdairy. They milk crossbred dual-purpose cows and have been breeding for an A2/A2 herd. They are a grass-based dairy with about 97 percent of the ration coming from the pastures. A small amount of grain and molasses is fed to help balance the cows’ energy when the grass is short on energy (No soy is fed). They are 40 miles north of Columbus, OH, just five minutes off of Interstate 71. Herdshares are available after a farm tour and interview. Please call anytime to set up a time to visit the farm.
TS Farms, Tim & Tiffany Shinkle, 11061 Careytown Rd. New Vienna, OH 45159 (90 minutes from Columbus, Dayton and Cincinnati), phone: 937-763-1167, email: email@example.com. Cow and goat herdshares. Free-range, farm-raised meats, lamb, chicken, beef, and pork. Brown eggs, jams, jellies, and honey. Call or email for availability.
Two Sisters Creamery, Shawn and Beth Dougherty, herd managers, 210 Burge Rd. Toronto, OH 43964, phone: 740-537-5178, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, web: onecowrevolution.wordpress.com
How can one help if they don’t live in that state?