Dairy Goddesses 1st Cheese Festival

I can not believe it has been a whole week since the California Artisan Cheese Festival in Petaluma, California. This was the first time we had attended the festival and what a great event it was. It was very well organized with lots of participation from the very best in Cheese Makers, Cheesemonger’s and Chefs and of course Wineries. I have to admit I was a bit nervous going and being around such accomplished and experienced cheese makers. I still feel like such a baby cheese maker but everyone was very nice and welcoming.

On Friday we had some time to explore the beautiful area of Petaluma. Rolling hills and green pastures with beautiful cows all over the place.

Larry Peter's Owner of Petaluma Creamery and Spring Hill Jersey Cheese

Larry Peters- Owner of Petaluma Creamery and Spring Hill Jersey Cheese

We made a stop at the Petaluma Creamery Cheese Shop. I recommend if you are in the area to stop by. Good food and great cheese and ice cream. We were lucky enough to meet the owner Larry Peters. He is very nice and made sure we had a tour of his big beautiful plant.

On Friday night was the beginning of the festival festivities. “Cheesemongers’ Duel- The Best Bite”. This was the first year and it was very well received and a lot of fun! They had about 25 Cheesemongers’ competing for the title.

Cheesemonger's Duel The Best Bite

Cheesemongers’  Duel
The Best Bite

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Cheesemonger Line Up

 

Well I was certainly blessed to get Phyllis Heagney of Oliver’s Market of Cotati. Not only is she so very nice and fun but she is a gifted cheesemonger and baker. She was paired with my Naked Fromage Blanc. She baked the most delicious cracker topped with my cheese and then topped it with a candied orange (Yeah…she candied the orange herself) All I can say is AMAZING. Everyone must have thought so too because it voted the “Best Bite” of the night. That was so very exciting. A great way to start off my first festival.

Best Bite 2015

Best Bite 2015

Queen Cheesemonger  Phyllis Heagney

Queen Cheesemonger
Phyllis Heagney

And the winner is....

And the winner is….

On Saturday we started off our day exploring the beautiful hills with our good friend Tim Pedroza and his daughter Laura from Pedroza Dairy and Cheese

Bodega, CA They filmed the movie the Bird's here.

Bodega, CA
They filmed the movie the Bird’s here.

Then we were off to Valley Ford where we got to visit our good friends Karen Bianchi – Moreda of Valley Ford Cheese Company along with her wonderful family. We had a great tour of their dairy and cheese plant.

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We all then headed back for Saturday nights festivities. This was the Chef’s Best Bite Competition. The best Chef’s gathered and came up with some awesome bites. I was lucky to get with Chef Garrett Adair from Bistro 100 . He created a lovely French Toast bite with my Naked Fromage Blanc .

Chef Adair of Bistro 100

Chef Adair of Bistro 100

After all the great food and wine we had to check out the local watering hole Volpi’s ! What a fun night hanging out with our new friends and listening to the owner, John Volpi, play the accordion.

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We had a late night but we were ready for the last day of the festival,  The Market Place, where we got to set up to sample and sell our cheese, Cheese lovers from all over came to sip wine and sample the best of California cheeses.

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A very successful day… Our whole weekend was amazing. Got to see some old friends and meet many new ones.

Here are some of the other wonderful cheese makers that we got to see!

Brian Fiscalini

Brian Fiscalini

Fiscalini Cheese Company

Donna Pacheco

Donna Pacheco

Achadinha Cheese Company

Mary Matos

Mary Matos

Joe Matos Cheese Factory

All I can say is we can’t wait until next year!

 

Happy Ag Day 2015–so God made a Farmer

It has been an extremely busy day on the farm and at the plant but I didn’t want #AgDay2015 to pass without a mention from me. (It’s 11 06 pm so I am cutting it close).

In this terrible California drought and in a day and age that consumers are so very removed from the farm and knowing where their food comes from. I think that there is no better reminder than the words of Paul Harvey. It is my greatest hope that when people go to the grocery store they realize that it all begins with water, seeds, dirt and yep…a farmer. Happy Ag Day 2015

Paul Harvey ‘So God Made a Farmer Speech’ to the FFA delivered November 1978, Kansas City, MO   (Click here for audio of the original speech)

And on the 8th day, God looked down on his planned paradise and said, “I need a caretaker”

–so God made a Farmer

God said, “I need somebody willing to get up before dawn, milk cows, work all day in the fields, milk cows again, eat supper, then go to town and stay past midnight at a meeting of the school board”

— so God made a Farmer.

“I need somebody with arms strong enough to rustle a calf and yet gentle enough to deliver his own grandchild; somebody to call hogs, tame cantankerous machinery, come home hungry, have to wait lunch until his wife’s done feeding visiting ladies, then tell the ladies to be sure and come back real soon — and mean it”

— so God made a Farmer.

God said, “I need somebody willing to sit up all night with a newborn colt, and watch it die, then dry his eyes and say, ‘Maybe next year.’ I need somebody who can shape an ax handle from a persimmon sprout, shoe a horse with a hunk of car tire, who can make harness out of haywire, feed sacks and shoe scraps; who, planting time and harvest season, will finish his forty-hour week by Tuesday noon, and then pain’n from tractor back,’ put in another seventy-two hours”

— so God made a Farmer.

God had to have somebody willing to ride the ruts at double speed to get the hay in ahead of the rain clouds, and yet stop in mid-field and race to help when he sees the first smoke from a neighbor’s place.

— so God made a Farmer.

God said, “I need somebody strong enough to clear trees and heave bails, yet gentle enough to tame lambs and wean pigs and tend the pink-combed pullets, who will stop his mower for an hour to splint the broken leg of a meadow lark.”

It had to be somebody who’d plow deep and straight and not cut corners; somebody to seed, weed, feed, breed and rake and disc and plow and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk and replenish the self-feeder and finish a hard week’s work with a five-mile drive to church; somebody who would bale a family together with the soft strong bonds of sharing, who would laugh, and then sigh, and then reply, with smiling eyes, when his son says that he wants to spend his life “doing what dad does”

— so God made a Farmer.

Cows and Valentine’s Day…Everyday!

Growing up on a dairy farm, holidays were very much the same. My mom always made a fuss over holidays but there was not any time off. Cows don’t celebrate holidays, so as in everyday, they must be milked, fed and cared for.

My dad was a very quiet man who loved his farm, animals and of course his family. My mother was his polar opposite. She of course loved the farm, animals and our family but she was very social. She loved to sing and embraced life. She loved people and I know that was exactly what my father loved about her.

True and real love was what they had and it didn’t need to be spoken and shown, you just felt it.

I would be in the barn with my dad, or in the kitchen as we prepared his thermos of coffee to take to the barn. I would mention that is was going to be Valentine’s Day (or whatever holiday coming up)  and he would say “Every day is Valentine’s Day” (the same for every holiday) !

It didn’t mean much to me when I was young. I just thought it was his way of getting out of going to the store in town. As I got older I thought about him saying that and realizing how very true that statement is.

I mean everyone loves a gift, a special treat or evening out but isn’t it really about how you live your life with that special someone that really matters. Having a true partnership and working together towards something bigger and better than both of you. Creating something beyond just yourself. After so many Valentines Days together (37 for Tony and I) the real gift is looking back and seeing what has been created together between the both of you, a business, our home, our children and their success. Seeing our Granddaughter Delilah…now that is the best gift ever.  None of those things would have been if it wasn’t for that “Everyday Valentine”.

Well, that what Valentine’s Day is for me.

Manuel & Linda Borges

Manuel & Linda Borges

Delilah's 1st Valentine's Day- 4 months old

Delilah’s 1st Valentine’s Day- 4 months old

Delilah Valentines 3 Delilah Valentines 1

 

 

 

“Happy Valentine’s Day…..EVERYDAY”

Dairy Goddess Is “Culture-al”- Try This Eastern European Cheese Spread.

One thing I truly love about my business is all of the wonderful people that we get to meet and all of the things that we learn. In our Templeton, CA Farmers Market (on Saturdays 9-1pm). A very nice lady shared with my “Little Goddesses” a wonderful Eastern European dish called “Paskha”  a Cheese Spread that she now makes with Dairy Goddess Fromage Blanc “Naked”. Being of Portuguese decent we have many traditional recipes but I am so happy to share this one that our sweet customer shared with us.

She so kindly sent me a lovely note and pictures as well as a couple of recipes. Not only do I appreciate the recipe and kind words but I am so touched at the time she took to send it to me and asked that I share it with the girls. With that I decided to share it with all of my “Godd-etts”. I am using her recipe and also picture that she shared. THANK YOU very “MOOOOOch”  Nancy J.!

Happy Easter to you and yours! God Bless You All!

Happy Easter Treat!

Happy Easter Treat! Easter Paskha

 

1 lb of Dairy Goddess “Naked” Fromage Blanc

1/2-3/4 cup of sugar

1/2 cup of good butter

1/2 cup of cream

1/3 cup of ground almonds

1`tsp lemon zest

1 tsp vanilla

Combine first four ingredients with mixer of food processor. Place in mixing bowl and add the last three ingredients and mix well. Taste for sweetness! (More sugar?)

*Prepare a bowl or a clean terra-cotta flower-pot, lined with a double layer of cheesecloth, (enough to cover the top).

Place the mixture in the *bowl, cover with the cheesecloth, place a plate over this and put on a heavy stone or can. Refrigerate up to 12 hours.

To un-mold, invert bowl over the serving plate, remove cheesecloth, decorate. I use blanched almonds in a design. Great for a lovely Easter Breakfast. You may need to double the recipe.

(Shared so kindly by) NANCY J.

Dairy Goddess Is At It Again! What’s Cookin’? Vanilla Milk, New Cheeses, AND A Grandbaby!

Dairy Goddess Is At It Again! What’s Cookin’? Vanilla Milk, New Cheeses, AND A Grandbaby!

 

I can not believe it has been since November that I have last posted. I ask it often and asking again, “Where does the time go?” I guess we know the answer…it is from being busy. That is a good thing.
My daughter’s wedding was such a wonderful life event. I felt it could not get better than that, but, well it did when they told Tony and I that we are going to be GRANDPARENTS! We are thrilled and live and pray daily to meet this lil’ guy OR gal. (I can’t wait till they find out)!

Don’t think we have been lolli-gaggin’ though…we have been busy as bees! We are just introducing three more cheeses that we are very proud of. Our Mexi-Mozzarella, Goddess Feta and a dreamy Teleme.

We are also just testing out our Vanilla Milk! It is AMAZING and can’t wait to make it available to the masses! It’s ALL natural. No food coloring. Only Whole Milk, Vanilla and Pure Cane Sugar. Perfect for cereal and coffee. I love it cold and straight from the bottle.

I have missed my blogging very much.  I miss writing and sharing. I am better with my Facebook page www.facebook.com/dairygoddesscheese . That is not to say that I don’t LOVE  blogging but often those things you love the most get a little neglected so I promise to try to work on that.

I love my lil’ Godd-ett’s!

As always if you have any questions, please let me know. I am happy to answer them!

Love Always, Your Dairy Goddess

Dairy Goddess : Yep, Cool Cows Are Our Priority And Water Is My Worry!

Cows Cooling Off

Cows Cooling Off

Summertime! It is here with a fury. As a child it was my favorite time of year. When you are young you don’t have as many worries as we do as adults. I used to have fun playing on the dairy, barefoot, making “Big Foot” prints in the fresh cow patties and then running through the “wash pen” to wash off and cool off. I was out there with the cows running around in my swim suit with out a care in the world. My dad made sure the cows were always comfortable. He would keep them longer in the “wash pen” and they were blessed with shades.

We continue to have those comforts for our cows along with soakers, misters and fans! Nonetheless, now as an adult and caretaker of these favored female bovines I worry. We are continually checking to make sure these cooling devices are working and doing their job. We make sure they are eating enough and the food is fresh. We watch their troughs to make sure the water is cool and plentiful.

In the summer we also plant corn. We grow corn to feed our cows along with wheat and alfalfa. I worry about the Central Valley and it’s water availability. There is so much “politics” in the water issue. They only ones who truly suffer is us the farmers, our animals and crops and you the consumer. Water is so important to this Valley and our food supply. Let us never take this for granted. Don’t let big politics lead you to believe it is about saving non-indigenous species. It is about big business, big money that hides behind “heart-strings” for their personal profits and agendas.

I worry about my cows and the crops I grow for them. I pray for water to keep my cows cool and thirst away. I pay that we have enough water to grow our crops and have a plentiful harvest.

Care free summer days for me are gone…but I do thank God for all of the blessings and comforts that my “girls” have. I am grateful for everything that they provide for our family and giving them the very best is the least we can do!

Celebrating My Dairy Dad This Dairy Month

Manuel Borges Jr Dairy Farmer - Father

Manuel Borges Jr
Dairy Farmer – Father

Well here we are in June already. Always a busy month. Between graduations, farming our corn and fathers day. On top of that it is “Dairy Month”.  For a dairy farmer every day is dairy day, week, month and year. The cows need their food and milking everyday, 24 /7 the cows are on our minds and run our daily lives, but we love it and most of us agree it is our calling.

This is the 24th Father’s day without my Dad. I still miss him terribly, yet his legacy and passion lives within me. My Dad was not a man of many words. He liked his routine and was just happy to be in the barn with his beloved cows. We were pretty much polar opposites when it came to socializing and chit-chat. I think he thought me a bit quirky, a bit boisterous, and always on the go. I was just like my mother. It was a yin/yang thing. All I know is it worked. I truly think that my life growing up was as perfect as it gets. I had the best of both worlds. A free and easy, hippy style mom and a quiet hard working Dad that like routine and structure.

We have all of these fancy terms for everything these days. I think that my Dad might have been termed, OCD. He was the cleanest person I have ever met. He spent so much of his time that he should have been sleeping, cleaning. He only slept about 4 hours a night.

My first memories of my Dad was by his side…working and cleaning. You see I was the oldest, I know in his heart I was supposed to be a boy, thus his nickname for me was Bobbi. (He had married later and I was born when he was 35 years old). He needed a worker and well, I ended up doing just that. At four years of age he put steel wool in my hand and taught me to help him scrub the line. My very favorite memories was about that same time when he put me in the big stainless steel milk tank to help him clean it. He said that my hands were nice and small to get into the “crannies”. It was such fun slipping and sliding around. I remember we used a lot of cleaning chemicals. I told him, “Daddy I can’t breath”, he calmly said to me “it’s OK honey, just hold your breath”. I did just that. While others might not think that was the best parenting moment, it was one of my happiest times.

My Dad was even picky about the color of his cows. He liked them mostly black with only a little white on the bottom. When asked why, he would simply reply, “They look cleaner like that”. He was known by many of this preference and any bull in his breeding program reflected this and any cow that was purchased had to fit that bill. (I am blessed to have a aerial photo of our dairy farm and his   “Vacas Pretas”  as he would call them in Portuguese are prevalent and a beautiful keepsake of our life).

That desire for quality and cleanliness was passed down to me. A good product starts with the best quality milk. Once you have the milk, so pure and pristine,  processing it must also retain cleanliness and quality.  The importance of this has been passed onto me and I pass that on through my cheese and milk. So many people tell me that my cheese and milk lasts long after the “best by date”. I tell them that is because of our clean milk and processing. It makes me so very proud. I am so lucky that my husband also is a stickler for quality. It is, to my delight that my daughter, Tara, has also inherited that gene. I am so happy to have her heading up all of our production.

I am sorry that my Dad did not get to see “Dairy Goddess” come to life. I know he would have just shook his head and smiled that crooked grin. My father told me out loud only one time that he was proud of me. That was on my wedding day. I always knew that he was, but like I said he was a man of few words. He did often tell me he loved me, especially towards the end of his life.

There has been many times since his passing that I have heard him. When I had been lost in my thoughts or worried about this thing or that, his voice will pop into my head and say “I love you, Bobbi”… and then it’s gone, but that moment stays with me and I know that he is right here watching the whole thing. Our loved ones never really leave us. We carry them in our hearts and in our actions. We hope that all of the best parts that they gave us are then passed down to our children.

Happy Fathers Day Dad….and to all you Fathers! Don’t forget June is Dairy Month…go on out and celebrate. Think about all of the hard working dairy farmers out there bringing you the best of what Dairy has to offer.

Cheers…preferably a big cold glass of milk!

CA Dairy Farmer Heading AGAIN to Sacramento YES on AB31

The Wheels On The Bus GO Round and Round…..

Yep, we are back at it. Leaving our farms, our jobs, to fight yet again for a fair price. (Thank you to Western United Dairymen and Western Milling for making this bus happen). They realize that the numbers speak volumes and show just how important this is to us dairy farmers.

Secretary of Ag. Karen Ross refused to help…400 dairy families are gone. Assembly Member Richard Pan (9th District) introduced a bill to help California Dairy Farmers.

“Assembly Agriculture Committee set to debate Assembly Bill 31 – – California is on course to losing 100 dairies each year. Assemblyman Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) has proposed new legislation to remedy an unfair cost-setting scheme that threatens to force hundreds of California’s local, family-run dairies to shut down. Assembly Bill 31 will allow the state Agriculture Secretary to change a flawed dairy cost structure that now allows cheese makers to pay far less for milk in California than in other states. “This legislation will fix an unfair set of rules that allows cheese producers to enjoy comfortable profits while dairy farmers risk losing everything,” said Gary Conover, Director of Government Relations for Western United Dairymen. “AB31 will level the playing field for dairy farmers, protect California’s spot as the nation’s top milk producer, and preserve our rich history of supporting family-run farms”

THANK YOU Assemblyman PAN….I appreciate your effort. I PRAY we get this much needed relief. 

YES on AB31 video -Ray Souza

Local supporters of dairy bill heading to Sacramento (click for full story)

 

My Beef with Carrie Underwood

A passionate, beautiful, young agriculture advocate! This post is spot on. Why in the world would animal rights activist want prolonged abuse of animals? Abuse of any kind should be reported immediately…so the suffering could stop….Well done Malorie…Well done!

Take Time For Dairy – Part Of The Worlds “Everyday Things”

Hello Everyone!

Dairy Goddess has missed you. It seems that time goes so fast. I am happy to report all is well on our farm and with Dairy Goddess Farmstead Cheese and Milk.

I love my distributor and the Nor-Cal Whole Foods is treating me very well. We continue to take it day by day and work hard to provide the very best our farm has to offer.

 

On my blog I was sent a link to this amazing video EVERYDAY THINGS . It was sent to me by ThisIsDairyfarming.com . This is a wonderful website by British Dairy Farmers to tell THEIR story. Like our Dairy Farming Today , our website to tell OUR story.

I have said many times… whether you have 10 cows or 10,000 cows, dairy farmers lives revolve around the care and well being of their cows, their land, their water.

That is the same for ALL dairy farmers. Through this blog I have been blessed to get to know many dairy farmer brothers in sisters through out the world and know their story, their lives are the same as mine.

In the days of our grandfathers and fathers they did not have to share what they did. People saw it. Life was more transparent. Now, as so many more people live in cities and are so far removed from the farming / rural life, we have to use tools to bring them to our farms. We need to share what we do and why we do it.

Milk does not come from the store. It comes from us, the dairy farmers, all around the world. So as we embrace our tools to share our farms through technology and the world wide web, I hope you all take a look at all the information out about what we do and why we work so hard to bring you the best nutrition, with quality and pride.

Please look at the facts. Go to the source and ask your dairy farmer see for yourselves with the information provided by dairy farmers. Don’t take for granted “YOUR Everyday Things”.

From our dairy farms (where ever you are in the world)……With love, to your home!

(Thank you Gareth Crew for sharing this with me. I am honored you took the time to do so.) 

 

 

 

California Artisan Cheese Festival March 22-24

Well the Dairy Goddess survived the Fresno Food Expo. It was a great success

Imageand a wonderful way to promote our business and to make some new contacts. I had an opportunity to do  my first radio interview with Chis Daniels at KMJ Talk Radio and it was a lot of fun and I enjoyed the experience. I also had an opportunity to pre-register to participate in next years Fresno Food Expo. It will be here again before you know it!

One thing I have always wanted to do is California’s Artisan Cheese Festival.  It is going to be on March 22-24 in Petaluma, CA. I am a member of the Guild but haven’t had the time to take and enjoy it’s benefits. This year is going to pass without me attending yet again, but I am sharing it with you so that you might go and enjoy all of the fabulous cheeses. I am sure it is like going to cheese heaven.

The Artisan Cheese Festival is the United States’ premier cheese and wine event and will be taking place at the Sheraton Sonoma County in Petaluma as well as various area farms. From cheese-making seminars and beer and cheese pairings, to tasting competitions and and farm tours, this lively weekend will feature top artisan cheese experts, authors, chefs and winemakers from all over Marin and Sonoma counties. There are several new and exciting additions to the lineup this year, including a meet the cheesemakers reception and a Farm Tour that takes guests to LaFranchi Ranch and Keller Estate Winery which features a sit-down three course lunch with guest chef Mayet Cristobal, the Executive Chef for Bon Appetit at the Getty Center in Los Angeles and the Getty Villa in Malibu. Throughout the weekend guests will have the opportunity to experience limited-production, rare artisan cheeses and learn about the art of making cheese, while supporting local and sustainable farmers and cheesemakers in California.

Dairy Goddess Countdown – Fresno Food Expo

I can’t believe it has been already a year! The Fresno Food Expo is already here and things are a bit crazy in preparation as well as tending to all of our regular orders. We continue to service the 37 Nor-Cal Whole Foods so don’t forget to go in an ask for some “Dairy Goddess”. 

The Expo is Thursday March 14, 2013. The public portion is going to be held from 5pm to 8pm at the Fresno Convention Center, Hall 1. Tickets are $40.00 but you can go to www.fresnofoodexpo.com for discount ticket offers. 

Come on out to taste, touch, and try food and beverage products from 106 food exhibitors. It is a great opportunity to learn about local food companies and you will even have a chance to purchase product you like at the show. Dairy Goddess is offering special Expo discounts. 

Supporting local food companies has never tasted so good. 

Also I am asking you to please go to Fresno Food Expo New Products Award (click on link) and vote if you haven’t already. My 3 entries are in the TOP 5 of 55 products. The voting continues until the day of the event. 

All you need to do is 

“Like” each of my products (3 of them, Whole Milk, Chocolate Milk, and my Cheese) along with that please email a vote too. Your support is appreciated and helps our little company get our name out. Remember, I AM our marketing team. 

Our family does it all! So join “OUR” family and take a moment to cast your votes.

Hope to see you at the Expo!

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Dairy Goddess Fulfilling Her Dairy Dreams With Your Help!

As you know. Dairy Goddess Farmstead Cheese and Milk was created by me. Partly as a dream to create products from our cows milk but also out of desperation during the worst economic time in our dairy industry. Trying whatever we could to save our farm.

With the help and support of my husband Tony, my daughter Tara we have done a pretty good job. I am very proud of what we have accomplished in two and a half short years.

I am proud to announce that we just made it into the Northern California Whole Foods 35 plus stores with my Non-Homogenized, Low Pasteurized Whole Milk and Chocolate Milk along with Dairy Goddess Fromage Blanc Cheese. If you are in that region…please go in and tell them you LOVE Dairy Goddess. The real key to this success is to receive and maintain those re-orders.

I have expanded my tiny little plant and product as I have gone along. Dairy Goddess does not have a marketing team. I do not have an advertising budget. We do EVERYTHING ourselves. With that said. I am asking you to help me out. Please go to Fresno Food Expo’s Website (click here) Like their page. Then look at all of the wonderful new San Joaquin Valley New Products that will be highlighted at the Fresno Food Expo on March 14th. Then please LIKE each of my products. I have the Whole Milk / Whole Chocolate Milk and Cheese. Click the like by each of those pictures and that is all you have to do and sharing that with your friends would also be appreciated. This type of promotion is what has got me to where I am now. It is hard to get reach without professionals helping, but with your assistance I could not be happier!

I am the little ant that could….and this ant is going to do her best to keep going!

Thanking you in advance for your help…remember LIKE all Three Dairy Goddess Products by clicking the “thumbs-up” next to it’s picture.

Photo from Hanford Sentinel article

Dairy Goddess LogoImage

Farmers Given Tribute! Dairy Goddess Says “THANKS DODGE”

Isn’t it nicImagee for a change that farmers are given some real and positive recognition…AND it was during the most watched event in the world.

Now let me go back a bit…I did not see the Dodge commercial titled “So God Made A Farmer” yesterday, during the Superbowl but one of my daughters friends, Claudia Avila, posted on my Facebook wall…

“Hope you saw that farmer commercial for Ram…totally thought of you guys. Xoxo”

I was so bummed that I missed it but Thank God for You Tube (click to view) I watched it, and watched again. It brought tears to my eyes and I swelled with pride. I thought, finally…a shout out to all of the farmers that feed our nation…our world and they are supporting Future Farmers of America to boot! Wow that is so cool!

I was so happy that Claudia, a beautiful, sweet, twenty-something that lives in the city, away from farms saw that commercial and took that moment to share that she thought of us. THANK YOU Claudia that make me very proud.

The commercial’s impact continues. It has been all the buzz this morning on the talk shows and I was so happy to hear “Kelly and Michael” say how much they loved it and made them think about how hard farmers work. It is nice to have this good media attention for a change.

I am happy to say that I do drive a Dodge and this farmer thanks you! 

 

Correction! Dairy Goddess Bumbles! Shock Of CDFA Decision.

My dear readers I want to apologize at my blunder regarding our very complicated / very confusing pricing system that dairy farmers have to deal with.

In my angst, hurt, frustration, tears, and disgust I made a mistake in my previous blog post. 

Instead of receiving the token .25 cents per 100 gallons of milk for 3 months. It should be .25 cents per 100 weight (CWT). 100 CWT is 11.6 gallons. (This correction does not minimize the slap that CDFA gave to California dairy farmers, by awarding their slight token of appeasement) but I did want to be clear to my readers whom I hold so dear.

Again, my apologies. It is clear that I am not a professional writer. Though, there is no doubt that this blog comes from my heart and all of the emotions it holds.

Sorry for the confusion.  

Barbara Martin / Dairy Goddess

CA. Dairy Farmers Slapped In The Face. CDFA Sides with Processors Yet Again!

Well yesterday we received the decision regarding the emergency CDFA hearing that was held on 12/21/12 (note, on the day of the hearing, Secretary Ross was not even there, while the room was filled with hard working dairy farmers that left their farms at 3 am to make their importance of this issue known. She obviously had more important things to do on that Friday before Christmas).

We went there, pleading that California dairy farmers receive some much needed relief. We, dairy farmers in California receive $2.00 per 100 gallons of milk less than the rest of the nation. We have the highest regulations and costs. In a nutshell it costs us more to feed our animals than what we are getting paid. (We can all thank corn being produced and mandated for Ethanol (thank them also for your higher grocery bill). This corn to ethanol is a joke and more political corruption. It is not efficient, but too many wealthy, very powerful lobbying has corrupted their mindset and throw common sense out the door. 

The CDFA has it’s own cost of production costs that show this and is officially reported and published.

The cheese-makers here in California cry they will not survive if we are given any such relief. It cost them too much money to deal with their whey (the left over after cheese is made). It is a known fact that most of the cheese-makers in CA are making record profits that includes processing that valuable whey protein. They stand behind the couple that do not process it and say if they pay more they will be in dire straights. Their greed eventually will bite them as if things don’t change they will have to fight for what milk might be left in this state. They are worried about paying now? Wait till there is not enough dairies to provide milk to go around. 

The frustrating part of this is that all of the other states cheese-makers are managing and profiting. I believe, ever stronger, that we need to dump our state system and join the Federal Order. It might not be any better, but it could not get much worse. Besides I would no longer be part of this greedy, regulated, state system that can not even read their own data that shows that dairies are closing weekly. Four hundred dairy families gone. It is obvious CDFA can care less. So why stay in such a system that favors only one side. At least we would be on the same playing field as the dairy farmers in the nation.

The cheese-makers have some sick-corrupt control over the CDFA. It is a dark and demented cloud. They do not appreciate the valuable economic impact we have provided and treat us as an uneducated pebble in their shoe. They believe they are saving us from ourselves and protecting us from our habitual over production.  

So, in a nutshell (rounding it off)…we asked for $1.00 per hundred gallons of milk extra from the processors for 6 months of relief. We received .25cents per hundred gallons of milk for 3 months.

A true slap in our face and more proof of this unhealthy alliance between the state and processors. Though, I hope the CDFA doesn’t think that they “won” (they do have more points) but please know we have only just begun. You are dealing with a new generation of dairy farmers.

I no longer support this “TASK FARCE” trying to get producers and processors on the same page. This here proves they can not even agree to give us temporary relief when we need it the most. They see that we are short on milk. What makes us think they will work with us ever if they go against us now?

We need to demand change and continue to fight for what is right and FAIR! We need our co-ops to stand together with us and start taking control.

 

CDFA announces temporary 25 cent hike for four months

The CDFA today released its much anticipated announcement on the Dec. 21, 2012 milk pricing hearing, saying it would temporarily increase Class 1,2,3, 4a and 4b prices by approximately $0.251/cwt for the period of Feb. 1 to May 31, 2013. The announcement by Candace gates, chief of the Dairy Marketing Branch, provided these details:
•    Increasing the Class 1 price approximately $0.05/cwt by adding:• $0.0006 per pound to the milk fat price.• $0.0045 per pound to the milk solids-not-fat price. • $0.0001 per pound to the milk fluid carrier price.
•    Increasing the Class 2 and 3 prices approximately $0.10/cwt by adding:• $0.0082 per pound to both the milk fat and milk solids-not-fat prices
•    Increasing the Class 4a and 4b prices approximately $0.30/cwt by adding:• $0.0246 per pound to both the milk fat and milk solids-not-fat prices.

The Hearing Determinations, Panel Report, Stabilization Plans and a more detailed explanation of the department’s decision can be found on the Dairy Marketing website www.cdfa.ca.gov/dairy  by clicking on the Hearing Matrix. Jan. 22, 2013 CDFA Notice 

Wishing You All A Very “Dairy” Christmas!

I want to wish all of you a very Merry “Dairy” Christmas!

Let us take this time to pray for the repair of our Government and our country.

Help those that have the power to make change do so for the betterment of our people.

Let us take joy in all that we have in our lives and appreciate all of those things that our truly important. 

I appreciate all of you and your continued support of my blog, of Dairy Goddess Farmstead Cheese and Milk and Tony Martin Dairy.

May we all blessed with a prosperous 2013. 

O God, whose mighty Son was born in Bethlehem those days long ago, lead us to that same poor place, where Mary laid her tiny Child. 

And as we look on in wonder and praise, make us welcome Him in all new life, see Him in the poor, and care for His handiwork the earth, the sky and the sea. 

O God, bless us again in your great love.  We pray for this through Christ our Lord.  Amen.

 

Dairy Goddess Testifies At The CDFA in Sacramento

I have just gotten back from Sacramento. Karen Ross had called a hearing to raise all Class Milk prices for up to 6 month to help dairy farmers through this terrible crisis. Mind you getting to a meeting in Sacramento at 7 am on the Friday before Christmas was no easy task.

I was proud to see many dairy farmers there. There were also plenty of processors there to fight it. Their lack of empathy toward our dairy crisis is disturbing. 

I have been up since 230 am so I will post my testimony for you to read. There was a lot of very good producer testimony and I do hope that we were heard.

 

I am here today urging you to increase the pay price that dairy farmers receive.
We have been receiving nearly $2.OO less per hundred weight than the rest of the 
United States for far too long. Along with that we have the highest costs and 
the highest regulations as well as providing the highest quality of milk.

300 dairy families gone along with another 100 this year.

We have been pleading and petitioning for a year all to be denied and delayed. 
All the while many dairy families have lost or  are losing their generational 
farms and culling generational herds.  We hear from processors that we need to 
become more efficient . I can guarantee you this ... The dairy farmers that are 
still in business today have become efficient or else they would not be in 
business today. I would only hope that our government would become as efficient 
as  us dairy farmers...we would not be on the fiscal cliff we are standing on 
right now.

Have any of you ever here seen a dairy farmer walk around his dairy after the 
cows have left for slaughter? It is heart breaking...it is a memory that will 
never leave me. I pray that no more dairy families have to take that walk.

Those of us still here are fighting for our lives.  Yet, as we fight for our 
lives our main concern is to feed and care for our cows. Everything we do 
revolves around our animals that is pressure that you will never understand. 
Getting the cows fed and feeling relived, only, then to have the burden of 
figuring out how you are going to cover your other bills like payroll, 
electric,fuel,insurance, environmental regulation fees and God help us if we 
have a blown tire on the tractor or a pump goes out. I do not wish the stress 
and pressure on any of you. Though I would like for you to walk in my shoes for 
a day...

We dairy families rallied on the Capitol steps in September and October . Only 
to be treated as a minor nuisance.  It was disheartening for so many but I am 
extremely proud that,  finally, California dairy farmers And 3 of our major 
co-ops stood together. 

I am disappointed in the actions of Secretary Ross and the CDFA. I would never 
expect you to work and not receive a fair wage for what you do. Yet you have sat 
back and watched the demise of so many dairy families knowing that we were 
receiving so much less than the rest of the nation. Shame on you CDFA for 
waiting so long and hoping it would fix itself as it has done in the past. Shame 
on you for not appreciating the California dairy families and all they have 
contributed to California.

In March of this year was the first I heard of the forming of a task force to 
fix our industry for the long term. I pray for its success.  As predicted,  It 
had not started off to be very fruitful. The one plus I see from there meeting 
is that Sec Ross could see for herself the true line in the sand between 
producers and processors.

There is a dark, sinister cloud that looms in our industry. I hope that we can 
work to change our system for a healthy dairy industry in the future and to rid 
the dark forces that shadow it.

Here we are at years end asking yet again, to be given some type of relief as a 
result of this hearing. I urge you to act swiftly. We are hanging on by a thread 
and for too many it is already too late.