By Eldon Hooley
Take the milk at Rosey Ridge Farm, our dairy farm near Grandview. It comes from mostly Jersey and Jersey crossed with Brown Swiss and Holstein cows that graze on all natural pastures.
Jersey is a favorite in family operations where the small cow is desired for ease of handling by children and pasture grazing. Jersey milk is also very rich (creamy) and tastes good. Brown Swiss is our next favored breed. They are big, slow, and easy going. They are also more heat tolerant than the Jersey; that’s important here in Texas.
To get the best of both worlds, we’ve crossed the Jersey with the Brown Swiss giving us cows that are smaller, heat tolerant, give rich milk, and are good natured. It seems the best comes out in the two breeds so we will continue to breed for this mix.
We have a Grade A Raw Milk Dairy license and thirty cows that each produce from four to five gallons of milk a day during peak production. Production falls of a bit during the summer Texas heat even for a cow that has recently given birth to a calf—or “freshened”--and has just started lactation.
We program our breeding cycle to freshen our cows in the fall so we have fewer cows milking over the hottest part of the summer. This eases the stress level on the cows and we’re able to adjust our work load to the seasons as well.
Our cows are grazed on grass and winter grasses that we plant in September and October. So the best grazing is in fall, winter, and spring. Cows grazed on all natural pastures can have an effect on flavor.
Because Jersey’s are good foragers, they will sometimes eat certain plants that change the flavor of their milk, and milk drinkers who are interested in seeking out all natural operations should realize this potential. Following a great spring rain the grasses are lush and nutritious but may give our milk a slightly “grassy” taste. It’s just part of being all natural.
We also make aged Cheddar, Parmesan, and Feta cheeses on the farm.
We enjoy visitors so don’t hesitate to give us a call or email and come our way to enjoy the great scenery and spend some time with us and the cows at Rosey Ridge Farm.
For more information about or to purchase products contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org