Eat more cheese and save a farm!!!

Eat more cheese, darn it!!

Eat more cheese, darn it!!

You may have noticed story in the Baltimore Sun this morning…about how many Maryland dairy farmers are on the edge of going under, because the price of milk has plummeted drastically…because of the combination of  several global events. Now I know what you’re thinking…hey, I like the the fact that milk is cheaper….buzz off ! And while I get that, I think you’ll agree, the idea of family dairy farms going out of business, and families selling off entire herds and the land they’re on for yet more development is odious. It is to me anyway.

Chapel’s Country Creamery  in Easton, is one such farm…the Foster family (Eric and Holly and their four children) are hanging on to their farm, by their fingernails. They had to sell two cows to slaughter already, and more may need to go. One bright spot for the Foster’s is Holly Foster’s brilliant idea to make artisan cheese…so one-tenth of their milk heads to Pennsylvania…because you can make raw milk cheese there…and the milk contains no antibiotics, no chemicals…just lovely fresh milk.  They oversee the process from start to finish. Until I read the story, I had forgotten I bought some of Holly’s cheese at the St. Michael’s  Food and Wine Festival last year….they sell their cheeses there, and at various farmer’s markets, and some stores, and some restaurants who are part of the local food movement (you can find where online or order online at the link above)….and let me tell you, the Chapelle Cave Aged Cheese was “udderly” delicious. Sorry.

So how about it? Make a difference in someone’s life today, and do yourself a favor at the same time. You and I can’t do diddly about the price of milk, but we can buy cheese from the farm. And help out a Maryland family when they could use it. And save a beautiful farm from more houses dotting the bucolic landscape of the Eastern Shore. And eat some fabulous cheese. Put some in that mac and cheese recipe I gave you last week. Moo.


8 Responses

  1. Donna, It is a great idea to support the local farmers. My sister-in-law lost her husband to cancer in 2003 and with her 4 children has managed to keep their farm going. In addition to the local farmers markets, she is doing something called community based agriculture – where customers pay a fixed fee at the beginning of the season and then get a basket of fresh, locally grown produce each week all season. It is a win-win situation for everyone !

  2. Bonnie where is the farm? Not too long ago I watched a documentary called “Farmer John” I think….about a guy who saved his family farm doing exactly the same thing!

  3. Thank you for your article on Dairy farms. MD dairy farms need to stay. Too many farms have disappeared. I have been told that there are more MD cars at dairy farms in PA buying fresh unprocessed milk because farmers can not sell it here. Maybe some laws should be reviewed.

  4. Donna, sounds like the making of a good story. I know I’d be interested how available this is locally.

  5. It is Pahl’s farm located in Granite, MD – they are at the Baltimore City market with their produce under the JFX on Sundays

  6. Thanks for the tip Bonnie. Do you know of any in Frederick County? Baltimore is a bit of a drive for me. In my small town we have a Farmer’s Market in the summer on Saturday mornings. The trouble is there are few farmers that attend. I really like that idea of weekly fresh produce delivery. I’d sign up for it in a heart beat. Frederick County used to be one of the leading milk producing counties in the country but over the years a different crop has been growing at a fast pace. That crop is called houses and it has been the downfall of many family farms. It is a double-edged sword. The farmers work so very hard in all types of weather 24/7 and sometimes have very little to show for their efforts. Along comes a developer with a million or two in his hand and bye-bye farmer. I don’t blame either of them but I hate to see it happen.

  7. Bob, See the Carroll County Times website for an article about
    local produce that was in the paper on Sat Feb 28. It is under news and then archives – search with “Carroll farms produce” to find the article. There is a mention in the article of a website to find farms nearby – hope that helps !

  8. Thanks Bonnie. I see there is one just outside of Thurmont. Can’t get much closer then that for me. I plan on giving them a try.

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