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Posts Tagged ‘agriculture’

Wow…here we are February 2015. I can not believe that my last post was on 4/29/14. I am so sorry that I have been away from my blog for so long. As I have said before, I love blogging. I believe that blogging gave me the confidence to start Dairy Goddess Farmstead Cheese and Milk. I never would believe that it would continue to grow and become what it has today. I am still running the dairy and Dairy Goddess. I am spread very thin and so the time for blogging has been difficult. 2014 was a great and exciting year. So many wonderful changes have blessed our life. I will break down the past year to get you up to speed.

January 2014 – After 2 months of marriage, my daughter Tara, also my right hand in running the daily business of Dairy Goddess found out that she and her husband Shane would be having a baby. My first grand child. I can not tell you the joy this brought to all of us. I was craving a new baby to bless us and the start of the 5th generation on our farm. Tara announces pregnancy

 

February 2014- We began making our California Style Curds in Plain and Seasoned. They are great as a snack and they melt beautifully and make a great addition to your favorite “cheesy” recipes.

March 2014- We began raising free range chickens! What started out as a hobby for Tony, he LOVES little chicks, actually any baby critter steals his heart. He kept bring home little chicks and we all know what happens…they grow up…. Dairy Goddess Farmstead Eggs was born…”We love’m like our Cows”  eggs in carton

 

April 2014- Tony and I celebrated our 31st Wedding Anniversary. We also found out the our 1st grandchild was going to be a GIRL!

Tara Baby Cake announcement

May 2014- We got our 3rd Refrigeration van, or as I like to call it…Chariot for Dairy Goddess to transport her goodness!

DG Van 3

 

June 2014- A.J. finds out that he was accepted as a transfer student for Veterinarian Medicine at Oklahoma State University. We were all so thrilled that he would be closer to home.  We knew at that moment that we would be able to go and visit which we did in October for OSU’s homecoming. What a blast that was and we were so lucky to get to go with my cousins, the Walton’s. Their son Brandon is completing his undergrad there.

OKC AJ OSU homecoming 2014

 

July 2014- Dairy Goddess Farmstead Cheese wins 1st place in the flavored-fresh cheese category  for our “Valley” (Peaches, Almonds, & Honey) Fromage Blanc, at the American Cheese Society Awards in Sacramento, CA. What an honor! To win among the many other great entries made us so very proud.   ACS Cheese Awards

August 2014- Dairy Goddess celebrated it’s 4th year in business.

September 2014- It was all hustle and bustle for Dairy Goddess as we prepared for Tara and Shane’s baby to arrive. Tara does so much for DG so we needed our ducks in a row. We were all getting so excited to meet Baby Girl Rodrigues!

October 2014- Finally on the 8th of October, God blessed us with our newest Little Goddess, Delilah Dolores Rodrigues. She was perfect. She completely stole our hearts and is the very center of our life. Barbara and Delilah Hospital

November 2014- It was only a month after Delilah joined our clan but we had prepared and completed a 3rd Party Audit for Dairy Goddess Farmstead Cheese and Milk. It was a two day inspection to make sure we are doing everything possible to bring our customers the best quality products produced in compliance of the state and major store chains. We also decided to upgrade our website and invite you to take a look at it. We are very proud of how it turned out.

December 2014- I had made the tough decision to leave my Board of Director seat for the California Milk Advisory Board I loved serving the dairy farmers in California. It was important to me to be a voice for my fellow dairymen and to do my best to direct that our milk marketing dollars were being spent thoughtfully and assuring their hard earned money was being put to good use to market the milk that they produce. As Dairy Goddess has grown I realized that I would not be able to give 100 percent to that seat’s responsibility. We had a beautiful dinner and so many kind words were said and I truly felt appreciated for the 6 years that I had served.  CMAB apprecation certificate

January 2015- We started 2015 with a bang! We baptized our sweet Delilah and then were off to San Francisco for the Winter Fancy Food Show this is the largest food and beverage show on the West Coast. It was amazing and felt very successful. We could not believe how many fabulous products from around the world that were there and how large the show itself was. We were proud to be a part of it. Fancy food show 2015

 

One of my New Years Resolutions is to blog more…I promise to work on that. I love sharing our life with you. I appreciate you taking the time to visit this blog and my website. I would love for you to like my Facebook Page too. That is a quick way to stay in touch with our latest shenanigans!

One last thought. We are still in a terrible drought here in California. We have had a bit of rain and hoping for a wet February. We ask for you to keep us in your thoughts and prayers as all of Agriculture in California is suffering and if we do not get rain and also reform for water in this state it will affect us all. This drought is truly a crisis.

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Dairy Goddess Farmstead Cheese & Milk

 

Hello “Godd-etts”! Spring has sprung that is for sure. Many of our seasonal farmers markets begin shortly. We are always excited to start Hanford Farmers Market on Thursdays Old Town Clovis Farmers Market  and Cayucos Farmers Market on Fridays.

I thought I would share with you many of the Frequently Asked Questions at my markets and by my many store customers. I am always happy to answer any questions anyone has. If there is not one answered here…please just let me know.

Hope to see you soon!

Barbara

FAQ for Dairy Goddess Farmstead Cheese & Milk

 

Are you organic?

 

We practice primarily organic though not certified

 

 

Are the cows grass-fed?

 

We have a nutritionist that works weekly with my husband to formulate the best diet for our cows. They use the corn and wheat and alfalfa we grow on our farm. They also get fresh citrus, almond, and other nutrients that are mixed fresh twice daily. 

 

 

Are your cows happy?

 

Of course! Our whole goal is to create our animals comfort and well-being. Not only morally…but a happy cow makes more milk.

 

Are your cows confined?

 

We raise our cows in open corrals with shades available to them. On hot days they have soakers and misters to cool them and on hot days they have warm water for their wash up.

 

Do you remove the calves from their mothers?

 

They spend a few hours or longer with their calves (calves are up and walking almost immediately) and then the calves are placed in their private pen so that they will not be exposed to dangers. We also can better monitor them to make sure they are eating and drinking. They are monitored for about 45 to 60 days when they are moved to age appropriate group pens.

 

Do you raise your bull calves?

 

Yes we do

 

Do your cows have hormones?

 

All mammals have natural hormones but we do not supplement them with Rbst

 

Is there antibiotics in your milk?

 

Our milk as in all milk is tested numerous times as in compliance with the government and our cooperatives. Cheese will not make if there are antibiotics SO of course we do not!

 

Do you treat your cows with antibiotics?

 

Yes. Only if necessary. As we did with ourselves and our children. They are often similar medications. We have a “hospital” pen where they are monitored and the milk for the ill cows is discarded.

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After a year and a half of planning…my daughter Tara celebrated her wedding to Shane Rodrigues on November 2, 2013. It was a perfect day. We could not be any more happy. We managed to run business as usual and Dairy Goddess Farmstead Cheese and Milk as well as Tony Martin Dairy continued with out a hitch. It took a team effort and prayer and we got it done. We appreciate all of the well wishes that we received and are grateful to all of our customers blessings and support.

The Original Team Dairy Goddess

The Original Team Dairy Goddess

Along with getting back to reality I want to get back to my blog which has taken the back seat through all of this.

It is no secret that I believe that we need to take our food back “old school”. Less processing, more natural. Keeping the integrity of the food that we consume for maximum benefit, the way it was intended.

My cousin, Anita Caole, shared with me the Margarine VS Butter information. I thought it was fitting as we are getting towards the holidays with extra cooking and baking. We should be striving towards more WHOLE and NATURAL foods with everything in moderation. We have been on a dangerous path with the “mutilation” of food by processing. Read your labels….less is more! Besides, it just tastes better! I hope you find this information helpful. Please pass it on…many of us do not have any idea!

Margarine was originally manufactured to fatten turkeys. When it killed the turkeys, the people who had put all the money into the research wanted a payback so they put their heads together to figure out what to do with this product to get their money back.

It was a white substance with no food appeal so they added the yellow coloring and sold it to people to use in place of butter. How do you like it? They have come out with some clever new flavorings….

DO YOU KNOW.. The difference between margarine and butter?

Read on to the end…gets very interesting!

Both have the same amount of calories.

Butter is slightly higher in saturated fats at 8 grams; compared to 5 grams for margarine.

Eating margarine can increase heart disease in women by 53% over eating the same amount of butter, according to a recent Harvard Medical Study.

Eating butter increases the absorption of many other nutrients in other foods.

Butter has many nutritional benefits where margarine has a few and only because they are added!

Butter tastes much better than margarine and it can enhance the flavors of other foods.

Butter has been around for centuries where margarine has been around for less than 100 years .

And now, for Margarine..

Very High in Trans fatty acids.

Triples risk of coronary heart disease …

Increases total cholesterol and LDL (this is the bad cholesterol) and lowers HDL cholesterol, (the good cholesterol)

Increases the risk of cancers up to five times..

Lowers quality of breast milk

Decreases immune response.

Decreases insulin response.

These facts alone were enough to have me avoiding margarine for life and anything else that is hydrogenated (this means hydrogen is added, changing the molecular structure of the substance).

Open a tub of margarine and leave it open in your garage or shaded area. Within a couple of days you will notice a couple of things:

* no flies, not even those pesky fruit flies will go near it (that should tell you something)

* it does not rot or smell differently because it has no nutritional value ; nothing will grow on it. Even those teeny weeny microorganisms will not a find a home to grow.

Pass the BUTTER PLEASE”

 

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Non-Homogenized Lightly Pasteurized "Cream Top" Milk Nectar From Our Dairy

Non-Homogenized Lightly Pasteurized “Cream Top” Milk
Nectar From Our Dairy

I drink whole milk and eat full-fat yogurt, cream cheese, and sour cream. Sure, full-fat dairy products taste better than the skim/fat-free versions, but I don’t eat them for the taste. I eat full-fat dairy because it’s better for my health and my weight.

Yep, you heard me right: I eat dairy products with all the fat god gave ‘em, and I do it because it’s good for me.

Here’s why:

1. Our bodies cannot digest the protein or absorb the calcium from milk without the fat.

2. Vitamins A and D are also fat-soluble. So you can’t absorb them from milk when all the fat has been skimmed off. (This makes fortified skim milk the biggest sham of all — you can pump fat-free milk full of a year’s supply of vitamins A and D, but the body can’t access them).

3. Milk fat contains glycosphingolipids, types of fats linked to immune system health and cell metabolism.

4. Contrary to popular belief, low-fat and fat-free diets do not help prevent heart disease, and science has now revealed that the link between saturated fat (long villainized as a cause of heart disease) and heart disease is tenuous at best.

5. In fact, studies now show that eating saturated fat raises good cholesterol — the kind of cholesterol you want and need in your body.

6. The world’s healthiest foods are whole foods — foods that have not been processed. Why? The nutrients in whole foods have a natural synergy with one another — that is, they work best in and are most beneficial to the body when they are taken together (not when they are isolated in, say, beta-carotene supplements of Vitamin C capsules). So when you pull some or all of the fat out of milk, you throw its nutritional profile out of whack. Basically, you discard all of the health benefits when you discard the fat.

7. And last but definitely not least: healthy dietary fat will NOT make you fat. We’ve been taught for years that dietary fat is the root of all evil. But we need healthy fat in our diet for proper body composition and long-term weight maintenance. The key factor here is knowing the difference between good fats and bad fats (for more on good and bad fats and the role healthy fat plays in weight maintenance..

A final note: When it comes to whole milk, you should also drink nonhomogenized when you can. Homogenization is “the technique of crushing milkfat globules into droplets too small to rise to the surface in a cream layer,” writes Anne Mendelson in Milk: The Surprising Story of Milk Through the Ages (Knopf, 2008). Homogenization offered two big advantages to the dairy industry: (1) the abolition of the “creamline,” as it’s called, made it possible to package milk in more convenient [read: disposable] cardboard packaging instead of traditional glass bottles and (2) homogenizing made it possible for a commercial dairy to “calculate the amount of fat in incoming milk, completely remove it, and homogenize it back into milk in any desired proportion…In effect, ‘whole milk’ could now be whatever the industry said it was.”

To put it more bluntly: homogenized whole milk isn’t whole. The dairy-processing industry decided that whole milk should be milk with 3.25% fat (raw milk straight from the cow averages between 4 – 5.5% fat). That way, no matter what cow produced the milk, after homogenization all the milk would taste the same.

When you buy homogenized milk, you’re buying a whole food that isn’t whole — it’s had it’s fat removed, evened out, and injected back into it in an amount less than what appears in nature. So choose whole milk, skip homogenization, and enjoy!
By Laine Bergeson, Experience Life

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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!

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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!

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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

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