June is National Dairy Month and a time to celebrate the contributions dairy farmers make to our daily lives and, of course, enjoy delicious and nutritious dairy. What better way to celebrate than to directly support a Connecticut dairy farm?
More than 97 percent of dairy farms in Connecticut are family run and visiting one is a perfect opportunity to get an up-close view of how farmers care for their cows and for the environment. Plus, you get the opportunity to taste fresh dairy. Here are a few farms to consider.
Fish Family Farm Creamery & Dairy – Located in Bolton, the farm has a beautiful setting on over 200 acres with a winding driveway and split rail fencing. Visitors can enjoy fresh milk, ice cream and other delicious treats. Their Jersey herd of cows makes for exceptional milk with higher butterfat content and protein. They have also hosted “Farm Day” to raise money for the Lutz Childrens Museum and have games, farm animals, food, music and they supply the ice cream. In addition, they have car shows every Monday night from 5-7 through October with food trucks and music, all to raise money for Lymphoma research. Learn more on their Facebook page.
Fort Hill Farms – With over 200 milking cows, this family-owned farm in Thompson produces milk and cream used in the production of Cabot Cheese and The Farmer’s Cow milk and ice cream. Visitors can immerse themselves in nature’s beauty all year long and they offer unique experiences each season of the year. For June Dairy Month, they want to highlight their whole milk which from cows to fridge is not touched by human hands and has very little processing. The farm also has an Anaerobic Digester, which captures methane and uses bacteria to break down organic matter for uses such as biogas or for cow bedding and crop irrigation. Learn more on their website.
Shaggy Coos Farm – As the southernmost dairy farm in New England, this female-run farm is located in Easton and describes itself as “small but mighty.” Shaggy Coos produces all their dairy products right on the farm all while reducing their carbon footprint. Their farm store offers a variety of dairy products and other options, and it operates on the honor system. Their chocolate milk, described as “boldly under sweet to accentuate the cocoa flavor and highlight the fresh creamy milk,” is by far their most popular product and loved by many. For more information and hours, visit their website.
Calf and Clover Creamery – Yogurt lovers, rejoice! This dairy farm makes a local and wonderful whole milk, cream top yogurt that has a perfect balance of creamy and lightly tart. While plain is their most popular, don’t miss trying the vanilla yogurt that is made from Madagascar vanilla beans and vodka and aged for 4 months. They are located at what is locally known as “The gateway to Cornwall,” and one special aspect of their operation is special because on top of intensively pasture-grazing their cows, they keep the cows together with their female calf, who receives milk exclusively from its mother while it is growing. They say they find this results in vigorous, robust cows who become their next generation of milkers. Learn more on their website.
Kingswood Farm – Located in the northeastern part of the state in Brooklyn, this dairy farm is completely family run. They host farm tours and have a lot of frequent visitors to see and pet the cows. They are part of a coop that produces Cabot and McCadam Cheese. In addition, Mystic Cheese is a local cheese company that uses their milk to make cheese that’s shipped across the country.
These are just a handful of dairy farms in CT to visit. Here is a full list of farms near you that you can visit to celebrate June Dairy Month, or at any time of the year. Happy June Dairy Month!