"Do you need some cheese with that wine?"
About our herd and farming practices:
Grass-Based Dairy Farming
We, in the spirit of good land stewardship, are managers of the primary plant of God’s creation – grass.
We harvest this grass in the most ecologically correct manner we can by our cooperation with the laws of nature and dictates of the bovine species. We then sell her milk as a reward for our stewardship and gain the satisfaction of providing for our families and our communities in a manner that violates neither the earth nor those that tread upon it.
Five Corner Posts of Sustainable Farming
1.Farming that is profitable enough to cash flow today and generate enough capital to allow the next generation to pay a fair price for the farm in the future 2.Farming that fits our way of life, our values, and our goals 3.Farming that can be done by most farmers, not just the best 4.Farming increases rather than depletes the farm’s soil and resources 5.Farming that attracts our children to the farming way of life
Martha and Tom’s Farm is fulfilling the grass-based dairy principles by:
1.We are starting with the grass that God and the Brinkman family gave us and adding the organic clover that a good dairy cow needs for a well-rounded diet. 2.We started with soil tests and then have a soil improvement plan that lives up to organic principles. 3.We have worked with the local conservation commission (Thanks, Mark!) to create non-eroding cow lanes and watering system. 4.We plotted out a paddock system that helps the cow cut the grass evenly and have fresh grass to produce high-quality milk and cheese. If you watch a cow, the grass is ready to be harvested by the cow when it is as high as her eyes when she is eating and the harvest is over when you can see her nose when she is eating. For our Jersey cows, grass at 8 to 10 inches tall is ready to eat. Grasses that are 4 inches or less is ready to rest and grow. 5.We breed our cows to standards for cheese merit, as well as cows that are denoted as doing well in a grazing environment. 6.We raise registered Jersey cows because they have the lowest carbon footprint. For their size, they produce the most amount of quality milk for cheese than any other breed. Besides, they are so good looking!