Organic

At our farm we choose for a natural technique for the total process. This means for us from the base (ground) untill the sail of our cheese. Our experience learns us that the less is intervened, the better the taste of our cheese is. To list a few examples of intervening: fertiliser, pesticides, synthetic vitamins, refined salt, GMO concentrate, calcium chloride, nitric acid and natamycin. These are not applied at our farm. During the process of making cheese we also keep it as simple as possible: we don’t homogenise, skim, thermize/pasteurize or bactofugate.

To be able to answer more questions we asked our customers to ask their questions about our biological business. The Q&A are found below:

Q(uestions) & A(nswers)
  1. Is there no antibiotics used at all at your farm?

    Ofcourse, antibiotics are used. It’s a misconception that biological businesses can’t use antibiotics. However, the difference is in the fact how we handle antibiotics, in comparison to common dairy farms. In principle, there’s nothing wrong with antibiotics, provided that it’s used responsibly. We will only use antibiotics if a cow needs it, for instance because of surgery. We don’t share the vision of companies who don’t use antibiotics. From the biological perspective and as an animal lover you should treat an animal so that it can cure.

    When we treat a cow we will not process the milk for a longer period, for a longer period than is obligated with common dairy farms. Unfortunately, this costs us money, but we get a happy, healthy cow in return.

  2. Does the taste change of the cheese when you are biological?

    We can be clear about this: Yes. The taste of the fresh ‘unpasteurised’ milk starts with the food of our cows, so also the land where they graze in. This is the basis. In our organic land herbs, clover and different types of gras scan be found. This is not only good fort he insects but also good fort he cows. A diversity of herbs is important for the mineral resources for the animals. Herbs are natural ‘medicines’ fort he cows. The cows often know which ones they can eat and when.

  3. Does your concentrated food come from for instance South America?

    No, our concentrated food does not come from South America. Almost all corn and soy coming from outside of Europe gets altered genetically so they can endure amongst other things “round up” (glyphosate). This poison is used a lot in the whole world which has serious consequences for amonst other things insects and the environment. By feeding biological concentrate food we avoide that poison enters our food chain.

  4. Does this biological approach have a future? The world can not be fed if everything is 100% biological.

    Apart from the discussion if it’s possible or not, we believe that every individual can make a difference. So can we! We think we are allowed to use our piece of the earth instead of exhausting it. By working with a natural approach throughout the whole chain we burden nature at least as possible. Fortunately, in Holland there’re possiblilities for biological products and consumers choose more and more for biological alternatives. We believe that our biological approach has a good future in Holland.

  5. Do the calves stay with the mother cow?

    Yes,  7 days. The issue is generally a delicate issue concerning the dairy farm sector. In an ideal world the calf would grow up with the mother, but then we would encounter pratical problems. To name a good example: cows are being milked twice a day in the milking stable or several times by the milk robot. If every cow would bring her calf with her it wouldn’t fit and accidents will happen. Accidents will also happen in the free range stable. The most common accident is trampling of the calf. The negative image what is made by the media, that the calf would drink all the milk of the mother en the dairy farmer can not sell that milk anymore, is arbitrary and proves that a lot of people do not kwow exactly how it works.

    However, our new organic stable where we milk our cows with a milkrobot is designed specially to keep the calf longer with the mother cow. The front of the stable has a big round straw area which is located near the milk robot. From here the mother cow can go tot he milk robot with priority and the calf will not be able to walk with her, whereafter the mother cow will return to her calf. This area of the stable is accessible for everyone.

  6. Will the cheese now be more expensive?

    Yes, our cheese will become as expected € 1,50 per kilo more expensive. Amongst other things this is necessary because we have less grass yield from our land (we need more land). The cause is that we can’t use fertilizer and have to bring less organic manure on our land. Also choices like healthier concentrate influece the prices of the cheese. Because we handle the whole chain ourselves our cheese remains affordable.

  7. You sold all your cheese already by yourselves, why becoming organic? Don’t you make it more difficult for yourselves?

    This new approach of venturing goes with us. We’re always searching for new challenges. Finding the easiest way we normally think is not the must fun one. We’ve choosen with the four of us (Rien, Teuni, René and Sander) for this approach and will make this, together with our customers, a succes. We believe we may use our land instead of exhausting it.

  8. Where can we buy your cheese?

    Our cheese can be bought in Holland at our farm shop, in the local Jumbo and in specialty shops in the region. A large part is sold outside our country borders.

  9. How do we know that organic is really organic?

    We are inspected by the SKAL organisation. SKAL Biocontrol functions as supervisor for demonstrable reliability of biological products in Holland.

    An agriculture product or food can only be called biological if the pdoduction process meets legal standards. The European government determines the standards.

  10. Is organic farming also more animal friendly?

    Most of the time people think this but it doesn’t have to be. At a lot of common dairy farms the cows go also outside or massage brushes hang in the stable. Animal welfare is especially determined by the entrepreneur himself, but with organic farming you know for sure.

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