Located in Irasburg, Creek Valley Farm is in its third year of business. The farm is owned and operated by Lorinda Campbell, Charleen Miles and Mel Tyree. The farm’s small herd of Jersey cows are rotationally grazed. Three varieties of cheese are produced by the family in their creamery. In May 2022, Creek Valley Farm became a Farm Partner with Green Mountain Farm Direct.
Creek Valley Farm came to be because of Lorinda’s love of cows, says her sister Charleen. “Lorinda will tell you she speaks two languages – English and Cow. Lorinda has always loved cows. She’s worked in the dairy industry since she was a teenager at many different farms, always as a hired hand. But she always wanted her own cows.”
Only more recently was Lorinda able to fulfill her dream of owning her own cows. She started out at home, with just one cow named Flag (that she still has to this day). She began milking by hand and breeding cows. As her herd grew, the question came to be what to do with all the milk? That is when Charleen and her husband, Mel, became more involved. Charleen says, “We started by getting a book and making cheese in our kitchen. Eventually, Lorinda got too many cows and that’s when I helped her find a small farm. My husband designed a milk plant. It took a little over a year to buy the farm, design the plant, and get it all built. Then we made our first cheese in the plant in February of 2020.”
Creek Valley’s herd of Jersey cows are mostly daughters of the same matriarch. The family takes pride in not using any chemicals on their pastures and practicing rotational grazing. The farm produces raw milk cheeses, with their youngest cheeses aged four-months and the oldest aged eighteen months. Lorinda is the herds-person and the cheese-maker; Charleen is the assistant cheese-maker and the marketer; and Mel offers other support they may need and provides maintenance of the plant.
Charleen shares, “The partnership with Green Mountain Farm Direct is helping us find markets. That is what we have been struggling with, is being able to sell as much as we make. A smaller distributor like Green Mountain Farm Direct that is more easy to contact and get help from is ideal for someone starting out.”
Learn more about Creek Valley’s Gouda, Caerphilly and Farmstand cheese at: creekvalleyfarmvt.com/wholesale
Creek Valley products are available at the following retailers via Farm Direct:
Craftsbury General Store
The Roots Farm Market (Middlesex)
Arbor Farm Market (South Hero)
And at these seasonal farm stands:
Chandler Pond Farm (Wheelock)
Trillium Hill Farm (Hinesburg)
Head Over Fields (Charlotte)