Sustainable Milk Direct From the Farm
When we opened our shop, it was really important to us to use milk which was locally sourced, sustainably delivered and most importantly, would provide us with the quality that we required in our milk based drinks. Vine Farm Dairy fitted this bill perfectly! Charlotte from Vine Farm Dairy, tells us a little more about the farm:
Vine Farm Dairy is a local family run dairy farm, which has proudly been supplying Leicester Coffee House with milk and cream for over a year. When Gail contacted us about supplying them, we jumped at the chance! It’s been great to work with another local business who pride themselves on being sustainable and eco-friendly, whilst producing quality products, and sourcing local suppliers as much as possible.
Vine Farm Dairy was set up in the summer of 2018 as a farm diversification project. It allowed us to sell a small proportion of our milk directly to the public for the first time, through our onsite milk vending machine. As a family, we’d been enjoying the milk at home for years, and thought it would be a great opportunity to share this with the public. My partner James’ family have farmed in Great Dalby (just 11 miles away from Leicester Coffee House) for over a century. In 1950, Grandma and Grandad Chandler added a couple of dairy cows into the fold, and 70 years on, the dairy herd is now 370 strong. The large majority of our milk goes to Long Clawson Dairy to produce award-winning cheese, including the world-famous Stilton (which can only be produced in Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire). Alongside our supply to Long Clawson Dairy and the onsite farm vending machine, we also deliver milk to a small handful of local businesses throughout Leicestershire and Rutland. Since Vine Farm Dairy began, we have encouraged our customers to buy glass bottles, and refill as much as possible. We have been overwhelmed with the response, and collectively saved tens upon tens of thousands of plastic bottles from being thrown away. We even deliver larger quantities of milk to our customers in reusable milk churns, which aside from being extremely nostalgic is also very practical! We deliver our milk to Leicester Coffee House in reusable glass bottles. We believe that milk doesn’t need to be in single use plastic, and the more that we can reuse and refill the more sustainable the process is.
The cows are at the very heart of the farm, and we are incredibly proud of their milk. We have three breeds of cows in the herd, consisting of the ‘traditional’ black and white Holstein breed, Montbéliarde cows (a French breed, long associated with cheesemaking due to their high protein milk), and Jersey cows (their milk is high in butterfat, and very creamy). We believe that the blend of milk from these cows is pretty perfect. Perfect for drinking, perfect for cheesemaking and perfect for making incredibly delicious coffee.