A Green Goat
Cranberry Ridge Farm is a small ruminant dairy consisting of dairy goats and sheep trying to be dairy sheep! We were the first commercial goat dairy in Alaska to bring a product to market. We have relocated to Upstate NY to continue providing high quality raw goat milk to small cheese makers in the Mohawk Valley, Adirondack Region and beyond. We continue to produce delicious Farmstead Raw Milk Cheese to the buying public of New York, Alaska and beyond.
In 2009 after moving 5000 miles and a multitude of adventures, we purchased an old NY farmstead. Renovation began to turn an old bank barn into living quarters for goats and sheep. The old milk room became a small cheese making room certified by NY State Ag and Markets. The manure handling room was cleaned up and renovated into a milk room where our pure white goat milk and very rich sheep milk is cooled and stored and all of our milking equipment is cleaned and stored.
The next project is to make the weedy, rocky pasture into lush green for the animals to eat during the summer months. There are lots of expensive ways to accomplish this but the most effective to get the animals out there eating what is available and distributing their valuable manure over the land. We started with a few step in electro net fences. We have seen a wonderful improvement in weed removal and density of native grass and clovers.
In order to utilize our animals to the maximum we need to rotationally graze them through the property. Keeping animals moving is healthier for the animals as it naturally reduces infestation of parasites, provides fresh feed for them and works wonders on old pastures by keeping weeds down and fertilizing. A rest period as the animals move on allows the native grasses and clovers to multiply. And the milk that the animals produce makes an incredible cheese.
To accomplish this simple idea we need to keep the animals fenced and moving. Electro Net fences do this very efficiently. These step in fences are set up and taken down very quickly allowing for convenient and quick rotational grazing and a safe way for goats and sheep to browse and graze. Couple this with a solar fence charger, it allows us to use this system without relying on the grid and all the fossil fuels and nuclear energy that goes into making electricity.
By moving our animals through our farm we accomplish three things. We recover the poor pasture land into fertile high producing grazing land. The animals benefit from decreased parasite load, lots of fresh air and sunshine and continual fresh feed allowing them to produce incredible milk. And thirdly the cheese consumers.................YOU............benefit from the final product, Farmstead Raw Milk Sheep and Goat Cheese created in a sustainable environmentally friendly way.
The funds from this project will go directly to purchase:
A solar fence charger
Enough Electro Nets to rotationally graze our 45 milk goats and 18 sheep. Plus all the kids and lambs.
A small amount will go to pay for the awards and shipping costs.
Any extra funds will go to purchasing more fence to improve yet more pasture.
The Green Goat is about making the land better and thus impacting the animals that graze it and the consumer that eats the cheese.
This is the first of several short projects to make our farm more sustainable and eventually create a product that comes directly from our farm without input from outside sources (the electric company, the feed mill, etc).
By supporting The Green Goat you are supporting a small family farm.