Carolina Farmhouse Dairy makes small batches of organic cream-top yogurt and kefir in Bahama, NC. The farmstead yogurt is made from the unhomogenized milk of a small herd of Jersey cows. Cindy Hamrick, her son Brandon, and a team of farmers and yogurt makers run the family enterprise.
The family began experimenting with yogurt in 2009. They wanted to have cows and therefore wanted to produce something with milk. They bought local milk and worked on recipes for yogurt, selling it on a small scale. In 2016, they arranged to sell it at Weaver Street Market. They brought home their eight new cows and began milking twice a day and making yogurt with their own milk. In the creamery, yogurt cups are filled by hand. They rest in an incubator before heading to the store, three days after the cow was milked.
The farm chose Jersey cows, which do well on pasture and produce rich, buttery milk. The cows were purchased from one herd and were selected because of their efficiency of turning forage into milk and because of their sweet personalities. As an Animal Welfare Approved herd, the cows receive most of their nutrition from rotational grazing, and are supplemented with locally sourced certified organic feed from Reedy Fork Farm in Elon, NC.
Carolina Farmhouse Dairy is committed to our local food scene. The farm is run organically as they await eligibility for certification. They hope to buy frozen organic berries from Vollmer Farm for year-round use in the yogurt, as well as other local ingredients. All the farm’s workers want to own farms someday, so the Hamricks make payments into escrow accounts for each of them, building savings that will someday enable them to realize their dreams.
Watch a video of our visit below.