Family Farmstead is a unique distinction for which very few farms qualify.
First, and not surprisingly, a family farmstead must be owned and operated by a family. The Schochs have operated our dairy for 70 years through 3 generations. Today, John Schoch is owner, manager, and milker, and his sons Ty, Seth, and Beau take care of bottling, feeding, cleaning, cheese making, cheese aging, pasture maintenance, irrigation, and the myriad other tasks which running a dairy demands. You can count on one hand the number of California dairies where the same person is both owner and milker. Schoch Dairy is one of them. John rises at 5am each day to do the morning milking.
The term farmstead is, in fact, even more rigid than artisan. An artisan cheese maker simply makes his cheese by hand. Not only is our cheese artisan, but in order to qualify as a farmstead we must also make our cheese from milk produced on the same property. Indeed, we both bottle our milk and make our cheese while our cows are still being milked in the barn nextdoor.
Finally, all of our dairy products are made with raw, unpasteurized, non-homogenized milk. In order to sell raw milk, the state of California requires that our milk meet the same standards for quality and cleanliness as post-pasteurized milk. We follow strict sanitation procedures, and are extremely attentive to the health of our animals. Schoch Dairy is 1 of only 3 dairies in California licensed to sell raw milk.
Our Family Farmstead is truly a one-of-a-kind operation.