Getting the public involved

The Ethical Dairy up in Scotland is running a series of cheese making courses for the public, with the customers being able to bring home cheese that day, or get the pressed cheese shortly after. They also offer farm tours for vegans, with the next one being held 21 May, and a morning milking experience, which will run several dates in the upcoming summer. All of this is to help open the farming experience to people who wouldn’t normally be seen at a farm. This is where your milk and cheese comes from, and this is how we treat the animals.

The good news is that it gets people onto farms and has them look at where their food comes from. Part of the issue we often have is that there is a serious disconnect from the agricultural sector, and the general public. Like the military, as fewer people go into it, fewer people understand what goes on beyond the farm gates, or why.

On the one hand, perhaps it is better that not everyone has to be running the farm (or being in the army). On the other hand, as a key part of the rural community, the more people we get to see how valuable the farmer is – as a land and animal custodian, as a rural employer and anchor for the larger community.

Plus, spending a day making cheese is a delightful thing. It is good that consumers want to know about their food, and good that farms such as the Ethical dairy are helping to inform them. For further information visit: www.theethicaldairy.co.uk

Speaking of cheese, it is National Cheese Day here in the UK, 20 January. Hope everyone gets a piece! And keep an eye out in your own country for when dairy-related products are being celebrated.

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