As a farmer-led community, our nearly 1,500 dairy farm families are at the heart of what we do. Spanning from Pennsylvania to Florida, each farm is unique. Some have been passed down through several generations while others are just breaking ground. Some remain founded in hard-earned traditions while others welcome the opportunities of what’s to come. Some specialize in delivering by the glass while others share the goodness inside a cone. Large or small, young or old, there is one thing each of our farm-families has in common – a shared passion for providing safe and wholesome dairy goodness that hasn’t wavered for nearly 100 years.
We are proud to introduce you to our farmers and celebrate their passions and stories with you.
Nine generations strong, the Dallam family owns and operates Broom’s Bloom Dairy in Harford County, Maryland. The farm, which dates back to the early 1700s, is named after a colonial land grant for the area and the original land owner, John Broom.
David and Kate took over the farm in 1997, milking 65 cows and making old-fashioned ice cream, farmstead cheeses and pork sausage. Over the years, the family business has grown to become an iconic ice cream shop in the greater Baltimore and Washington, D.C. metro areas.
In addition to their delicious dips, the Dallam family is known for their array of locally produced farm products including meats, cheeses, bottled milk and breads as well as their very own assortment of fresh, all natural soups, stews and chowders.
The family-run business has been recognized nationally for their handmade, old-fashioned ice cream, earning top awards from the Washington/Baltimore Zagat Restaurant Guide as well as being ranked fifth in the nation according to Tripadvisor’s Top 10 Ice Cream Shops in the U.S.
The family also offers farm tours, seasonal happenings and live music events throughout the year.
For more information on Broom’s Bloom Dairy and their products, please visit www.bbdairy.com.
Jason and Mary Crum, of Frederick, Maryland, have been active members of the cooperative for several years.
Since purchasing their own farm in the spring of 2014, the couple has become more involved in the program to help make better on-farm decisions that will positively affect their and their children’s future.
Together, Jason and Mary help to operate Venture and Luck Farm in Walkersville, Maryland. A fifth generation dairyman, Jason has been part of the operation since birth. Currently, he manages feeding programs and works closely with the herd’s nutritionist to adjust rations as necessary. Jason also assists with the farm’s breeding program, crop management and nutrient management compliance.
Since meeting Jason in 2001, Mary has been active in the family’s farm. She is responsible for raising the calves and helping with feedings and fieldwork. Off the farm, Mary is a Vocational Services Coordinator at the Scott Key Center in Frederick, Maryland and will soon be completing her Bachelors of Science in Business from Mount St. Mary’s University.
The couple has recently purchased their own farm two miles from the home farm where they hope to expand their operation with their two children, Tristan and Liliana.
Jason and Mary are also active in Maryland & Virginia’s Young Cooperators Program and are serving as the 2015-2016 Outstanding YC Couple.
In 1979 member John Mast, his wife Mahala and their six children moved to Crossville, Tennessee. They added three more children to the fold, and in 1985 they purchased a dairy that has grown to employ three families.
Son Tim has been involved on the farm since he was 11 years old and in 2014, John and Tim welcomed son-in-law Marc Miller to the operation. Marc brought a strong background in dairy production and a keen interest in bottling milk to the family business. The real hurdle they faced was how to make the business work. “It was either go all in, or add cows,” said Tim.
“We didn’t see an 80-cow dairy supporting three families. Instead of adding more cows and producing more milk, we decided to see if we could get more for the milk that we were already producing,” says Tim. “I always thought our area deserved to have a product like our milk that is produced locally,” says 75-year-old John. “More and more people want to know where their food comes from.”
The Masts set up a processing facility for their farm’s label, Sunrise Dairy, just a half mile down the road from their farm. Formerly an old country store and deli, the facility has been transformed into a farm store where the family sells whole, 2-percent, fat-free and flavored milk in addition to their own butter and meats. Sunrise Dairy now processes about 1,000 gallons each week, plus they run 150 gallons of ice cream mix when needed.
The family milks their 85 Holstein cows twice-a-day in a double-six herringbone parlor. Quality has always been a priority for the family, and they have earned nearly 18 years of annual quality awards from the cooperative.
With the bottling operation fully established, the family is looking to new opportunities including offering product in plastic pints and gallons. “We want to grow, but more importantly, we want to give back to the community and provide a local product that’s fresh from the farm and as close to natural as possible,” says Tim.
For more information about Sunrise Dairy and where to buy their products, please call 931-277-3777.
Born and raised on a dairy farm, William Steppe has been milking cows since he was 12 years old.
“I liked it then, I like it now, and I hope I always will like it,” says William.
Today, William operates Maple Leaf Dairy Farm with his three sons, daughter and wife. Together, the family raises 56 cows on more than 300 acres of sprawling northern Pennsylvania farmland.
For the Steppes, running a dairy farm is more than family business – it’s a way of life. Keeping cows happy and healthy is and always has been the primary goal for William and his family. “The cows know me and I know them,” says William affectionately. “They miss me when I’m not here.”
The Steppe family has been recognized many times by Maryland & Virginia as outstanding members for their quality of animal care, and in turn, their quality of milk.
“Milk quality is very important for us – our number one goal is to keep animals healthy and make a good quality product for our consumers,” says William.