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Ireland’s Leading Independent Food & Hospitality Guide
The Little Milk Company is an innovative cooperative demonstrating that environmentally responsible small producers can thrive by working together – and they are the winners of the Irish Food Writers’ Guild 2017 Environmental Award.
In 2008, ten organic dairy farmers from Munster and Leinster came together as a discussion group chaired by Pat Mulrooney to consider the sustainability of their family farms.
Recognising that economic sustainability lay in adding value to their primary product, the group experimented in 2011 with a raw milk cheddar produced for them by Knockanore Irish Farmhouse Cheese.
Encouraged by positive feedback, each of the farmers invested in the company the following year. In 2013, they brought Conor Mulhall, of Cappagh in West Waterford, on board as a full-time CEO of The Little Milk Company.
Today they produce eight different organic cheeses, including three styles of cheddar, a brie, a blue and Brewer’s Gold, a washed-rind cheese that uses Dungarvan Brewing Company’s Copper Coast beer.
Their cheeses are exported to 16 countries and use 70% of all the milk produced on their ten family farms. This is projected to rise to 100% by 2018 and the company is currently recruiting local farmers to convert to organic production in order to meet their future demand.
By collaborating with local cheese-makers The Little Milk Company farmers are supporting small Irish craft food producers whilst securing a future for themselves and their families on their own farms.