Cherry Grove Farm is a diversified, sustainable dairy farm and creamery situated on 480 acres of woodland, wetland and pasture in Lawrenceville, New Jersey, making award-winning farmstead cheeses from our grass-fed raw cows’ milk. Our cheeses are made in small batches and aged on the farm, with attention paid to the craft of artisanal cheesemaking. Each piece reflects the distinct flavors, aromas and seasonal variations of our unique terroir. Developed from classic European recipes, our cheeses are American originals.
As part of our sustainable ecosystem, we also raise a small number of heritage breed pigs, lambs, chickens and beef cattle, producing grass- and whey-fed meats, raised without hormones, antibiotics or steroids.
By raising a variety of animals we use our resources more efficiently, creating a farm that is sustainable not only in production, but also as a business. With this ethos comes a commitment to the long term health of our land. We believe in building from the soil up, working every day to ensure that our organically certified pastures are nourished and thriving. If we take care of the land, the land will sustain us.
Our commitment as a farm is to be transparent, to educate and engage with our community, reconnecting our neighbors to the land and one of the sources of their food.
THE DAIRY HERD
Our dairy cows are a mixed group of Jersey, Milking Short Horn, Friesian, Red Ayreshire and Dutch Belted cows. Once blended together, the diversity of fat and protein in these milks allow us to explore a range of cheese styles, a distinctly American approach to cheese making.
We practice intensive rotational grazing, moving the animals daily to keep the pasture healthy; giving the land time to rest and rejuvenate to ensure the best possible forage for each season. The cows’ milk reflects the changing grasses and pasture plants season by season, and you can taste these seasonal shifts in our cheese varietals.
A SUSTAINABLE WHEY
As a sustainable farm, we must use our resources efficiently, reusing and recycling as much as possible. Cheesemaking produces a large amount of whey. We feed that protein-rich liquid to our Berkshire and Duroc-cross pigs, who spend their days foraging in the woods and pastures. When in excess, whey can also be spread on the fields, adding minerals back into the soil.
With more pasture than our 120-head dairy herd needs, we graze a herd of about 180 Katahdin sheep, and a small number of beef cattle to help crop the fields. Katadhin are a heritage breed hair sheep known for hardiness in both cold and humidity, perfect for a Northeast climate.
We keep a flock of mixed heritage breed laying hens who live in mobile coops, pecking and scratching through the grass, spreading organic matter as they follow the sheep from pasture to pasture. Our mix of Americauna, Wyandotte, Australorp, and Delaware hens give us a rainbow of colors in each carton of pasture-raised eggs.
In 2015, we started raising a small number of heritage turkeys. These Bourbon Red and Royal Palms live in the hedgerows and fields with the cows and pigs. They are available by pre-order for Thanksgiving and the December holidays.
With more than enough land to go around, we lease farmland to two organic vegetable CSAs. Both Cherry Grove Organic Farm and Z Food Farm share our vision of healthy food grown locally and sustainably. For us, seeing small scale agriculture flourish once again is rewarding. Making the effort to preserve farmland and see it help support a new generation of farmers is fulfilling.
Cherry Grove Farm has been in the Hamill family since 1902. In keeping with the family’s historic commitment to conservation, the farm is managed in cooperation with mother nature. Much of the land has been left as wetland and woodland, offering natural habitat for native plants, songbirds, wild turkey, deer, fox and other native creatures.
VISIT THE FARM
We understand the importance of knowing exactly where our food comes from, so Cherry Grove Farm is open to the public. Our cheese is made on the farm from our own cows’ milk. The meats produced on the farm are processed without nitrates or preservatives so you can expect a clean, quality product. Neighbors and customers are encouraged to visit year-round, to enjoy the pastoral setting, participate in tours and classes, and develop a relationship with the source of their food.
At our on-site Farm Store, we sell our own farmstead cheeses, whey-fed pork, grass-fed lamb, grass-fed beef and pasture-raised chickens for eggs, as well as a plethora of local- and artisan-made goods. Come to the farm throughout the year for classes, educational farm tours, and farm-to-table events.