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Farmer News

Nov 07, 2013

Producer Spotlight - Mello Dairy

Meet the Mellos

Producer Spotlight - Mello Dairy

As the senior of Wallaby Yogurt Company's two Mello family producers, Vicki and Albert Mello are well-accustomed to twice-daily milkings and the hard work that goes into running a dairy on a year-round basis. The hardest part, Vicki notes, is the fact that the couple can rarely vacation together, as they are both intricately involved in the daily operation of the ranch.

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When they can get a break, both Vicki and Albert love the outdoors - swimming, hunting, and fishing. The two share a passion for 70's music, but differ in their preferences when it comes to meals. Vicki likes pizza and cheesecake while Albert enjoys steak and any type of berry pie. It is no surprise that this difference in taste extends into their choice of Wallaby Yogurts, with Vicki selecting Greek Nonfat with Raspberry and Albert choosing the Strawberry or Blueberry Australian-style blended cups.

The Mellos' first priority is always their family, with holiday meals or any kind of family get-togethers at the top of their lists of favorite activities. Beyond their children and grandchildren, Vicki and Albert take great pride in owning their own ranch and in the organic farming practices they have established. Uniting these passions together, they have passed this tradition on to their son, Mike, who now owns his own dairy. Read more about him in a subsequent blog, as another Wallaby Yogurt Company producer.

Oct 31, 2013

Producer Spotlight - Moreda Valley Dairy

Meet the Moredas

Producer Spotlight - Moreda Valley Dairy

Dairy farming was brand new to Deborah Moreda when she first met her husband, Donny. Donny Moreda, on the other hand, was highly familiar with dairy farming, having grown up helping on the ranch founded by his great-grandfather nearly a century ago. Today, Don's family still owns and operates that ranch, while Don and Deborah have started their own.

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When we caught up with, Deborah and Donny Moreda admitted they were both about ready for a nap. After having kept up with the daily rigors of maintaining an organic dairy for nearly seven years, feeling a little sleep deprived is the norm for these two. Deborah relies on Wallaby Australian-Style Raspberry Yogurt to power her through the day, often using it in smoothies or topping it with cottage cheese for a protein-packed snack. When they are not milking the herd or tending to the ranch, the Moredas enjoy staying active, with Deborah favoring dancing and Donny enjoying a softball game here and there.

It's no wonder she is a dairy farmer, as Deborah's other favorite treats include dairy as well – ice cream and pizza. She also loves preparing big holiday meals for the family. In fact, her family members, particularly her three kids, are her most prized possessions. Most recently, one of the three children has opened a ranch of his own. Stay tuned for more on Travis Moreda and his dairy farm in an upcoming blog.

Oct 24, 2013

Producer Spotlight - Beretta Dairy

Meet the Berettas

Producer Spotlight - Beretta Dairy

The Beretta Family has practiced responsible farming long before Wallaby Yogurt Company sought their milk. Today, Doug Beretta leads this pasture-based fourth-generation dairy farm with the help of his wife, Sharon, and their kids: Jennifer, Susan, and Ryan. Their eldest daughter, Lisa, doesn't help with the day to day operation, but her 2 year old son, Brayden, loves helping with feeding and washing. Farming is truly a way of life for the entire family. The kids have participated in 4-H and FFA (Future Farmers of America) for years, and now take ownership of specific tasks on a daily basis.

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When they are not feeding, milking, and maintaining the ranch, the family often gathers to watch TV shows like Malibu Country and The Voice. It's no surprise that a love of country music, particularly songs from Jason Aldean and Luke Bryan, is also shared amongst the siblings and their parents. Differences arise, though, when it comes to the family members' favorite Wallaby yogurts. Doug enjoys both the blended and the Greek varieties in Strawberry, while his kids each have a specific pick, ranging from blended Maple to Key Lime to Greek Nonfat Raspberry. All are very proud, however, of the fact that their cows' have contributed to each tasty spoonful of Wallaby, no matter what flavor!

Other tasty treats enjoyed by the family include Sharon's blackberry pie, often accompanied by big scoops of Vanilla ice cream – something Doug claims he cannot live without. It's no surprise that a big necessity on the farm is coffee, as a source of energy for all those early mornings and long days! Fortunately, like most of our producers, Doug and his family love their work, and plan to continue to provide certified organic milk to Wallaby Yogurt Company for years to come.

Oct 17, 2013

Producer Spotlight - Morrison Brothers Dairy

Meet the Morrison Brothers

Producer Spotlight - Morrison Brothers Dairy

How many dairy farmers are also SCUBA divers? Well, we know at least one! Larry Morrison has been diving for about 10 years, mostly off the coast of Northern California, which enables him to stay close to his work. As one half of the duo leading Morrison Brothers Dairy, Larry is still very involved in the day-to-day operations of the farm. Between daily feedings, breeding, caring for calves, and managing the tedious tasks that come with running the business, it's hard to believe Larry has time for life away from the dairy.

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Larry has been fortunate enough to find himself with the opportunity to travel to New Zealand a few times. He thinks the landscape is some of the most majestic he has ever witnessed and the diving opportunities are endless. If he ever finds the time, he'd love to get back.

Beyond his adventures underwater, he also enjoys hiking, hunting, team roping, and riding one of his nine horses. Every now and then, he finds the time to relax indoors, usually to watch a football game on TV. Indoors or out, Larry likes Wallaby Yogurt straight out of the cup. His favorite flavor is Greek Nonfat with Raspberries. He likes to eat it with a little fruit in each bite.

Oct 10, 2013

Producer Spotlight - Bianchi Dairy

Meet the Bianchi Family

Producer Spotlight - Bianchi Dairy

Susan Bianchi could not help but profess her love for dairy life, "The dirt, the dust, the flies - I love it all!" She was raised on a dairy and has enjoyed leading the same lifestyle since she and her husband, George, founded Bianchi Dairy years ago. While her son, Bill, has taken over much of the daily operation, the couple is still very involved with its happenings. On a recent visit, Susan gave us a tour of the grounds, introducing us to the 'ladies' of the house. Meanwhile, George was helping with the cows, who were almost finished with their milking. Admittedly, Susan is happy to no longer be involved in the milking duties, especially the 1 am shift. However, she hasn't given up ownership completely - she's always sure to inspect the property on her daily hikes, and can often be found giving the calves extra love and attention.

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Outside of her life on the farm, Susan enjoys golfing and her time with family. Around her house, any holiday is a great excuse for everyone to gather. Family gatherings can easily grow upwards of 40 people, but Susan loves the company.

Susan's favorite flavor of Wallaby Yogurt is hard to narrow down. She has become a fan of the new Greek Nonfat with Raspberry, but often returns to almost any of the Lowfat Australian-style blended flavors, particularly favoring anything citrus.

Oct 03, 2013

Producer Spotlight - Travis Moreda Dairy

Meet Travis Moreda

Producer Spotlight - Travis Moreda Dairy

Meet Travis Moreda. Travis is the youngest and newest addition to the Wallaby Yogurt Company producer family, although he isn't new to the dairy business. Growing up on his parents' dairy farm gave him plenty of insight into the demands and rewards of organic farming. Thus far, he thrives on managing his own dairy, telling us that his work, along with his family and friends, are the three things he could not live without. Wallaby's creamy Australian-Style Blueberry yogurt might be number 4 on the list.

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When Travis isn't working, he is rarely kicking back. His leisure activities include hunting, fishing, golfing, and abalone diving. While dirt biking was once his all-time favorite, Travis's maturity into a proud business owner has encouraged him to limit these dangerous excursions. He fears for how an injury could drastically change his life and limit his ability to care for his most prized possession – his dairy. He looks forward to many more years as a dairy farmer and a proud Wallaby producer.

Sep 24, 2013

Producer Spotlight - Valley View Dairy

Meet The Camozzi Family

Producer Spotlight - Valley View Dairy

After raising three girls, Eugene and Chris Camozzi are not intimidated by the task of managing more than 400 cattle on 1600 acres.  At their Valley View Dairy in Sonoma County, they acknowledge that the dairy lifestyle is tough and not for everyone.  It was in their blood, though, as both of their grandfathers emigrated from Italy, starting farms in Northern California at the turn of the century. The tradition has continued with Eugene and Chris, who enlisted their three daughters’ help on the ranch throughout their childhoods.

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These days, the girls are grown and have finished or are just finishing their college educations, leaving Eugene to manage the dairy.  Fortunately, working the ranch is a pleasure for him, as he embraces both its challenges and its rewards.  Together with the help of his five employees, Eugene keeps his operation running smoothly and looking pristine at all times..

After a long day on the farm, Eugene can usually be found indulging in chocolate, such as our Wallaby Down Under Dark Chocolate yogurt.  Other favorites include a good coffee and a delicious risotto.  Most of all, Eugene enjoys spending time with his wife Chris, and making the most of time together with his family.

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Sep 17, 2013

Producer Spotlight - Mello Farms

Meet the Mellos

Producer Spotlight - Mello Farms

Mike Mello grew up on his parents' dairy farm, and dreamed of replicating the same organic farming practices on his own farm. In 2009, that dream became reality and he now owns and operates a 210-acre farm near his parents' original Mello Dairy. Mike appreciates having his parents nearby, as they are always willing to help him out on his farm, or provide business advice when needed. It seems they are more than happy to trade favors for time with Hannah, his first child, who is just over a year old.

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Life on the dairy, particularly with twice-daily milkings, keeps Mike busy. Most of his free time is spent with his wife, Trisha, and daughter, Hannah. Free time will soon become even less known with the quickly approaching arrival of their second daughter in November 2013. His TV viewing is usually limited to Disney shows, but he sneaks in some History channel every now and then, and even gets out hunting from time to time. Mike and Trisha also love taking quick trips to Tahoe or Clearlake when they get the chance, but, like his parents, he values time spent with family, and truly enjoys his work.

When it comes to Wallaby Yogurt, Mike shares his mother Vicki's taste for Greek varieties, with his recent favorite being the Nonfat Mixed Berry. He also enjoys Mexican food and has a sweet tooth - especially for ice cream. Mike enjoys his work on the farm and is proud to be following in his parents' footsteps, continuing their practice of responsible organic farming and producing milk for Wallaby Yogurt Company.

Sep 10, 2013

What makes Wallaby Yogurt so special?

Our milk producers are the key to our products

What makes Wallaby Yogurt so special?

While some might think it is our unique creaminess and mild flavor, to us it goes far beyond that. From the top-down, our employees make Wallaby Yogurt Company special. Our dedication to fair and ethical practices in how we do our work and how we treat one another has instilled a sense of pride in each Wallaby employee. This helps make us distinctive, but the special nature of our company and products begins even earlier in the process, with the main ingredient for every Wallaby Organic product: milk.

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Our milk is not just any ordinary milk; it is organic milk sourced locally, from eight family-owned farms. These eight farms have happy California cows that get to enjoy the mild weather of Marin and Sonoma County, less than 50 miles from our facility in American Canyon, CA. Spending the majority of their time out in the pasture, and supplemented with organic grains as needed, these cows get a comfortable life of exercise and relaxation, while getting the care and attention they need to grow and thrive as milk producers.

This lifestyle and the high quality milk produced would not be possible without the hard-working people behind our eight milk-supplying dairies. These men and women work long hours, often enduring nature's elements to ensure proper care of their cows and the milk they produce. With herds of 100-400 cows, milking twice a day is just the start of their daily chores. This series will give you a peek into all that goes into keeping a dairy farm running, as we introduce you to the people behind the scenes, and the source of our most important ingredient.