What does your farm name mean to you? How did you choose this name?
Our name means heritage, we are a fifth generation farm and having our family name representing our cheese proves our passion for a quality product.
Where is your farm located? How many miles do you travel to reach Common Ground? We are located in Fithian, Illinois about 22 miles East of Common Ground.
What do you produce/grow/raise? What is your signature product?
We produce European style artisan cheese. Our signature products are Jake's Wheel, Kickapoo, Vermilion River Blue, and Gouda.
For how long have you been producing artisan cheese?
This is our fifth year producing artisan cheese
Where do you get the ingredients for your products?
Our main ingredient is milk and all of our milk comes from our own Holstein cows and is free of hormones and antibiotics.
Do you use organic or fair trade (natural) farming practices?
We are not Certified Organic, we are Certified Humane in the raising, handling, and feeding of our cattle. We have yearly inspections via Certified Humane and are proud to be a Certified Humane producer. We believe our customers appreciate this and it's one of the reasons our cheese tastes so good. We love our cows and they love us.
What do you enjoy most about farming?
Working with such beautiful gentle animals, taking a hands on approach and producing a wonderful artisan cheese that brings smiles to all who taste it.
What do you find most challenging about farming?
Farming is hard work with long hours, we milk twice a day; 5 am and 5 pm, and then also work long hours making our cheese.
What is your philosophy/perspective on locally made goods/ farming and agriculture? Locally made goods are made with more care and on a smaller scale so there is more of a personal touch in the goods that are grown or produced. Supporting local farms is a great contribution to the local economy.
Is there anything else you'd like Common Ground's customers to know about your farm? We welcome visitors to come and tour our farm and creamery and taste our cheese. We are happy and thankful to have our cheese available to the customers of Common Ground.