Our History -
The Klein Family
Tour the Farm - Meet the Animals
Klein Farms has been a dairy farm since Roy Klein came here in the l930's. Over the years, herd size increased to 150 head, with 70 milking cows in the barn. The farm has sold milk to several different dairies over the years, the latest being Parmalat. Because farm prices have basically stayed the same for the past 20 years, finances on the farm became difficult. Fixed expenses such as fuel, fertilizer, and insurance cost increased over the years, but the monies received by the Dairy (because of government control over price) did not.
On November 1, 2002, a sick cow rolled on Layne's leg, breaking it and dislocating his foot. He was not able to work for several months catching up on missed sleep and Martha Stewart on TV. Meanwhile Beth, Jake, and Rachel pulled together and ran the farm. A decision was then made to sell most of the milking cows because of several factors. Layne's injury was a major reason for selling at that time, but also low milk prices paid to us was hurting our finances; and our son, Jacob, had plans that included college in the fall.
So on January 17, 2003, most of the milking cows were sold to a farmer west of Allentown; and life changed for all. The Kleins still milked everyday because they kept several "pets", but life slowed down enough for them to look at where they've been, and where they wanted to go. As several of the younger heifers had calves and joined the other milkers in the barn, they were faced with using up some of this excess milk. They fed all that they could to the youngest animals, but still had some left over. (They weren't producing enough to ship to the Dairy yet). Layne and Beth both thought of making something more with this excess milk, cheese. With the help of some internet sites, they acquired some kits to make some soft and hard cheeses in the kitchen from their fresh raw milk. The cheese that was made was wonderful, and the whole idea developed from there. A “henhouse” was renovated the first half of 2004, and then equipped with processing equipment. A Raw Milk Permit and Milk Processing License was obtained from the state of PA, allowing the Klein's to open their own retail store on the farm property in October of 2004. The Klein's sell their own natural, Raw Milk, fresh Brown Eggs, and Beef from their own steers. Cheese production began in November, 2004, making the Klein's the only cow's milk farmstead cheese operation in a 5 county region.