Family Creamery Bellwether Farms Shows Just How Much “Whole is Better”
Traditionally crafted, high-quality, delicious sheep’s milk and cow’s milk yogurts and cheeses stand out nationwide
Petaluma, Calif. – Nestled in the beautiful rolling hills of the Sonoma County coast, Bellwether Farms lovingly crafts dairy products including yogurts and cheeses using full-fat sheep’s milk and cow’s milk and traditional, artisanal techniques. Whether you’re savoring a midday snack, recovering post-workout, or preparing a favorite recipe, Bellwether Farms’ versatile award-winning dairy essentials are delicious and packed with nutrition.
Founded in 1986 and family-owned and operated, Bellwether Farms first received rave reviews for its sheep’s milk cheese and yogurt from farmers’ markets and chefs in the San Francisco Bay area. Since sheep’s milk is extremely high in nutrients and in many cases more readily digestible to those with lactose intolerance, Bellwether Farms was able to carve a niche for the brand and make sheep’s milk cheeses and yogurts more mainstream and accessible. Coming up on its 35th anniversary, Bellwether Farms now makes America’s number one sheep’s milk yogurt, has loyal customers across the country and has secured distribution nationwide. But what still sets Bellwether Farms apart in the dairy case after all these years is a refreshingly simple approach that’s been a commitment for the creamery since its inception.
Bellwether Farms’ devotion to simplicity and wholesome tradition is no more apparent than in its Sheep Milk Yogurt and Organic Cow Milk Yogurt. Most yogurt these days is created by first cobbling together a variety of low-fat milk and cream sources — and then adding colors, fillers, flavors and sugars to make up the difference lost in taste and texture. In contrast, Bellwether Farms makes yogurt in small batches from whole milk straight from healthy, happy sheep or cows. Thanks to this premium sourcing and also to using time-honored techniques perfected over thousands of years, the resulting yogurt is lusciously smooth, delicious, and nutrient-dense.
The motto “whole is better” applies not only to Bellwether Farms’ popular yogurt line but to all of its products including its exquisite, hand-dipped Whole Milk Basket Ricotta, made from pure Jersey cow milk. Cultured first and then slowly heated in small kettles until curds form, there’s nothing else quite like it. Another standout is Bellwether Farms’ Crème Fraiche, French cultured cream made from pure, local heavy cream. It’s a favorite staple of professional chefs and home cooks alike and is widely renowned for its complex richness.
“With ‘whole is better,’ everyone wins,” says Liam Callahan, owner of Bellwether Farms. “The sheep and cows live full, healthy lives; farmers are rewarded for taking care of these healthy animals; we get to follow our passion and craft exceptional products we’re proud of — and folks enjoy food that is deeply nutritious and remarkably flavorful.”
And this holistic emphasis extends beyond farming and food production to giving back to the community. In 2016, Bellwether Farms established the nonprofit Bellwether Farms Foundation, pledging one percent of sales to organizations providing hunger relief or food-related education. In 2020 in response to the COVID-19 crisis, Bellwether Farms launched Project Spilled Milk and raised $50,000 to purchase excess milk from dairy farmers who had fewer open restaurants or schools to buy their dairy. Bellwether Farms dedicated one production shift each week to create yogurt from this milk and delivered 25,000 16 oz containers of yogurt to food banks in Northern California, which have been experiencing unprecedented demand this year.