Celebrating 5 years
Josh and Ellen Biemond take a moment to rest during their busy day at Upper Canada Creamery located near Iroquois in South Dundas. The antique cheese barrel and ice cream maker are part of the dairy heritage of many parts of this country, including Dundas County. Thompson Goddard photo
SOUTH DUNDAS – Upper Canada Creamery (UCC) located in South Dundas celebrated their 5th anniversary on Aug. 15 of this year.
Owned and operated by Ellen and Josh Biemond, UCC produces a variety of dairy products including milk, yogurt, ice cream and cheese from the milk produced by their 45 dairy cows.
Information obtained from the website of Upper Canada Creamery explains that its story began in 1981 when the Biemond family immigrated to Canada and purchased a dairy farm in South Dundas.
The evolution of New Care Farms (NCF) includes a transition to certified organic dairy and cash crops, the building of an open concept barn following a fire, and after the purchase of NCF by brothers Rudi and Josh Biemond and the installation of a milk parlour. The plans for providing a source of local dairy products continued, with the establishment of UCC in 2015.
In 2020 there are several products produced at the creamery including yogurt, four flavours of cheese and curds, fluid milk, frozen yogurt and ice cream, but during a recent interview, Ellen explained when the creamery opened there was one size and one flavour of yogurt offered for sale. The dairy products are created onsite at UCC from milk produced by their herd of cows. She continued on how they keep the operation small, so they can shrink their food imprint, keep it local and provide quality of product over quantity.
Several times in the interview, both Josh and Ellen stressed the importance of the support provided by the local community to the success of their businesses. There was a deep sense of thankfulness for this support and they mentioned this includes those who visit the onsite storefront, the stores who provide UCC products for sale and the people who purchase them.
They also mentioned the collaborative effort with other local food producers in the creation of food products and working or mentoring the next generation of farmers. Josh mentioned how young farmers have toured the site and commented the availability of support if they choose to develop a business such as Upper Canada Creamery.
He continued that the public are also able to tour the site enabling them to become more knowledgeable about the food they can purchase. Josh and Ellen both agreed it is important for people to know where and how their food is produced and what ingredients are contained in their food as well as knowing the producers themselves if possible.
The couple both spoke about the importance of dairy in the history of our area, mentioning visitors to UCC have often shared with Josh and Ellen the story of cheese factories and dairies located in the area, which they both enjoyed hearing. Josh mentioned that today, there are very few businesses such as UCC which process milk from their farm and process it into a finished dairy product.
When asked about the future, the couple commented that there are new products being contemplated and to keep an eye on their social media sites for announcements. As the interview concluded, Ellen and Josh both agreed their greatest business accomplishment was bringing their dream of producing their dairy products onsite with the assistance of a supportive family and community, an invaluable contribution to their success.
For more information please visit their Facebook page, website at www.uppercanadacreamery.com or their business located at 11575 Waddell Road located near Iroquois in South Dundas.