VALLEY FORD CHEESE COMPANY NOW CERTIFIED HUMANE®
(Herndon, VA) July 19, 2010 – Humane Farm Animal Care (HFAC) announces today that Valley Ford Cheese Company of Valley Ford, California has been awarded the Certified Humane® label for its cheese.
Valley Ford Cheese Company is located at Mountain View Jerseys, a 640 acre dairy farm in Western Sonoma County, California. Owned by Paul Bianchi and his children Karen Bianchi-Moreda and Steve Bianchi, the farm has been operated by Bianchi/Grossi families, since 1918.
Valley Ford cheeses originate from a closed herd of over 400 Jersey cows. The closed herd concept means no outside breeding stock is ever introduced to the existing animals. Using this type of process has been shown to cut down on disease and generally produces a healthier and stronger animal.
The farm is well known for its Estero Gold Italian farmstead cheese and a new cheese Highway 1 which recently won a medal at the California State Fair. The Estero Gold is an aged artisan cheese that is made in the tradition of the Swiss-Italian canton of Ticino where the Bianchi/Grossi great grandmothers were from. Highway 1 is made in a fontina style.
“We have a lot of pride in our product and our farm, it shows the minute you enter the gates,” said owner Karen Bianchi-Moreda. “We took the certification process and inspection very seriously, and believe me the dairy and our cheese making processes were looked over with a fine tooth comb by the HFAC inspectors. We had nothing to lose and absolutely everything to gain by becoming Certified Humane®,” she added.
HFAC is the leading non-profit certification organization improving the lives of farm animals in food production. The Certified Humane® designation assures consumers that meat, poultry, egg, or dairy products they purchase have been produced according to HFAC’s precise standards for humane farm animal treatment. Animals must receive a nutritious diet without antibiotics or hormones and must be raised with shelter, resting areas and space sufficient to support natural behavior. Since the HFAC program was unveiled in May 2003, more than 60 companies, representing hundreds of farms and millions of farm animals, have been certified.
Endorsed by more than 36 humane organizations, the Certified Humane Raised and Handled® program is nationally recognized as the Gold Standard for certifying animal welfare from birth through slaughter. HFAC’s Animal Care Standards were developed by a veritable “Who¹s Who” of national and international animal scientists and farm-animal welfare experts. Producer compliance with the HFAC standards is verified through annual on-site visits by HFAC’s third-party inspectors.
Valley Ford Cheese Company products can be found in markets in Sonoma, Napa and Marin Counties, California as well as several other states and the Washington, DC area. To find out where to purchase these products visit our website www.certifiedhumane.org. For more information on the farm: www.valleyfordcheeseco.com.