by Andrew Coppolino
The growth in popularity of Eby Manor Golden Guernsey milk has been a marvel to observe in Waterloo Region. Delivered in retro glass bottles, this unique milk is now found in many restaurants, cafes and food stores locally and as far away as the GTA.
Why is it unique? There are a few reasons, the first of which is that it is delicious and creamy to drink. As well, while we are used to drinking milk from Holstein cows, Eby Manor raises a herd of milking Guernsey cows, just a few minutes from the St. Jacobs Farmers’ Market. Owner Jim Eby’s father switched to Guernsey cows in the 1960s, and the farm has been raising and milking them ever since.
Add to that the fact that Eby Manor dairy farm represents a loosening over the last 50 years of the tightly controlled supply management system which sees all milk go into a central pool of Holstein milk where it is processed and homogenized. Eby’s milk is not processed that way thanks to a Dairy Farmers of Ontario program called “Project Farmgate.” Instead, the Guernsey milk is pasteurized and specially bottled at the popular Hewitt’s Dairy in Hagersville, just over an hour away.
Another unique aspect is that Eby Manor’s whole milk is 4.8 percent butter fat – compared to supermarket milk at 3.25 percent – and is not homogenized, so you get that beautiful, rich plug of fat forming at the top of the bottle. Just like in the old days.
Eby’s Guernsey cows are fed non-GMO feed and silage from their farm, and the milk has more protein, Beta-Carotene and vitamins, calcium and Omega-3and is the least processed that it can be. An added benefit, Eby notes, is that because Guernsey milk has Beta Casein A2 protein, it may be more easily digested by people with milk intolerances.
The Eby Manor dairy farm is a good example of the historically strong farming community that is the back bone of Waterloo Region coupled with the entrepreneurial spirit that motivates us. That, in turn, motivates restaurants, cafés and stores who want to give their customers a unique food experience.