Farmstead cheese, less commonly known as farmhouse cheese, is produced from the milk collected on the same farm where the cheese is produced. Unlike artisan cheese, which may also include milk purchased and transported from off-farm sources, farmstead cheese makers only use milk from animals they raise. According to the American Cheese Society, "milk used in the production of farmstead cheeses may not be obtained from any outside source". As a result, the cheeses produced often have unique flavors owing to the farm's local terroir. Most farmstead cheese is produced from cow, goat or sheep milk, although some farmstead cheeses are produced from water buffalo milk (mainly Buffalo mozzarella).
Farmstead cheeses are most often made on family farms in small batches and is often sold at local farmers' markets. While Europe has long had a very strong tradition of farmstead cheese-making, it is only in the last decades of the 20th century that farmstead cheese-making began to return to prominence in North America. In the United States, the top states for farmstead cheesemaking include Vermont, California, and Wisconsin, although farmstead cheese is growing rapidly in other states, like Georgia, as well. North Carolina is another state that has recently gained accolades for its farmstead cheeses, even creating the WNC Cheese Trail.
In Europe these cheeses are more commonly known as farmhouse cheeses and there are many different varieties available, especially from Ireland and Germany. The small scale of production allows for unique sales points such as cheese from cows raised on non-genetically modified organisms (GMOs)-containing feed.
- List of cheeses
- Ardrahan Farmhouse Cheese
- Corleggy Cheese
- Durrus Farmhouse Cheese
- Gubbeen Farmhouse Cheese
- Giannaclis Caldwell (14 May 2010), Farmstead Creamery Advisor: The Complete Guide to Building and Running a Small, Farm-Based Cheese Business, Chelsea Green Publishing, pp. 6–7, ISBN 978-1-60358-283-4
- American Cheese Society. "Cheese Glossary".
- Burros, Marian (October 4, 2006), "The Earth Is the Finishing Touch", The New York Times
- Anderson, Sam (October 11, 2012), "Go Ahead, Milk My Day", The New York Times
- Watson, Molly. "What is Farmstead Cheese". Retrieved 3 October 2013.
- Barbara Reed; Leslie James Butler; Ellen L. Rilla (1 January 2011), Farmstead and Artisan Cheeses: A Guide to Building a Business, UCANR Publications, p. 2, ISBN 978-1-60107-692-2
- Paul Kindstedt (2012), Cheese and Culture: A History of Cheese and Its Place in Western Civilization, Chelsea Green Publishing, p. 210, ISBN 978-1-60358-412-8
- Paul Kindstedt (2005), American Farmstead Cheese: The Complete Guide to Making and Selling Artisan Cheeses, Chelsea Green Publishing, pp. 29–32, ISBN 978-1-931498-77-7
- Muhlke, Christine (March 30, 2008), "Push Comes to Chèvre", The New York Times
- Hall, Christopher (March 29, 2013), "5 Stops on a California Cheese Trail", The New York Times
- Kaplan, Brad. "Farmstead Cheese Takes Route in Georgia". Creative Loafing Atlanta.
- "WNC Cheese Trail". WNC Cheese Trail.