Don’t deny us great tasting milk!

When I began talking about the concept of free range milk back in 2011, I was looking for a way to help people understand the role dairy farmers play in defining the quality of the milk we buy and to halt the loss of traditional grazing herds from the British countryside. I could see that widespread… Read more »

Seasonality of Free Range Milk

I was recently asked on Instagram what is free range milk? There’s no recognised standards, so how can you call it free range? In lots of ways that’s true. Free Range Dairy Network is trailblazing in that we are working in collaboration with others from farmers to food agencies to bring what is an… Read more »

Seeds Are Treasure

Global Justice Now have organised events across the UK with farmers from Bangladesh to talk about Monsanto. You might have heard about CETA and TTIP, both trade agreements which could see profits put before people but you might not have heard about Monsanto and according to the presentation their ‘seed piracy’. The talk with food… Read more »

A Harvest Festival for Dairy

It’s that time of year when we can feel the world around us changing, as suddenly summer seems to have slipped away. Shortening daylight, colder mornings, mist and dew, accompanied by a rich hue of orange and gold colours splashed across the once green landscape, announce the arrival of autumn. Still today, in mid October,… Read more »

Working together

Free Range Dairy Network is a member of the Food Research Collaboration and I was pleased to attend the workshop looking at collaboration between civil society and academics recently. The workshop explored the barriers and challenges to collaborating and in my previous role as a campaigner I have plenty of experience of when collaboration works… Read more »

Putting nature back into milk

The recently released State of Nature Report with contributions from more than 50 conservation groups, claims ‘policy-driven’ intensification of farming is a significant driver of nature loss in the UK. The report assessed 8,000 species and found that one in ten are threatened with extinction. In a report by BBC Environmental Correspondent, Claire Marshall, lead author of… Read more »

Last of the Summer Milk

This week we ran our last Free Range Dairy event of the summer at Bar house farm in Gloucestershire. Jenni and Jerry along with their cows have been the stars of the events. Jenni making free range cakes and everything in between for lunches that people couldn’t resist after a walk around the farm,… Read more »

Finding free range map

We have outgrown our Finding Free Range Dairy map. We have added so many new locations to the map making it geographically less accurate. So, we have now replaced it with, not one but two new Google maps – Finding free range and Case studies. Google maps are so much more versatile and easier to use,… Read more »

The answer under our feet

Free Range Dairy Network is entering the film competition Picture This about what communities across the world are doing to help protect the environment. I was excited to make the film as although we talk about cow, consumers and farmers as our core messages, we believe we can make a positive environmental contribution to the… Read more »

Meet the Free Range Cows in Yorkshire

The sun shone and the cows looked happy and content in the fields, if a little curious as we got the barn ready and fired up the tea urn. At 11am people started arriving from all over Yorkshire and Lancashire and soon we had quite a big crowd trying free range milk from Stephenson’s DairyRead more »

Tasting the difference at Countryfile Live

The first Countryfile Live event took place at Blenheim Palace from the 4th to the 7th August this year and joined free range milk suppliers, Cotteswold Dairy, on their stand for a couple of days. In recent years, some have been critical of BBC Countryfile for its lack of coverage of British food and farming,… Read more »

The Grass & Grazing Possibilities

It is quite likely that, in the wake of the work we have done to promote traditional, seasonally grazed dairy farms and the wonderful milk they produce, others will begin to label milk as ‘free range’, reassuring consumers that cows have “access to grazing” for much of the year. However, in many instances, this may… Read more »

Free Range Dairy joins Jamie’s Food Revolutionaries

TV chef and good food ambassador, Jamie Oliver, has established an ambitious new initiative to bring about a global revolution in food and we have been invited to join in and tell the world about the work of the Free Range Dairy Network CIC and its aims. You can read the full details on Jamie’s… Read more »

Cow Appreciation Day

When we think of our countryside we always think of cows in fields. Cows have been part and parcel of our lives since we were children but they go back much further than that. They occupy a unique role in our history and have been domesticated since at least the early Neolithic age. Early Neolithic populations who domesticated cattle as well… Read more »

Happy Birthday to Us!

July 1st 2016 marks the second birthday of the Free Range Dairy Network. Our ‘birth certificate’ below from Companies House shows the date we created our Community Interest Company (CIC) and embarked on our stated social mission “to promote the value of pasture-based milk production on British dairy farms for the benefit of cows, consumers and… Read more »

One more dairy farmer friend lost to the crisis

By Jenni Hobbs, The Hobbs family at Barhouse Farm. I am writing this blog sat beside my husband Jerry on a stack of bales watching and bidding at a  friend’s dispersal sale.   A dispersal sale is the total sale of a whole herd of cows and this particular one today belongs to one of, if… Read more »

Free Range Dairy Farm Event

It was a gorgeous day and we had a great turn out. Neil, with help from farm dog Sonny, was there to sign people in and give them a name badge. We had about fifty people attend on the day, all catered for by Jenni, the farmer’s wife who put on a fantastic buffet with… Read more »

Grazing – commitment or token gesture?

It is unsurprising, in the wake of the work we have done to raise awareness that not all milk is the same, others are now looking to establish labels providing an assurance that dairy cows are grazed in fields. Waitrose launched a new TV advert in April, shortly after I appeared on BBC Countryfile talking… Read more »

One year on

One year on for Stephenson’s Dairy and Free Range Dairy … I was at Cup North, part of Spin Manchester, this weekend helping Chris of Stephenson’s Dairy with his milk stand. Chris was also providing all the Free Range milk for the coffee roasters J Atkinson & Co. Ltd, Casa Expresso and Ancoats Coffee… Read more »

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