If you were reincarnated as a cow, you could scarcely do better than to be one of the Jerseys or Holsteins of Arethusa Farm. At the Litchfield dairy farm, the cows are treated to daily tail washing, conditioning and brushing, frequent bedding changes, wide-open pastures, and all-around pristine conditions. These high standards of care have created exquisitely clean, rich milk.
Arethusa has a rich history in Connecticut. The farm was first established by the Webster family in 1868, but it fell into disuse. In 1999, George Malkemus and Tony Yurgaitis took a leap of faith and bought the historic Arethusa Farm with the goal of saving open farmland.
Their first foray into dairying was simple enough, just five cows roaming the hilly pastures. But one thing led to another and soon the old barns were renovated and new ones added.
Arethusa began bottling milk exclusively from their herd in 2009—and along the way, added yogurt, cheese, butter, and ice cream. The combined farm and dairy operation employs about 40 people in Bantam and Litchfield (and more at the offshoot restaurant and cafe)….and over 350 happy cows.
To preserve the natural goodness and rich taste, pasteurization takes place in smaller batches and at lower temperatures than most commercial dairies., to preserve as much of the raw milk flavor as possible while killing harmful bacteria.
“Arethusa Farm is everything you could hope for from a local business,” says Hanna Pimenta, assistant manager of Elm City Market. “High-quality, award-winning, humane and humble. From cheese to ice cream and everything in between, nothing can beat the combination of rich, creamy flavors plus the comfort of knowing exactly what you’re getting and where it’s coming from.”
Elm City Market is a locally-owned grocery committed to offering natural and organic items that contribute to sustainable economic development in our region. We encourage our customers to join us on this mission. Shopping local means creating more jobs, investing in the development of our community, and enjoying better quality products.
You can order Arethusa Farm’s milk, butter, yogurt, sour cream, and many flavors of ice cream from Elm City Market’s online delivery service, or find them in the dairy, freezer and cheese departments of the store.
photo courtesy Arethusa Farm