MN Agriculture: Carey and Terri Prigge, Linden Acres and Dairy Goats
Day 13 of my “30 Days of MN Agriculture” is Carey and Terri Prigge, Terri and her family milk dairy goats. Carey and Terri have four children, Sam, Emily, Annie & Sawyer and live in New Richland, MN. New Richland is located south of Minneapolis. Not only do they milk dairy goats, but they also breed Irish Wolfhounds, sell free-range chickens and eggs.
Social Media Sites:
Facebook: Linden Acres
Website: Linden Acres
Tell me a little about your farm and/or business?
“We run a goat dairy called Linden Acres and also breed Irish Wolfhounds using the same name for our kennel.”
How long have you farmed or been in business?
“We have been milking commercially only since 2014, but have had dairy goats since 2008, sheep before that. We also raise free-range chickens and sell eggs at the local meat market.”
Tell me a little about what you grown/raise/produce or service provided.
“Our dairy goats get milked twice a day for milk that gets made into cheese. Wethers get sold for meat and doe kids get sold as replacements to other dairies.”
Where do you sell or provide services to? Who is your end consumer?
“Our milk is sold to Mt. Sterling Creamery in Wisconsin where it made into cheese sold under the Mt. Sterling label.”
What makes your farm/business unique or special? What are you proud of?
“I am proud of the fact that even though Carey works a full time off the farm job (veterinarian) and I grew up in the Twin Cities metro area, somehow, with the help of our 4 children we are so far making this goat dairy work!”
Why do you grow/raise/produce? What went into your decision to do what you do?
“We were breeding irish wolfhounds and our first female did not produce enough milk for her puppies. One day Carey brought home 2 dairy doe kids from our dairy goat farmer neighbor. The kids fell in love with these ‘pseudo dogs’ and showed them in 4H the next summer. We bred those 2 does, sold our sheep and switched the 4H venture over to goats. It got to the point where we had a lot of goats and needed to a) sell a whole lot of them or b) start milking commercially. The kids decided they couldn’t part with any of the does so we decided to start milking commercially. Our dairy goat farming neighbors, Rob & Sherry Panuska, mentored us, got us set up with the creamery they sell their goat milk to and sold us enough doe kids that we would have enough milking does to do this whole thing commercially. We built a lean-to onto our 1920-ish barn which included a milking parlor and milk house. All the construction delays and inspections were finally complete in time for us to sell our first bulk tank full of milk in August of 2014. I like to call this whole venture our ‘4H project gone wild’.”
What do you love most about farming/business?
“Definitely getting to live in the country and spend time with family. Also instilling a work ethic in our children.”
What makes Minnesota the place to farm/grow/raise/produce/service?
“Goat milk is in very high demand right now and creameries are expanding (and even stealing each others customers) in the upper Midwest. By living in southern Minnesota only 2 miles from a rather large goat dairy, we are in the prime position to always have a market for our goat milk.”
What is your favorite Minnesota location?
“Although our state is so incredibly varied topographically-wise, you just can’t beat the north shore and driving along Highway 61 north of Duluth. We used to live in Wabasha and you also are hard pressed to find a prettier drive on Highway 61 in the fall from Red Wing south to Winona. Of course, at the end of the day, I enjoy the most being able to step outside the milking parlor and watch the most gorgeous prairie sunsets.”
Read the other people featured in my “30 Days of MN Ag. ”
There are others that are also participating in the 30 Days of Blogging Challenge. Feel free to check these out: