[31 May/Farmers Weekly]

Northland sharemilkers Guy and Jaye Bakewell’s ingenuity is allowing them to help pay off their dairy cows faster whilst capitalising on consumers’ growing demand for raw, untreated milk. Four days a week in Auckland’s inner-city suburbs, a truck delivers raw milk in glass bottles to residents. For Mr and Mrs Bakewell, their raw milk delivery business is as much about earning extra income as it is about helping educate consumers. Their farm is small by industry standards, with only 150 cows and on top of this, the couple is committed to sustainable farming. This situation meant the Bakewells had to investigate ways to generate extra income, which initially started with shifting twice a day milking down to once a day to reduce the need for staff. In August last year, a vending machine dispensing raw milk opened on the farm and the couple now sells an average of 200 litres a day. There are 26 registered raw milk suppliers around the country of over 10,000 dairy farms. About 120 cows are milked once-a-day and their milk is sent to Fonterra. The remaining 30 cows are run in a separate mob and their milk is used to supply the vending machine, which customers can use 24/7.