It’s the time of year to celebrate ice cream, milk and cottage cheese with June as National Dairy Month and July as Ice Cream Month.
Umpqua Dairy plans to take its concession cart to special events throughout the season, including the Summer Arts Festival, Music on the Half Shell, the upcoming Sutherlin Blackberry Festival, seven county fairs and a number of parades across the state.
Umpqua Dairy also celebrates its 85th anniversary this year. Ormond Feldkamp and Herb Sullivan started the company in 1931. Two generations later, Ormond Feldkamp’s grandsons Doug and Steve Feldkamp carry on the family business today.
“For 85 years, it’s still been an independent company and family-owned, and located right here in Roseburg, Oregon, at the same location where we started,” said President Doug Feldkamp.
The Feldkamp brothers worked in the plant throughout their time at Roseburg High School and Oregon State University and took over ownership after their father, Bob Feldkamp, passed away in 1988.
“I grew up in it and have been around it all my life,” Doug Feldkamp said.
Steve Feldkamp, chief operating officer, said the company focuses on providing quality dairy products and customer service. “That’s what has made us successful over the years,” he said.
He said his favorite product is the low-fat cottage cheese, and he’s not alone. Umpqua Dairy was honored for having the best cottage cheese in the world at the International Dairy Convention in 2013.
“I’m a big fan of all our dairy products,” Doug Feldkamp added. His favorite ice cream flavor is chocolate peanut butter. The dairy also offers collegiate cartons for the University of Oregon, Oregon State, Washington State and University of Washington. As OSU graduates, the Feldkamps are fans of the Beaver Tracks ice cream.
The brothers are proud of the recognition their company has received over the years. In April, Umpqua Dairy won the 2016 Best Production Facility Awards for both Cultured Products and Ice Cream Products at the National Quality Chekd Leadership Conference for the second year in a row.
Earlier that month, Umpqua Dairy cottage cheese was named the Best in the Northwest at the Oregon Dairy Industries Conference in Salem, where the company also won the Sweepstakes Award in the Cultured Division for the sixth consecutive year and the runner-up Sweepstakes Award in the Ice Cream Division.
From the production plant on Sykes Street in Roseburg, the company ships its products to distribution centers across the state, and its ice cream can be found in nine Western states.
Umpqua Dairy products are offered in grocery stores throughout Oregon. Locally, ice cream lovers can get their favorite flavors by-the-scoop at Sherm’s Thunderbird, Gay 90’s Ice Cream Parlor & Delicatessen, Seven Feathers Casino, Totem Market and Southgate Market & Deli.
“Our objective is to continue to grow into markets and promote our brand,” Doug Feldkamp said. “There’s a lot of opportunity really close to us.”
Though large corporations bring tough competition, Steve Feldkamp said offering the best quality products sets Umpqua Dairy apart in the market place.
In a rural area where the job market faces hardships, Doug Feldkamp said he’s proud of how the locally-based business continues to grow as an independent dairy and provide family-wage jobs.
The brothers hope to continue offering a stable job environment for their employees in the years to come. “We’re always looking to reinvest in our company,” Doug Feldkamp said.
A number of employees have been working at Umpqua Dairy for 40-plus years, including Karol Orth with 52 years in the company.
“We try to be the employer of choice in these communities,” Steve Feldkamp said, adding that the quality workforce allows the company to grow. ”We take pride in what they do.”