Umpqua Dairy has started to process and distribute organic milk from its Roseburg production facility for the first time since it opened in 1931.
Steve Feldkamp, chief operating officer at Umpqua Dairy, said he’s excited to provide organic milk to customers.
“We finally got to the point where we had enough demand from our customers that we had the volume that we could buy the milk and package it, so we’re excited about that,” Feldkamp said. “We’re able to provide those customers that prefer to purchase organic milk with a quality product.”
Umpqua Dairy has distributed organic milk in the past, but this is the first time it’s being 100 percent produced in Douglas County from 100 percent Oregon cows. The organic milk comes from a farm in Grants Pass.
The company was recently recognized as the best overall dairy company out of many across the United States and Latin America in the Quality Chekd Dairy Association.
Umpqua Dairy’s new Roseburg-produced organic milk is now available at dozens of grocery stores including Sherm’s Thunderbird Market in Roseburg, Grocery Outlet in Winston and Ray’s Food Place in Green. Feldkamp said the company plans to expand to other stores if there is enough demand.
Feldkamp said the business went through a rigorous certification process, including proving the organic milk is kept separate from conventional milk.
“Organic milk from dairy farmers in quite a bit more expensive than conventional milk, so we don’t want to buy more than we can sell. It’s a bit of a trick to make sure we can balance the needs across the system,” Feldkamp said.
Ormond Feldkamp and Herb Sullivan founded the company 87 years ago. Now, Ormond Feldkamp’s grandsons Doug and Steve Feldkamp continue to run the business as the largest independent dairy in Southern Oregon, manufacturing and packaging ice cream, milk, sour cream, whipping cream, cottage cheese and fruit drinks.