Q: Are your goats a special breed?
A: Yes. They are French Alpines – descendants of 26 animals brought to this country early in the 20th century.
Q: Do they have individual names?
A: Yes. Each of our goats has her own name and her own distinct personality. For the purpose of computer records she has also been assigned a number.
Q: How long do goats live?
A: Pet goats may live to be 12-15 years old. Their milk, however, drops off after the fifth year.
Q: What are those little things hanging down from under their necks?
A: They are called “Wattles” and, as with the beards, some Does have them; others don’t.
Q: How does the milking device work?
A: It duplicates the natural sucking action of a newborn kid and pumps the milk directly into our creamery where we make it into cheese and yogurt drink (Yo-Goat).
Q: Are the goats as eager to be milked as they seem?
A: Due to being creatures of habit, yes. It is a pleasant sensation and relieves them of the pressure that builds up between milking.
Q: How many are milked?
A: There are over 1000 goats on the Coach Farm, but we are usually milking no more than 500 – 600 at any given time.
Q: How often are they milked?
A: Twice a day; four o’clock in the morning and three o’clock in the afternoon.
Q: How long does the milking take?
A: On average, each goat milks out in less than 4 minutes. Doing 28 at a time, we are able to milk about 125 Does an hour.
Q: How much milk do they give?
A: An average of 9 lbs. per day. (8.6 pounds = 1 gallon)
Q: How does that compare to a cow?
A: A good Holstein cow can produce up to 80 – 100 lbs. of milk per day.
Q: How much milk does it take to make 1 pound of cheese?
A: About 10 pounds.
Q: How often do they have kids?
A: Once a year.
Q: How many bucks do you have?
A: About 23. We also do a lot of artificial insemination.
Q: What is the gestation period?
A: 5 months.
Q: Do they ever have twins?
A: Yes. And triplets too. (We have also had several quads.)
Q: How big are the kids at birth?
A: On average 6 – 8 lbs…. just like humans.
Q: What do you feed the goats?
A: Mostly good alfalfa hay that we grow here on the farm. They also get daily supplements of grain (soybeans, oats, corn) and lots of clean water to drink. Our goats do not eat tin cans.
Q: Why are goats different from other farm animals?
A: Due to their intelligent, curious personalities, they are aware of everything going on around them.
Q: Where do the goats live?
A: Our goats live in different barns on the farm depending on their age. They are kept nice and warm in the winter and cool in the summer. They have constant access inside or out. Rock piles are available at their leisure to jump on and frolic about.
Q: Are your goats treated with antibiotics?
A: Yes, we do treat our goats with antibiotics when ill. By law, the milk produced by goats treated with antibiotics must be discarded.
Q: Do you offer mixed milk products (i.e. goat and cow milk blend)?
A: No we don’t. All of our products are produced with 100% Grade A goat’s milk.
Q: Do you use growth hormones?
A: There is no such growth hormone available for goats, and if there was one available we would not use it anyway.
Q: Are your products pasteurized?
A: All of our products are pasteurized. By law, all fresh cheeses and milk products aged less than 60 days must be pasteurized.
Q: Is your milk homogenized?
A: We do not homogenize our milk. That is why you will see a layer of cream that has settled at the top of our milk. Homogenization breaks down the fat content in the milk.
Q: What type of rennet do you use?
A: We use microbial rennet. It is free of animal enzymes; therefore vegetarians can consume it.
Q: What is the shelf life of your cheese?
A: Our fresh cheese lasts for about 10-14 days and our fresh reduced fat is 7-10 days. Our aged cheese will last 3 weeks or more if stored properly. We suggest wrapping it in wax paper and changing the wrapping frequently to avoid contamination.
Q: How should I store your cheese?
A: Our cheeses should be kept refrigerated at all times. The optimum temperature is 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
Q: Can your cheese be frozen?
A: We do not advise freezing any of our cheeses. If necessary, our fresh cheese can be frozen, but it will be dryer when thawed and will crumble easily.
Q: How should your cheese be served?
A: We recommend leaving our cheeses at room temperature for at least thirty minutes prior to being served.
Q: Do you offer reduced fat cheeses?
A: Yes we do. Our creamery has a separator, which aids in producing our award winning Triple Cream as well as our fresh reduced fat cheeses. The fat separator removes the cream used in the Triple Cream cheeses. Leftover skim milk (with 30 % less fat) is used for the fresh cheese production. Check our online store to see which products are available.
Q: What is Yo-Goat?
A: Yo-Goat is a cultured, drinkable yogurt. It is not as thick as yogurt, but has the same benefits of a traditional thicker style yogurt.
Q: What types of cultures are in your Yo-Goat?
A: Our Yo-Goat contains Streptococcus Thermophilous, Lactobacillus Bulgaricus and Lactobacillus Acidophilus.
Q: Do you offer a traditional yogurt?
A: At this time we do not.
Q: Do you make goat butter?
A: We allocate the butterfat from our milk for our triple cream.
Q: Are your goat milk products available year round?
A: Yes, all of our products are available.
Q: Where can I find your cheese, milk and YO-Goat?
A: Our cheeses and Yo-Goat are available nationwide. Our milk is available locally where we make our own truck deliveries (Hudson Valley area, New York City, and New Jersey). If you cannot find our products in a store near you please visit our online store at www.coachfarmstore.com.
Q: How come your milk isn’t available on your web-site?
A: We do not ship our milk via UPS or Fed Ex due to the fragility of the containers and leakage that can occur.
Q: Are your products organic?
A: Our products are not organic. We do not use any preservatives in our products. We strive to farm as sustainable and naturally as possible.
Q: Are your products Kosher?
A: No they are not.
Q: What is the story behind the names of your cheeses?
A: Instead of following the French tradition of naming our cheeses after small villages we followed an American philosophy of actually naming them for their shape. Cones, sticks, and pyramids are what they look like and what they are called.
Q: Who founded Coach Farm?
A: Miles and Lillian Cahn started Coach Farm in 1985. Previously they owned Coach Leather before moving upstate to enjoy a more “peaceful” life. Miles has often been quoted that they are being held hostages by 1000 goats at the farm.
Q: Where is your farm located?
A: We are located on 105 Mill Hill Road in the town of Gallatinville, NY (mailing address is Pine Plains).
Q: Do you offer tours of your farm?
A: Currently we do not have scheduled tours set-up. Visitors are welcome to visit the farm, see the goats, and watch them being milked at 3:00 in the afternoon (early risers can come at 4am).
Q: Do any famous chefs use your cheese?
A: Yes! Quite a few actually. Mario Batali being one of our top customers (who is also married to founders Miles and Lillian Cahn’s daughter, Susi). Along with Mario Batali, our cheese is available at restaurants of Jean-George Vongerichten, Daniel Boulud, Peter X. Kelly, Anne Burrell, Dean Maxx, and Laurent Tourondel. Pierre Chambain, the former White House Chef, now uses our cheese at the St. Louis Club. Most recently our cheeses have even been sighted on the Food Networks’ Iron Chef, used by Bobby Flay.
Q: What other television programs has your cheese been featured on?
A: Katie Couric visited us a few years ago when she was part of the Today show. Katie milked the goats and helped in making the cheese. Her morning was a bit different that day! Martha Stewart has also featured our farm and cheesemaking process. Miles & Lillian Cahn appeared as guests in another episode of her show. Food Network star Sara Moulton also visited the farm with her camera crew.
Q: Do you have a catalog you can mail me?
A: Brochures are available to wholesale customers only. Consumers looking to purchase directly may visit our online store for information on all of our products.
Q: I am doing a research product that involves Coach Farm. Where can I find more information?
A: Miles Cahn wrote “The Perils and Pleasures of Domesticating Goat Cheese”, which has a wealth of information from the former owner’s perspective. This book is available on Amazon.com
Q: Do you offer scheduled tours of the farm?
A: Unfortunately, we do not offer scheduled tours of the farm. However, if you would like to stop by the check things out, please contact us prior to your arrival at (518) 398-5325.
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