Archive for September, 2013

RAW – Best Fresh

Thursday, September 5th, 2013
Radically Awesomely Wonderful goat milk

Radically Awesomely Wonderful goat milk

I recently discovered with surprise that a local grocer was stocking fresh raw goats milk in half gallon glass bottles from Ferns’ Edge Dairy, located south of Eugene at the foot of Mt. Zion in Lowell, Oregon. I’d recently developed an interest in raw goat milk via some of my daily readings through alternative health and information sites and forums. This is a product which is generally hard to come by, but there it was. So I decided to buy a bottle and give it a try. I drank the whole delicious bottle in one evening. I wanted more.

And so I looked up this goat dairy on the internet. What I found were links to many glowing articles about Ferns’ Edge Dairy and the award-winning artisan cheeses and milk produced on this organically minded small craft diary farm, referenced on many different food and farm promotional web sites. For instance, the following excerpt can be found at http://www.experienceeugene.com/ferns-edge-goat-dairy

      “Ferns’ Edge Goat Dairy is a farmstead artisan cheese facility “staffed” by the long-established and award-winning Mt Zion Dairy Goat herd.
      Our farm and dairy are nestled at the base of Mt. Zion in the Cascade foothills overlooking beautiful Dexter Lake. We are committed to creating nourishing dairy products that are handmade in small batches, uniquely crafted and locally produced — ensuring quality, freshness and a wonderful taste.
      Fern’s Edge uses all organic practices and certified feeds as well as biodynamic methods in managing our animals and in working the land as we strive to foster sustainability and enhance our daily rhythm with the Earth.
      Our cheese offerings are an array of fresh-flavored soft cheeses seasoned with our own farm-raised herbs or off-farm organic ingredients and wild-crafted edibles. We are also working on some raw milk aged cheeses as well as some bloomy and mold-ripened varieties that will be available soon.”

But any link to the domain name fernsedgediary.com delivered a surprising home page. Here’s the screen shot!

Todays screenshot of Ferns' Edge Goat Dairy web site

Todays screenshot of Ferns’ Edge Goat Dairy web site

It’s in Kanji and it sure doesn’t look like the subject is about a goat dairy.

Well, my first thought was, this site had been hacked! This little goat dairy had it’s web presence stolen!

Now, I am a big fan of fresh, locally grown or raised natural foods, and I am blessed to live in the Pacific Northwest where there is a bounty of natural, nutritious, non-laboratory foods available to us if we know where to look. Fish! Nuts! Fruit trees! Berries! Mints and herbs and wild onions! Mushrooms! Honey! Cider and wine! Some of the world’s best hops! Lush vegetation for munching on by farm animals – producing milk and cheese, eggs, wool, meat, hide.

And I know the folks who fish, grow crops and and raise farm animals as a business struggle with so much more than just their daily chores. Government and business regulations are complicated and time consuming, as are bookkeeping, advertising programs and the physical logistics of getting to market. And everyone is supposed to have a web site AND stay up on Social Networking!

So what was with this malfunction, that clicking on a link for fernsedgedairy.com would deliver a homepage full of kanji? Did Shari forget to renew her domain name registration?

I had learned that Wednesday was the day Shari drove to the Portland area from Lowell and distributed her fresh goat milk and cheese products to select merchants. Market of Choice in West Linn only gets 9 – 12 half gallon bottles and generally sells out, so every week there after buying my first bottle, I have made a late Wednesday afternoon shopping errand to be one of the first customers to purchase more fresh raw goat’s milk from Shari’s latest delivery. Thank you Shari!

So yesterday, being Wednesday, I was thrilled that my shopping timing coincided with Shari’s delivery. I was very happy to actually meet this hardworking dairy farmer and cheese artisan, to thank her personally for her passion and tell her how delicious I thought her products were. And she confirmed my suspicions! When I brought it up, she said her dairy farm web site had been hacked!

As soon as I got home, I did a little online background research on the web site’s mysterious conversion. Starting with the Wayback Machine, the internet’s digital archiver of WWW homepages since 1996 – this is a screenshot dated Oct. 14, 2012.

Wayback Machine Oct. 14, 2012 archived screenshot of Ferns' Edge Goat Dairy web site

Wayback Machine Oct. 14, 2012 archived screenshot of Ferns’ Edge Goat Dairy web site

Which is the last of 23 over time, as it is interesting to note, the first screen shot by Wayback Machine was captured May 2007, and proves the web presence of Ferns’ Edge Dairy since at least March of 2007. See for yourself, or the history of any site. Go to:

web.archive.org

My next background check at statscrop.com reveals another story as shown with the following screen shots:

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What!? Only 4 months old!? The server is in Japan!? How did this domain get transferred without permission from the original owner?

Ferns’ Edge Dairy sells the only certified raw milk in the state of Oregon, and is the only goat dairy with a grade A raw milk license.

Shari Reyna’s farmstead goat cheeses include the signature 4-pound raw-milk Mt. Zion, aged about 1 year. kezi.com Eugene reported on Feb. 6, 2013 that Ferns’ Edge cheese won a silver award at the World Good Foods Awards in the UK.

Following are URLs referencing related and historical information online.

http://www.marketofchoice.com/cheese/local-cheese

http://www.kingestate.com/blog/blog/vendor-profile-ferns-edge-goat-dairy-and-la-mariposa-cheese/

http://bitteredunits.blogspot.com/2013/06/cheese-beer-dessert-does-it-get-better.html

http://www.brianackerly.com/my-cheeses/

http://www.organicauthority.com/foodie-buzz/two-local-pacific-northwest-goat-cheese-farms-organic.html

http://projects.registerguard.com/csp/cms/sites/web/special/tastings/24880091-44/dairy-goat-reyna-goats-farm.csp

http://www.specialtyfood.com/news-trends/featured-articles/article/cheese-focus-new-oregon-cheese-scene/

http://misscheesemonger.com/2011/05/some-more-oregon-cheese-makers/

http://www.culturecheesemag.com/news/adga_results

http://www.pnwcheese.com/2007/11/ferns-edge-goat.html