AIRDRIE, Alta. – When Norman Storch’s children get away to milk, they don’t concern yourself with getting a stinging slap in the face from the wayward cow’s end.

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June 24, 2021 9:56 pm | Leave your thoughts

AIRDRIE, Alta. – When Norman Storch’s children get away to milk, they don’t concern yourself with getting a stinging slap in the face from the wayward cow’s end.

Profits scarce in sheep dairies

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Alternatively, they work with peaceful sheep that stay patiently in a parlor waiting their turn.

For the year that is last Norman and Leona Storch, of Hanna, in east-central Alberta, have milked sheep and shipped the merchandise to a processor in Didsbury, about 50 kilometres north of Calgary.

“This isn’t get rich quickly. A sheep dairy is of work,” said Storch at a recently available seminar for farmers thinking about this industry that is new.

“It could be very difficult at this time to declare that it will be possible to create a sheep dairy up and work out cash at it,” he stated.

At Spruce View, Alta., near Red Deer, Peter and Christiane Welkerling have operated a sheep that is licensed and processing company since 1994.

Even though the Storchs ship their milk out for processing, at Welkering’s Shepherd Gourmet Dairy, all things are done on location.

“You need to approach this as a dairy farmer, not really a sheep farmer,” said Welkerling.

Money in milk

The Storches got into the sheep milking business after they shut out their chicken procedure four years back and had 20,000 sq. f t of unused barn area. The barns weren’t strong sufficient to support cattle so that the Storchs investigated sheep. W l and prices that are lamb t variable, but milk did actually have potential.

They raise East Friesian, a tame white dairy breed from European countries by having a hefty layer of w l that really must be sheared.

Storch keeps the sheep in lots instead of on pasture. They get barley, as well as silage made from green barley and oats. The Storches milked 35 sheep in 2010 and plan to have 80 the following year.

At milking time the sheep stroll up a ramp and stay at a 45 degree angle waiting to be h ked to milking devices.

“Once we learned what to do, the sheep are particularly trainable,” said Storch.

Compared to other brand new livestock endeavors, the sheep industry possesses support network that is g d. There clearly was feed that is abundant g d weather and dairy experience also as qualified sheep experts.

“We’re not branching out into something that is completely foreign to us. All we have to do is tweak the systems as you go along to help make the sheep match the machine in the place of something that is starting brand new and different,” said Storch.

Welkerling began six sheep to his farm he milked by hand and their wife once made cheese into the kitchen. In 1994, they got a licence after creating a more efficient processing plant on the farm.

Annual processing ability is 40,000 litres.

They make flavored feta cheeses, brie, yogurt and have now experimented with several cheeses that are hard. They will have suppliers in Calgary and Edmonton in which the cheeses are sold to restaurants and supermarkets.

The Welkerlings imported East Friesian semen and embryos from Europe to build a quality flock. Welkerling will breed 135 ewes this year.

He operates their sheep on pasture to keep feed expenses down. Lambs stay along with their mothers for 35-40 times ahead of the ewes are changed into the milking parlor.

Milking period lasts about 200 times.

Sheep milk is greater in fat, protein and calcium compared to cow’s milk. It is also more easily digested by people who are lactose intolerant because the fat molecules are half the size of those produced by cows or goats.

You will find about 5,000 sheep being milked in the usa and about 20 people in Canada are attempting it. There are four sheep dairies in Alberta.

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