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About US

Our Story

We live where we work! Shepherd’s Way Farms is a Minnesota sheep dairy farm located about an hour south of Minneapolis. Our family farm is 43 acres, with most of that land in pasture for our 225 sheep (and a handful of whey-eating pigs). We also raise chickens and ducks, who provide us with eggs.

Our work life centers around the rhythms of the seasons and the sheep, reliant on the weather and the fluctuations of nature. Focusing on caring for our environment, incorporating agroforestry and native plants has encouraged healthier, diverse plant and animal life on the farm. Healthy soil creates better pastures, feeding happy sheep who in turn help sustain fertile, carbon-sequestering pastures – and beautiful, healthful milk!

We founded Shepherd’s Way Farms in 1995, as a sheep dairy. Neither of us grew up on a farm but we wanted to create a life that was centered on family, farming, and creativity. Little did we know how much work, how much adapting and learning was ahead of us!

In the beginning, we sold fluid sheep milk through a co-operative. In 1998, we made the first batch of cheese, Friesago. Our second cheese, Shepherd’s Hope, followed and Big Woods Blue was the third. In 2002 we moved to our current farm where we have been milking & making cheese ever since.

We’ve now been making cheese for 25 years! Our four sons grew up on the farm and all still contribute in a variety of ways, with the youngest working full-time on the farm.

Steven Read
Jodi Ohlsen Read
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