Welcome to the LaClare Family Farm, which is owned and operated by Larry and Clara Hedrich of Chilton, Wisconsin. The farm was established in 1978 when the property and buildings were purchased. Along with the farm came two milking goats, two peacocks and a flock of laying hens, thus our introduction into dairy goats.
We raised dairy goats as a hobby when our children were very young. Then as our children Anna, Greg, Katie, Jessica and Heather reached 4-H age we invested in registered stock and began showing.
As our show herd grew we began commercial dairy goat milk production and started shipping milk in the spring of 1996. Some of our milk is currently being marketed through the Quality Dairy Goat Cooperative of Wisconsin, (QDGPC), of which Larry is the manager. QDGPC supplies the goat milk for Carr Valley Cheese award winning goat and mixed milk cheese. It also provides Grade A goat milk for bottling to Sunshine Distribution for Southern Wisconsin and the Chicago market. Sunshine provides whole goat milk, low fat goat milk, and goat milk butter for these markets. LaLoos Goat Milk Ice Cream is made with QDGPC milk and distributed through the entire USA. The QDGPC also provides the goat milk to Satori Cheese for its award winning Caprimenthe goat cheese.
In 2008 batches of raw goat milk cheese were made for LaClare Farms, which would become Evalon. In 2009 LaClare Farms Evalon placed 2nd in its class at the U.S. Cheese Championship Competition in Green Bay, Wisconsin, as well as 2nd in its class at the American Dairy Goat Association Cheese Championship in New York. In 2010 LaClare Farms Evalon placed 6th in its class at the World Cheese Championship in Madison, Wisconsin and 4th at the Wisconsin State Fair Cheese Competition. In 2011 LaClare Farms Specialties Evalon place Best in Show at the U.S. Cheese Championships. Evalon and Evalon with Fenugreek also placed Best in Class at the American Cheese Contest in Montreal Canada. In 2011 LaClare Farms Specialties began a new product called Chevre; a fresh soft spreadable cheese. The Chevre placed second at the Wisconsin State Fair Cheese and Butter contest.
Our current production involves milking 375 head of dairy goats year round. Some of our dairy goat herd is registered through the American Dairy Goat Association (ADGA) and the rest are registerable. We do DHI testing of the milking herd. The farm is on a monthly herd health program, which includes ultra-sound testing, to verify pregnancy.
To keep our dairy herd on a year round milking status we breed out of season using a lighting program; out of season does are pen bred, whereas in season does are hand mated. Artificial insemination is used with a select few does. Carefully selected bucks are collected and the buck semen is for sale.
Kids are fed heat-treated colostrum at birth, followed by pasteurized goat milk. They are slowly introduced to milk replacer and are weaned at 7-8 weeks of age. At this age they are eating an 18% kid grain mix and drinking water. The 18% kid grain mix is in a mini pelleted form and will be fed until four months of age when the grain is switched to a 15% pelleted feed. LaClare Farms does not use growth hormones or low level antibiotic feeds for the animals at any time. We believe feeding a good quality, balanced ration to our goats, they will not only grow healthy but they will produce natural, high quality milk for our consumers as well.
Both Larry and Clara worked off the farm until June 2001 when Larry resigned from his job as area Superintendent for a construction company and began operating the farm full time. Clara teaches high school agriculture at West De Pere High School.
We feel strongly about service to our community and helping others and as a result Larry and Clara both have served on the Chilton Catholic School board. Larry is serving on the Chilton Public School board. Both serve on the Calumet County fair board, Clara is the Fair Board Secretary. Larry is a past-president of the Wisconsin Dairy Goat Association. Clara is the past-newsletter editor for WDGA and currently the secretary. Both serve on committees for the American Dairy Goat Association. Clara is on the Youth 4-H / FFA Projects Committee and Larry is on the Products Committee. Both hold their judge's license to judge goats at Wisconsin county fairs.
Please call or send an email if you would like more information. Just let us know how we can help you.
Again, Welcome to the LaClare Family Farm.
Larry and Clara Hedrich