National Farmers Organization
Ray Scheesley

Nestled in the rolling foothills of Allegany County on the outskirts of the two-college town of Alfred, NY, lays a small but quaint 50 cow Certified Organic dairy farm named Sunny Cove. Jerry and Dottie Snyder, along with their 8 children, operate a not so typical “raw milk permitted” Organic Dairy farm and ship through Organic Valley and NFO.

Members of NFO since 2006 they have operated their picturesque dairy farm keeping three main points in mind: Family, Cow Health and a meticulous focus on Milk Quality. He will also be the first to tell anyone that Raw Milk is his passion.

After graduating from Alfred State College of Agriculture in 1978, Jerry started his dairy on a grass fed basis, keeping a focus on cow health and wise use of forages. This philosophy made his transition to organic in 2002 relatively easy. He and his family maintained an on farm milk quality average that earned him a ranking in the top of New York State’s strict bacteria standards. This led him and his family to apply for and receive, a New York State Raw Milk Sales Permit in 2006. These permits are rare in NY and he still maintains it to this day.

Jerry has a very strong conviction when it comes to raw milk, “This is pure milk. It is totally fresh, unprocessed and without pathogens. This is milk like God intended you to drink it.” This conviction is what makes Jerry and his family unique in the way they are as producers. He sees a future in the dairy industry, unlike some who think it is on the edge of collapse. He states that “If more farmers can increase their cow management skills and therefore their milk quality, there can be revitalization in the region and more market opportunities both on farm and off the farm.” Snyder maintains open conversations with milk authorities, local and state representatives and senators on a regular basis, about these issues.

What makes his dairy farm not so typical is the diversification of farm raised and organic certified products sold from their on-site store. Certified Organic Beef, apples and maple syrup are just a few items you would find in this family store. He maintains a small library inside the store also to keep consumers informed and educated about farming, organics, and real food. Occasionally you may see a farm tour of students or boy scouts, learning about his farm. Jerry and his family love to educate and inform the public.

The farm has its own website, where anyone can go to see what Jerry, his family, and his farm are all about. As the Certified Milk Inspector for Sunny Cove Farm since 2006, it has been a great pleasure to work with Jerry and his family as I have learned a lot from him. He keeps a beautiful stable and an exceptional milk house with well cared for surroundings. His passion for his family, his faith, and his farm stands to be a model for myself. His candor and kindness are examples for others. He is truly dedicated to educating the consumer and teaching that there is real food and healthy food available to consumers.

National Farmers is proud to have this quality farm as part of the organization’s producer block!

528 Billy Sunday Road, Suite 100
PO Bos 2508
Ames, OA 500`0-2508

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