Green Valley Organics (Redwood Hill Farm/Emmi Roth)

Farm/Brand HeadquartersSebastopol, CA
ProductsYogurt, sour cream, lactose free
Market AreaNationwide
Total Score1217

They write: “Green Valley Organics lactose-free yogurts, kefirs, sour cream, cream cheese and butter were created so people with lactose intolerance can bring real dairy back into their lives, enjoying its health benefits and great taste without digestive troubles. Created by Redwood Hill Farm & Creamery, a 45-year-old company with a strong commitment to digestive health, which is operated by Founder Jennifer Bice to this day, Green Valley Organics is a brand consumers can trust.

Made at a solar-powered creamery with organic milk that carries the Certified Humane Raised and Handled label, Green Valley Organics is dedicated to protecting the environment and strengthening its community. We support Sonoma County workers and local non-profit organizations, small-scale dairy farmers, and the dietary needs of consumers.”

As of early 2017, Emmi Roth owns Redwood Hill Farm (and therefore, the Green Valley Organics brand).

TOTAL (possible score is 1600 plus extra credit) 1217
4-Cow Rating | Excellent
Farmstead dairies earn the most points. Corporations that have a history of skirting the organic rules receive the fewest.
Ownership structure
70Corporate/Investor-owned with deep local ties
Farms that produce 100% of their milk receive the most points. Milk from "open market" or known confinement dairies receive the fewest.
Milk Supply
75Own patrons from small local family farms with some cream purchased on the open market.
100% organic farms receive the most points. Split operations with conventional dairy on the same property receive the fewest.
Organic Production
70Brand markets organic and conventional products
Farms that completed the survey in detail received the most points.
Disclosure of Information for Verification
65Decent disclosure
Points determined by integrity of the brand’s organic certifier.
Organic Certification
87Products are certified by Quality Certification Services (QCS). Supplier farms are certified by California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) and Marin Organic Certified Agriculture (MOCA)
Animal Welfare Approved and Biodynamic certifications receive the most bonus points. Producers are not penalized for not having additional certifications beyond organic.
Other Labels/Standards
60Certified Humane (HFAC) (this is a requirement of all Green Valley Organics suppliers)
100% grass-fed with independent verification of standards
45Sometimes markets “pasture raised” and exceeds minimum requirements
No points are given for this but the information may be useful to certain consumers looking to avoid soy.
Soy Free Ration?
Sliding scale based on policies, enforcement, acreage/cow, days/year on pasture, and permissible exemption.
70Good pasture compliance
One time/day receives the most points. Two times per day is standard.
Times Milked
90Two times a day (standard protocol on legitimate organic dairies)
Lower cull rate scores better, with under 10% receiving the most points.
Cull/death Rate
80Cull rate remains under 15% annually
Farms with closed herds receive the most points. Farms that sell organic calves and buy conventional replacements receive the fewest.
90Majority of supplier farms have closed herds
Standard practice is removing calves shortly after birth, with extra points given for unique ways of managing calves
75Removed shortly after birth (standard practice)
Farms that prohibit antibiotics receive the most points. Farms that allow young stock to receive antibiotics (under one year), receive the fewest.
Antibiotic Use
100No antibiotic use
No hormones is the standard, however some farms do use oxytocin for therapeutic purposes.
Hormone Usage
50Therapeutic hormones may occasionally be used during reproduction (oxytocin).
Farmstead dairies (owner lives on-site) receive the most points. Fewer points are given as oversight declines.
Farm Support
90Brand representatives visit farms at least twice a year.
All ingredients sourced from inside the organization or on the farm receives the highest points. Ingredients from confinement factory farms and/or imported ingredients receive the fewest.
Procurement of Ingredients
100No outside ingredients used
Various levels of extra credit given for 1) providing full organic systems plan, 2) providing details on all farms (multi-farm brands, details on largest five required), and 3) sourcing feed on-farm or domestically.
Extra Credit