Cato Corner Farm
Cato Corner Farm is a mother-and-son-owned farmstead dairy and creamery located in southeastern Connecticut. Liz McAlister dabbled in raising different animals on her farm - goats, cows, chickens, and sheep - but in order to make the farm financially viable and sustainable, she turned to making raw cows' milk cheese in 1997. Cheese being a value-added product, she could essentially charge a fair price for the quality of milk she was making, and the labor that goes into making great cheese and maintaining a sustainable farm.
Her son Mark Gillman joined the business in 1999, and he is now the head cheesemaker, while Liz is the steward of the herd. They milk 45 cows, mostly Jerseys, and one Brown Swiss, but are introducing some Normande genetics to diversify and differentiate their herd and its milk. Cato Corner maintains a 'closed herd' meaning that they do not buy new cows from other farms, rather they rely on growing their herd with the daughters of their milk cows. In order to achieve this, they rely on artificial insemination - choosing desirable traits from bulls and introducing those genetics into their herd.
One of Liz's lifelong dreams was to have her farm preserved for future generations. Thanks to the Connecticut Land Trust and the Natural Resources Conservation Service's Grassland Reserve Program, that dream has become a reality!
Cheeses From This Farm
- Drunken Hooligan