Cheese Lovers Newsletter (2.5.2021): Valentine's Day Gift Sets!
Hello Cheese Lovers!
Frigid February has its warm spots with Birthdays
It is February… and everyone knows what that means. It is birthday month for Lucas, baby Conan and much of the Sjostrom family, one of our employees and her family, and there’s also this little holiday that also celebrates love. We have seven different days of family members and friends written on our calendar into this normally 28-day month, plus St. Valentine’s Day. So it is pretty special to us as we get to celebrate something every few days – happy birthday to Grandpa Lowell, Andy, Lucas, Maggie, Conan, Uncle Joe, and Janelle!
Lucas is proud to share his birthday with Garth Brooks, Charles Dickens, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Ashton Kutcher, Matthew Stafford and Sauk Centre’s own Sinclair Lewis. The group (at least the non-dead ones) would normally get together on Sunday, February 7, but due to COVID probably will just have to send cards this year. We’ll say hi to Garth for ya!
Valentine’s Day Packages
Departing fantasy-land and returning to reality, we wanted you to know we have put together a few special packages to help you share your love (or celebrate a birthday?) with someone special. And by a few, we mean six!
Cheese and Chocolate Pairing Gift Set - $49
Cheese and chocolate are completely underrated! We put together a trio of single origin cheeses and chocolates for you to devour over a date night, Valentine's Day or a day on the couch. Join us as we experience the delicious bean-to-bar chocolates of Terroir Chocolate and Redhead Creamery farmstead cheeses.
Brie with Me - $28
The perfect treat for your favorite person, even if that person is you! Brie with Me comes with a wheel of Little Lucy brie, a 2 oz Terroir Chocolate bar, and a precious, hand-made Brie broach! Options include "wrapping" the gift with crinkle paper and a Redhead Creamery cooler bag!
Hav a Heart - $28
Hav a Heart, will ya? This adorable Valentine's Day Gift includes a half pound of Henry's Havarti, a 2 oz Terroir Chocolate bar, and a witty, hand-crafted Edam cheese broach! Options include getting this gift "wrapped" with crinkle paper and a Redhead Creamery Cooler bag!
Lucky to be with You - $38
A luxe gift for the love of your life! Lucky to be with You includes a half pound of Lucky Linda Cheddar-Style Farmstead Cheese, two Mademoiselle Miel's hot cocoa bombs, and a charming, hand-made Emmental cheese broach! Options include "wrapping" this gift with crinkle paper and a Redhead Creamery cooler bag!
My Mun and Only - $27
For your special someone who likes savory over sweet! My Mun and Only includes a wheel of North Fork Whiskey Washed Munster, a 5.5 oz box of Firehook's Garlic Thyme crackers, and a lovable, hand-crafted Blue Cheese broach. Options include getting this gift "wrapped" with crinkle paper and a Redhead Creamery cooler bag!
We Love Minnesota! Cheese Box - $45
We love Minnesota! In this Valentine’s day cheese box you will receive five Minnesotan made cheeses and two Minnesotan treats! Curl up and get ready for some yummy regional snacks!
Valentine's Day Video Chat with us, Forage to Fromage, Alemar Cheese and soft cheese package - $125 - "Soft Cheese Spectacular"
Our love letter to soft cheese....Redhead Creamery and Alemar Cheese Company’s Soft Cheese Spectacular! This incredible cheese box is jam packed with four delicious soft cheeses and a few snacks all made right here in Minnesota. On Sunday, February 14th at 5 pm CST, Kerry Jerred from Forage to Fromage will be hosting a virtual tasting with special guests Alise from Redhead Creamery and Craig, Keith, and Alex from Alemar Cheese Company! We’ll talk about how the cheese is made, where the molds come from and share recipes for each cheese, so you can enjoy them in fun new ways (because let's face it, that's a lot of cheese). Bring your appetite, your questions, and your love for soft cheeses!
From the Farm Question: I’ve seen Farmers with some big opinions on the Biden Administration. Do you think it will change the way you farm or your profitability?
Answer: Well, well, well, I guess we’re diving into the thick of controversy here in month #2 of 2021. Next week we will cover religion and then ask about your personal finances in the week following. ;-)
Just kidding! Actually, we strongly believe politics does not need to be so controversial and we often cover it on our farm tours. By and large, while what the government does will influence how we farm, are taxed, and maybe a few short-term decisions, generally speaking we are confident that our current and future farming practices are built-to-last no matter the administration. The market (that is: how much milk is produced in the country and as result the supply and demand of cheese, milk, yogurt, ice cream and other products) will do far more to dictate our future practices than the government will.
The two most controversial things we’ve seen so far are utilizing the CCC or Commodity Credit Corporation for helping add incentives for carbon-storing practices and something called stepped-up basis that would significantly tax farmland.
First of all, we are not ones to believe that how you voted in the most recent Presidential election means that you agree or disagree 100% with the President or former President (or someone else).
Secondly, it appears clear, from surveys of business leaders to environmental scientists that many believe we need to do more for our climate. We too see the need coming, but also agree the costs can be business-ending or nonsensical if not done appropriately.
Third, details are very important in anything dealing with legislation. And in this case, we've seen few.
There are a few ways these things could go - they could provide big benefits to our type of farm, they could be neutral and voluntary and we would risk participating or not, or it could take equity from our farm. As we see more detail, we'll get involved. There have been millions of proposals since our farm began, and very few of them actually make it to the finish line.
Here's our commitment:
1. We are going to do the best we can for the environment while also considering our financial and social status. If we are out of business, we cannot do much good. If our neighbors hate us (for example, if we do something really smelly that is good for the environment) we also won't last long. So those are three virtually equal factors.
2. We'll stay involved. We call to weigh in often when legislation affects our farm at the county, state or federal level. Usually, the sound-bytes you hear on radio or see on television are not the full story. We have 201 state Legislators, a Governor, a Representative, two U.S. Senators and the President to talk to about issues. We do not think when they wake up in the morning they are trying to ruin our business nor the planet. And they've got a lot of other people's opinions whom deserved to be listened to, too.
3. If we need your help, we'll let you know! And, if you want to support our kind of business, feel free to call any of the aforementioned people to support us. Here's what we know groups are working on related to us right now (for full disclosure, some of these are from Minnesota Milk's legislative priorities... where Lucas works full-time) to help keep our business competitive:
Expanding the Beginning Farmer Tax Credit to immediate family members
• Currently this 5% tax credit can only be utilized by unrelated parties, which is not typically how a family farm gets passed down to the next generation
Counting "commercial" ag businesses as agricultural property
• When we added the creamery, the tax rate for the land surrounding the building went to the much higher commercial rate - same is true for on-farm wineries, distilleries, cideries and more
Eliminating unnecessary laws related to manure application
• It is hard enough with weather today to find good days to apply manure. But we can do it.. a new rule would eliminate that for many Minnesota farms even though most already have manure management plans that have fully taken into account agronomic and water quality efforts
Enhancing Border-to-Border Broadband Internet investments
• If you've used the internet in our Creamery - which we pay for at the highest rate possible to have a chance at getting enough bandwidth - you will understand why this is important to us
Clarifying rules about hard cider and wine
• Allowing hard cider to be made up to 8.5% alcohol (currently 7%)
• Allowing wine up to 16% alcohol (currently 14%)<
• Including cideries in the current "Small winery credit"
These are all state-level items and will likely have far greater impact than anything proposed at the federal level. That being said, laws and rules continue to surprise us, so never say never (and stay involved!).
Cheese In-Depth with Michael Landis
If you missed last week’s chat’s with Alise and Michael Landis, he posted the videos in both the full 20-minute segment and also divided into six different smaller parts. Check them out here:
Episode 68 – Redhead Creamery – Alise Sjostrom (https://youtu.be/1UVOBmW4Fls)
Episode 68.1 – Redhead Creamery – 4 Cheese Tasting (https://youtu.be/jI4mvhl_WwM)
Episode 68.2 - Redhead Creamery Little Lucy Brie (https://youtu.be/PRz-C5lHzys)
Episode 68.3 - Redhead Creamery Henry's Havarti (https://youtu.be/Qow9Vlv3vtc)
Episode 68.4 - Redhead Creamery Lucky Linda Clothbound Cheddar (https://youtu.be/WV2HGe03g3Q)
Episode 68.5 - Redhead Creamery Margie Cave Aged Cheddar (https://youtu.be/paGpjkNdYUU)
Episode 68.6 - Redhead Creamery North Fork (https://youtu.be/uXCK7DVJSS0)