In February, Rivendale Farms (rivendalefarms.com) owners Thomas and Alba Tull struck a sweet deal with The Milk Shake Factory’s (themilkshakefactory.com) Edwards family to open up 25 new locations and have the Tull’s environmentally sustainable dairy farm supply their delicious ice cream for those incredible, old-fashioned hand-spun shakes.
Located west of Pittsburgh in Bulger, Pennsylvania, Rivendale Farms has a philosophy of sustainable farming, while implementing modern, animal-friendly techniques to create premium products. And their dairy farm is one of the best in the world.
Rivendale not only touts a humane dairy extraction process, but they also have some of the happiest and healthiest Jersey cows around. Originating from the Island of Jersey, a small British isle in the English Channel just off the coast of France, Jersey cows are reported as being purebred for almost six centuries, making them one of the oldest, fastest milk-producing dairy breeds in the world. These cows have a whole lot of personality and are able to produce some of the highest quality, premium milk available.
Christine Grady is the general manager at Rivendale and oversees all areas of operation on the farm. She says the premise behind Rivendale is about creating “healthy, local, environmentally sustainable farming,”while being able to harness the “ultimate extractivity of the product.”
The hands-on, holistic approach Rivendale takes to the milking process is important to the quality of the product and the consumer. “We can show you their faces, we can show you the land they use… we know what they are fed, we can show how they are cared for,” said Grady.
Chris Edwards is CEO of The Milk Shake Factory and said it is some some of the best dairy you’re going to find anywhere. “With Jersey milk, you get a more fresh, full-body taste that you don’t get in other kinds of dairy.”
Rivendale ice cream is a farm-fresh, soft ice cream. Not soft-serve, but a light, heavenly cream that makes each milkshake smoother and creamier. “We have developed all the recipes around the Jersey Milk, ” said Edwards. “And we are making the milkshakes according to the taste and texture of the Rivendale milk.”
The Milk Shake Factory partnership with Rivendale marks the company’s successful transition into becoming completely farm-to-table. “Now when people come into The Milkshake Factory they know exactly where their milk is coming from. Talking about where your dairy comes from becomes interwoven with the story of The Milk Shake Factory.“