Given the access we are afforded in today’s global economy, small and local farms are often overlooked as a resource in the United States, yet they still have a significant impact in the communities they serve and belong too. By promoting and supporting local businesses, farmers and trades people, the Foundation’s goal is to directly, positively affect the local economy, thus ensuring long-term sustainability in the region.
A triad of new endeavors, destined to be anchors of the Bovina business community, are soon slated to open.
"The business, the Bovina Valley Creamery, Dry Town Tavern & Inn and Livestock Foundation Farm, are the result of some serious brotherly side-hustle, from Delhi dairy farmer and Alderney cheesemaker Dan Finn and entrepreneur and film maker John Finn."
A couple years ago, Bovina resident John Finn, founder and CEO of Indiepay, which has offices in Delhi, was sitting around with his partner, Wendy Buerge, and his brother, Delhi dairy farmer and cheesemaker Dan Finn. They were talking about the difficulties of small-scale farming—which Dan knew about first-hand—and the budding resurgence in farming in and around Bovina, where the Finns grew up. They wondered if there was something they could do to help it along. The Hilson Bros. grocery store on Route 6 in the hamlet of Bovina Center had been shuttered for decades—what if they could turn it into a farm-to-table restaurant showcasing food grown and raised in the area? Just steps away, the old Bovina creamery, too, was vacant—was there some way to get it up and running again so that dairy farmers had a place to take their milk? And the farm next to the creamery—could that again be home to dairy cows whose milk could be processed next door and the dairy products used in the restaurant just up the block?
New ownership reviving piece of town’s history
"To sustain a viable business, dairy farmers have recognized the need to diversify. Today’s farmers realize that the dairy market has changed and, in Delaware County, that is especially noticeable. At one time, Delaware County was known for its expanse of dairy farms and other forms of agriculture, but today the number of dairy farms has dwindled."
When the Bovina Center Co-op Dairy, better known as the Bovina creamery, was shuttered in 1973, it was a sure sign that the Delaware County town’s best dairying days were over.
After seven decades during which local farmers transported their milk to the building on Creamery Road in Bovina Center—first by horse-drawn wagon, and then by truck—the clanging of cans that one local has described as “the background noise of town” was silenced.
But now, in a development that has been rumored for months, the building has been sold to new owners who plan to reopen it as a creamery in a bid to bolster the burgeoning small-scale dairying enterprises in the Delaware County Catskills.