Farmer interview/ Food delivery in Japan

Japan Farm visit: Tokachi Alps Brown Swiss Dairy Farm in Hokkaido

On our recent trip to Hokkaido I had the unique opportunity to visit the Tokachi Alps Brown Swiss Dairy Farm and interview the farm owner Terry Hashimoto.

I am a huge fan of dairy products, especially those which are marketed by the farmers themselves direct to the consumer!

Tokachi Alps Ranch (Hashimoto Ranch) is unique in Japan for 3 key reasons:

  1. Natural grazing – The farm has been certified since 2010 as a grazing animal husbandry practice ranch. One of the requirements for certification is that there is at least 0.25 hectares (2,500 meters squared) grazing land per animal, and that the management of the farm is also environmentally friendly. You can see from the photos below the abundance of grazing land for the dairy cows and how happy they are!
  2. Brown Swiss cattle breed – there are just over 4000 Brown Swiss cattle in Japan, so it is a very niche breed in Japan. Tokachi Alps ranch specializes in Brown Swiss – they are wonderfully suitable for grazing, and they are strong to both cold and hot weather (which is important in Hokkaido as it is hot in summer and snows in winter). Furthermore, the milk is high in protein, giving it a rich and full-bodied flavor. Delicious!
  3. Ice-cream – you can order the Tokachi Alps ice-cream and milk jam online from their website. This is a wonderful way to not only order delicious ice-cream and have it delivered to your door in Tokyo, but it also means you are supporting the farmer Terry Hashimoto and his family with their wonderful business. See photos below for our ice-cream delivery. Such a great treat for the kids!

See the Tokachi Alps farm website for more information and to order ice-cream. If you can’t understand Japanese, email Terry the owner directly (Terry can understand English): shopmaster@tokachi-alps.com

The dairy cows live on the green pastures next to the dairy farm. Twice a day they walk to the milking parlor to be milked. Very happy cows!

The dairy cows live on the green pastures next to the dairy farm. Twice a day they walk to the milking parlor to be milked. Very happy cows!

 

Brown Swiss cows are super quiet and friendly

Brown Swiss cows are super quiet and friendly

 

Making some milk for the calves

Making some milk for the calves

 

You can stay at the farm in this cute cottage and experience milking the cows in the morning with the owner. So cool!

You can stay at the farm in this cute cottage and experience milking the cows in the morning with the owner. So cool! Cute farm dog 🙂

 

Little cafe on the farm where you can taste their ice-cream and milk jam

Little cafe on the farm where you can taste their ice-cream and milk jam. Here is my mum and my kids tasting the ice-cream 🙂

 

Family photo with dairy farmer Terry and his wife, at their farm in Hokkaido!

Family photo with dairy farmer Terry and his wife, at their farm in Hokkaido!

 

I ordered ice-cream from their farm which was delivered by courier!

I ordered ice-cream from the Tokachi Alps farm which was delivered by courier!

 

8 ice-cream cups straight from the farm

8 ice-cream cup set – yum!

 

Exciting to have the ice-cream delivered from the farm we had visited - the kids loved it!

Exciting to have the ice-cream delivered to our home in Tokyo – the kids loved it!

 

Deciding which flavor to have - we got Premium (very creamy and yummy), vanilla, and cream cheese flavors

Deciding which flavor to have – we got Premium (very creamy and yummy), vanilla, and cream cheese flavors

 

Would be cute to order these for a party - very special!

Would be cute to order these for a party – very special!

 

This is the cream cheese ice-cream

This is the cream cheese ice-cream

 

Kids loved having ice-cream delivery!

Kids loved having ice-cream delivery!

 

Happy girl - she didn't want to put the ice-cream back in the freezer! Ha

Happy girl – she didn’t want to put the ice-cream back in the freezer! Ha

 

Thank you Terry so much for your time and for allowing me to interview you! We had a wonderful time visiting your property and tasting your dairy products. We will be ordering more ice-cream very soon!

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