Hafod Welsh Organic Cheese

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Place Category: food & drink

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  • Hafod cheese is a traditional hard cheese handmade by Sam and Rachel Holden on Wales’ longest certified organic dairy farm Bwlchwernen Fawr.

    We only use the raw (unpasteurised) milk from our 65 Ayrshire cows to make Hafod. Ayrshire milk is rich in butterfat and protein and is widely regarded as being ideally suited to cheese making.
    The name – Hafod (pronounced Havod) is Welsh for summer place or pasture. In the farm’s case Hafod is an area of meadow next to the river Aeron where all the cows graze as heifers before joining the milking herd.
    Bwlchwernen Fawr has been farmed organically for 35-years by Sam’s father Patrick Holden Director of the Soil Association.

    For a taste of life on our farm, do check out the video in this listing.

    Us and the farm

    Bwlchwernen Fawr is a 130-acre farm situated about 10 miles from the Ceredigion coast, West Wales. Originally as a member of a commune, then tenant and now owner, Patrick Holden has been based at the farm since the early 70’s. In the early 80s, Patrick became increasingly involved with the organic movement, specifically the Soil Association where he was Director until 2010. The Soil Association is the UK’s leading environmental charity promoting sustainable, organic farming and championing human health. It’d here he met his wife, Becky, who now runs the farm as well as bringing up their 4 young boys William, Ben, Harry and James.

    Bwlchwernen Fawr has been certified organic management since 1973, which makes it the longest standing registered organic dairy farm in Wales.

    Our team

    Rob, manager of the dairy and experienced cheesemaker who has been making cheese since 2003. Rob had previously been a cheesemaker at Gorwydd Caerphilly before joining the team at the dairy.

    Jos, cheesemaker and part-time firefighter, who has been making Hafod since 2012.

    Matt, despatch and store manager. Matt deals with selecting and despatching cheese to our customers.

    Tess, assistant cheesemaker and storeworker. Tess balances both making cheese and caring for the cheeses on their year long journey.

    Rachel, our administration clerk. Without her numerical skills and head for mathematics we would be under a mountain of paperwork.

    Nick, our resident herdsman. Apart from caring for and nurturing the cows, Nick is our social media expert. If ever you have chuckled over one of our tweets or sighed over one of the photos of the farm in spring, you have Nick to thank for it!


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