It all started in 1982…
In 1982, Bryant Fisher decided Yantis, Texas was the very spot for a growing dairy farm. With the help of friends and family, he started building the parlor with his own hands. During that time, many coalmines had bought out land that several dairy farms in the area were sitting on. The first buildings, and much of the equipment used in the creation of Bryant's new dairy, came from those farms that had closed down as a result. The first cows in the parlor were predominately Holsteins just like most dairies. They were the popular dairy cow, pumping out a ton of milk and making the green pastures pop with their flashy black and white hides. Milk production began in 1986.
After milking several cows of a few different breeds, Bryant had decided to fuel JR's desire to show dairy cows. In 1989 they reconfigured their herd and moved to only registered dairy cows. JR began his show career attending shows around Texas with various dairy breeds that were all part of their current herd. Blake soon followed, and they were both known in the dairy cow show circuit all over the state. Between Blake and JR showing dairy cows and the interest in knowing about each breed that "could" excel in milk production, there have been a large variety of cows that have come through the Southspoon milk parlor. Holsteins of both the black & white and red & white variety, Jerseys (of course), Aryshires, Guernseys, and Brown Swiss have all made appearances multiple times. Some of the less common breeds like Dutch Belted, Normande, Montebeliarde, and Lineback have been in the barn as well. It was giving the Fisher men an opportunity to have hands-on experience with many breeds and to decide on the best dominant breed for the dairy farm. Jerseys won by a landslide. And while you can still see a Guernsey or 2, a few Holsteins, and a couple other breeds, that brown cow with the beautiful black face dominates the pastures at Southspoon Farms.
Fast Forward to 2008
Fast forward to 2008 when Bryant brought home the first herd of 16 milk goats. All of the goat milk went to feeding calves during that time, and that's when Southspoon Farms officially became an LLC. In 2009 the Fisher men built a wild game processing business just down the road from the dairy barn, and they were growing produce that was becoming very popular at Farmer's Markets in Sulphur Springs. Still milking cows, by 2011 they were selling goat milk to Mozzerella Cheese Company in Dallas, TX, and they still needed more milk from their goats to satisfy the demand. In 2012 JR moved up to the northwest, so this growing endeavor of dairy goats was up to Bryant and Blake to continue. They progressively grew their dairy goat herd and began doing business with a small cheese maker in Haute Goat Creamery in Longview, TX..
Over the years they have provided milk to cheese makers across the state, including small goat dairy farms that don't have enough milk to supply their customers with the demand for cheese. Why are people calling Southspoon Farms for goat milk? With over 150 goats on the milk line at any given time, the production of goat milk in the parlor is by far the most of any farm in the state of Texas. PLUS, Southspoon Farms can provide goat milk year round. Standard dairy goats have a limited breeding cycle through the year; thus having a limited lactation. Bryant and Blake have grown the goat herd and developed a system of having a steady supply of goat milk for 12 straight months. So if you need goat milk, Southspoon Farms will have it available!
So what about the name? Where did the name "Southspoon Farms" come from? Well, you will have to ask when you come visit us.