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Raw Goat Milk & Herdshares

The herdshare program is not currently accepting new members for our herdshare program. We are grateful to our herdshare members for their support and enthusiasm for our milk!


Other regional farms that have active raw goat milk herdshare programs: 


Charles City/New Kent/Norge/Toano/Williamsburg - Morning Glori Farm  

Fredericksburg - Anna's Chestnut Oaks

Mechanicsville - Fireflies & Sunshine

Richmond (west end) & Farmville - Windyfarm Dairy Goats

Advantages of Goat's Milk

Goat milk is an excellent, sweet-tasting milk in its raw form.  

If you have tried goat milk in the past, I can almost guarantee

you that it tastes nothing like the processed product that you

buy in the store.


It does NOT taste "bucky" or "goaty", tasting no different than cow milk for most palates.  

Many scientific studies have shown that goat milk is superior to cow milk for a variety of reasons:  

  • Goat milk has been used for thousands of years as a substitute for breastmilk, and for orphan puppies, kittens, piglets, calves, and foals, as it is kinder on tender stomachs.

  • Individuals with cow's milk allergies are usually able to digest goat's milk, as the casein protein responsible for allergies in cow's milk (A1) is not present in goat milk, which naturally has the A2 casein protein.

  • If you are lactose-intolerant, you may be able to handle goat milk - the amount of lactose in goat milk is lower, and a raw product contains the enzymes and probiotics to help digest it.

  • Goat milk is naturally homogenized, which means that the fat globules take a long time to rise to the top and you don't have to shake the raw milk like you would with cow milk.  The fat globules are also smaller, and so are easier to digest.

  • Goat milk is higher in calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and Vitamin A than cow milk.


We require that you to take home a free quart of milk to try before purchasing a share or request to be placed on the waiting list.  In our experience, fresh raw goat milk lasts at least 2 weeks in the refrigerator before needing to be thrown out. ​​ As with all perishable items, and especially dairy products, always keep milk refrigerated, and do not leave the jars out on the counter.

What is a Herd Share?

In a herd share, you purchase an interest in the herd, similar to purchasing stock in a company. You then pay Bees Knees Farm a monthly boarding fee for care and feeding of the herd.  In return, you receive a portion of the raw milk (typically half-gallon weekly for much of the year, more in the spring and less depending on supply December through February), and first right to purchase any goats or kids offered for sale from the herd. You can sell your share back to the farm at any time for the full price minus a $10 processing fee.  

For more information and a copy of the herd share contract, email or message us.  Potential and current herd share members are always welcome to attend the AM milkings to observe the process - just let Sarah know you'll be attending and she'll have coffee ready for you at 5 AM!​​


Natural Dairy Goat Feeding and Care

March through October, the goats are rotationally 

grazed on the farm, and are moved from pasture to 

pasture every week.  Blackberry brambles, pine 

seedlings, vines, and other woody plants are their 

natural forage; they much prefer weeds and woody 

growth over grass!  We feed non-soy, non-GMO

grains and local, non-GMO alfalfa, along with

locally sourced hay to supplement and support milk 


​​Compassionate Herd Management

In keeping with our natural management philosophy,

we do not separate kids from their mothers and bottle

feed them, as is commonly done in the dairy industry.  

Instead, the kids stay with mom all day, nursing freely,

and are penned together overnight such that they can 

see and touch mom, but not nurse.  We then milk in the

morning, and return the kids to their moms for the day. 

Believe me - just like you, after a few days, these moms

are happy to send their babies to the 'babysitter' for the

night, and the kids are happy for a yummy treat in their



Bucklings are sold or separated from the does at 2-3 months of age, as they are potentially 

fertile at this point.  Doelings continue to nurse until they are naturally weaned, either by choice or by mom.   This method allows for stronger, larger kids and better immune systems. Kids are handled daily to ensure that they are well socialized.

While this method lowers our daily milk yield by 50%, it allows us to have more flexibility in the evenings (with 3 children between 14 and 18, a necessity!).  We can also choose to skip a morning milking occasionally by just leaving the kids with their mothers overnight.


The Milking Process


The does are brought to the milking room - they are

eager to come and eat their breakfast while being

milked.  The udder is sanitized,  and the first milk stream

is put through a strip cup to ensure that the milk is clean

and the udder is healthy.  We milk by hand or by machine

milker on a sanitized milking stand, and milk is filtered 

and pumped directly into a stainless steel container.  Once

all of the does have been milked, we clean the milk machine

using a 4-wash sterilization process that thoroughly cleans

without leaving a foreign chemical residue.

The milk is then transferred from the milk bucke into glass containers and placed in the freezer for 40 minutes for rapid cooling. All equipment is washed and sanitized daily, and deep-cleaned in a manner consistent with standard dairy practices.   We test milk quality using different tests on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis, in order to ensure clean and sanitary milking practices.  See below for laboratory test results for the past 6 months.  The does are tested for Tuberculosis and Brucellosis yearly, with the most recent negative test in January 2021.  All historical test data is available to herdshare members.

We are proud to be listed by the Raw Milk Institute - the listing process is a rigorous review of all of our processes and monthly testing to ensure consistent milk quality.  This listing makes us one of the few raw milk dairies reviewed and listed under the most rigorous raw milk standards in the world.  In fact, we were the first goat dairy to be listed by RAWMI!

grazing doe and kid
grazing goats
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