Image by Meredith Dairy via their website.
In the heart of Australia, where the sun-kissed landscapes of Meredith, Victoria stretch as far as the eye can see, Sandy and Julie Cameron have cultivated a thriving agricultural venture known as Meredith Dairy. Celebrated for their exquisite marinated cheese, this family-owned business has not only redefined the art of cheese-making but also exemplifies a commitment to sustainable farming practices that resonate with their love for the land.
Sandy and Julie, the founders of Meredith Dairy, share a deep-rooted connection to farming that spans their entire lives. Growing up on farms, their childhood dreams revolved around the earth beneath their feet, cultivating crops, raising animals, and savoring the simplicity of country life. This shared passion for agriculture manifested later in life when Sandy, a trained veterinarian, and Julie, an intensive care nurse, decided to leave their professional pursuits behind and plunge into full-time farming in Meredith.
In 1991, facing the uncertainties of traditional farming, where the prices of wool and commodities were unpredictable, Sandy and Julie embraced innovation as a survival strategy. The duo turned their attention to a love they both shared – food. The decision to milk sheep and goats for cheese and yogurts laid the foundation for Meredith Dairy, a beacon of excellence and sustainability in the dairy industry.
Central to the philosophy of Meredith Dairy is a deep appreciation for the natural world and the local community. Sandy and Julie believe in the reciprocal relationship between the land and its stewards. As the land provides, they are committed to protecting and enhancing it for future generations. This ethos underscores their vision for Meredith Dairy to be a positive force for sustainability on a global scale.
A key aspect of Meredith Dairy's success lies in its vertical integration – the company owns and controls its entire supply chain. This unique approach has allowed them to assemble a diverse and talented team, united by a common vision of contributing to a sustainable world. Teamwork, perseverance, maximum effort, and continuous improvement are the shared values that drive Meredith Dairy forward.
The well-being of their goats and sheep is paramount to the success of Meredith Dairy. The goats, content and healthy, enjoy a vibrant social life, a nutritious diet, and access to shelter in open-walled sheds. Meanwhile, the sheep roam freely, their woolly coats protecting them from the elements without the need for additional bedding or sheds. This nomadic lifestyle not only ensures the animals' welfare but also fertilizes paddocks and regenerates the soil, embodying the sustainable practices at the core of Meredith Dairy's mission.
Today, Meredith Dairy stands as a testament to the resilience of passionate farmers who dared to innovate and redefine the narrative of traditional agriculture. Through their commitment to sustainability, excellence in cheese-making, and a profound connection to the land, Sandy and Julie Cameron have crafted more than just marinated cheese – they've woven a tale of harmony between nature, community, and the pursuit of a sustainable world.