Little Qualicum Cheeseworks is a business that brings delicious, artisan cheese to the market every week. Based off of Morningstar Farm which is nestled by Mt. Arrowsmith on Vancouver Island, Little Qualicum makes yummy cheeses from happy cows. Clarke and Nancy Gourlay have been making cheese since 2001 after being inspired by the Swiss cheese they ate while they lived in Switzerland.
The cows from which these fantastic dairy products come from are from a small herd of Holstein, Ayrshire, Browne Swiss and Canadienne dairy cows. They practice responsible farming by using farming equipment as little as possible (the cows graze thus eliminating the need to harvest fields) and they use the cow’s manure and urine to fertilize the pastures. Little Qualicum sells the majority of their products within a 100 mile radius of the farm giving them a small carbon footprint. They are SPCA certified which ensures that their cows are happy and healthy – perfect for producing great milk!
I asked Little Qualicum manager, Susan Hirmer, what she enjoys most about selling cheese at the market and she simply replied, “The opportunity to meet friendly people who appreciate local food.” The business of cheese has been a success for Little Qualicum as I have seen droves of people come to their stall to sample bits of soft and hard cheeses. They have everything from Feta to Caerphilly to Rathtrevor.
Along with their stall at the market, Little Qualicum encourages the public to come and visit Morningstar Farm if they are in the area. They provide tours as well as a store where you can purchase products after you see how they are made.
If you would like more information on Little Qualicum Cheeseworks please visit their website or even better, visit them at the market as they are there every week until October.