Annick & Koen

Annick & Koen

Annick and Koen, meet the farmers of de Zuivelarij here.

In our dairy we think to a good relationship with our farmers is of the utmost importance. Here you will meet Annick and Koen, local farmers who work in a modern and ecological way. Annick and Koen supply the milk we use for our Berloumi. A halloumi style grilling cheese.

The Zuivelarij believes in the short chain and together with Koen and Annick we ensure a strong bond between farmers, products and consumers. But we do not believe in too small-scale production, a certain scale is important for economical and ecological reasons. This way we make our cheeses in the most ecological and food-safe way.

This interview with Annick and Koen was written by Marthe de Schutter and Lies François.

Job students summer 2020

How many animals do you have?

“We have about two hundred cows. Of these, about 100 give between 28 and 31 litres of milk every day. That amount depends a bit on the season, the weather and the feed.”

How many hours a day do you work on the farm?

“We start at 7 in the morning, and we stop at 9 p.m. In total, we work about 13 hours a day. This is from Monday to Sunday, year after year. We start the day by milking the cows and we end the day with milking the cows.”

What’s your favorite job on the farm?

Koen: “I’ve been doing this work since I was a kid and I’ve always loved doing it. It’s like I’ve made my hobby my profession.”

Annick: “I don’t really have a favorite task, there is a lot of variation in the work and that appeals to me. You live to the rhythm of the seasons and the animals, it’s a way of life.”

You live to the rhythm of the seasons and the animals. Farming is a way of life.

Farmer Koen milks the cows.
Farmer Annick feeds a calf.

What beautiful moments do you remember?

“It’s always nice when a calf is born. A calf with the mother cow is always nice to see. About 120 calves are born every year, it’s always nice to get new life on the farm and it hurts us when the calves end badly.”

We attach great importance to sustainability. How do you deal with that on the farm?

“We do our best to use energy from renewable sources. For example, we have solar panels, a heat exchanger and a solar water heater. We also try to use water sparingly, we reuse the cleaning water and collect rainwater. It is interesting to work ecologically, it is good for the environment and for our wallet. Because a farmer is by nature thinking economical. We also participate in studies to limit the use of antibiotics.”

We do our best to use energy from renewable sources.

What do you think of the products from the Zuivelarij?

Koen: “In the beginning, we had never heard about a grilling cheese like Berloumi. It was something completely unknown to us. It is something new, but we are pleasantly surprised with the possibilities and the results of the cheese. In the meantime, we eat it ourselves and recommend it to all our friends.”

Annick: “I have a lot of admiration for David for bringing something like this to the market. I couldn’t do it myself. On the website you find many recipes, this is always nice for some inspiration.”

How do you experience the cooperation with the Zuivelarij?

Koen: “It’s a very positive experience. I’ve known David since we were kids and and at school, which made things a easier. Our cooperation is going in a very easy way and at least we now know where our milk is going.”

Are you curious about more stories from our farmers? We have many more interviews, get to know our farmers on this page.

A calf from koen and Annick's farm.

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