Alexandrina Cheese Company. Handmade cheeses from our farm on the Fleurieu Peninsula, South Australia.
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Alexandrina Cheese Company. Handmade cheeses from our farm on the Fleurieu Peninsula, South Australia.
     

Event History

2008

Bluebell's Birthday Celebrations in July

Waving the Australian Flag at the 2008 World Jersey Cheese Awards

Autumn is filled with Fiddles and Fiddles on the Farm with the Fiddle Chicks

Alexandrina Vintage Cheddar - Finalist - 2008 Australian Grand Dairy Awards - Cheddar-Style Cheese Class

Jazz with Janet, and the Jerseys - January 2008


2007

Christmas Jazz with The Sentimentals – December 2007

Bob Magor – local bush poet. ‘ Rhymes and good times’ November 2007

South Australian Tourism Award 2007 – Silver Medal

Mt Jagged Mature Cheddar – Gold Medal – CheeseFest07 Competition

Alexandrina Vintage Cheddar – Champion Cheddar 2007 – South Australian Dairy Awards

Fleurieu Peninsula Tourism Award 2007 – Regional Produce


2006

Wholesale Prospectus designed and launched by BMD

Mt Jagged Mature Cheddar - First Prize – Royal Adelaide Show 2006

March 1, 2006 - Retail shop open for daily trading


2005

Mt Jagged Mature Cheddar - First Prize – Royal Adelaide Show 2005

Herd numbers reduced due to dry weather - 80 cows.

Rebekah visits United Kingdom on a World Jersey Bureau Exchange


2004

Pure Jersey Cream – Australian Grand Dairy Award 2004

Mt Jagged Mature Cheddar - First Prize – Royal Adelaide Show 2004

Retail brochure launched by Mayor Kym McHugh


2003

Pure Jersey Cream – First Prize – Royal Adelaide Show 2003

Mt Jagged Mature Cheddar - First Prize – Royal Adelaide Show 2003

Ashely started working in Production

Rebekah started working in Sales / Marketing


2002

Mt Jagged Mature Cheddar - First Prize – Royal Adelaide Show 2002


2001

January 1, 2001 - Retail shop open for weekend trading

Dan McCaul makes his first Cheddar on 10 April 2001


2000

2000 Building finished, and factory commissioned

Herd numbers at 160 cows.

 

Alexandrina Cheese Company Established 2001

Faced with dairy deregulation in the late 1990s, the McCaul Family were forced to list their options for staying on their farm in the future. Other dairy farms in the southern areas were planning for expansion – buying more adjacent land, expanding their milk harvesting systems for larger rotary dairy models, and increasing the number of cows to support the bulk milk market. This wasn’t an option for the Alexandrina family farm – already land locked with beautiful vineyards.

The other option was to cease to operate the farm as a dairy altogether, and find an alternative source of income than milk. Many wonderful farms in the Fleurieu Peninsula have suffered this fate. The Mt Compass Jersey Cattle Club used to support near to thirty Jersey dairy farms and now lists around than fifteen members.

The family farm, and its dairying traditions of nearly thirty years were too important to just simply stop with a sudden closure. The land has been producing Jersey milk since 1973, and Krystyna’s family were not going to be easily convinced to change industries or to find work off farm. Keeping rural roots was an important factor, not only to the great lifestyle offered by living on the farm.

The amazing fate of Dan McCaul marrying a dairy farmer’s daughter is that he brings the knowledge of three generations of cheese making to the equation. This tempered the third option as clearly as any other option to the list.

“I’d really like to make some cheese” Dan says to Krystyna his wife. “Ok – but what kind of cheese?” she poses.

“Hard style cheese – like my Jerry, my grandfather used to make – like Kevin, my father used to make” Dan pushes.

So, it was settled between the two of them at the family kitchen table. The market research began with family holidays to Victoria, Tasmania and finally to Queensland to attend a Department of Primary Industries Cheese Making course.

Plans went ahead with our local council Alexandrina, then planners, architects, builders, concreters, and teams of workers for the project to commence.

Building took it’s time…but it was worth the wait with an export quality cheese factory built on the family farm in Mt Jagged, South Australia.

Photographs below;

The old ‘oats’ paddock.

Jul-Krys Dairy Farm – Tangala proposed processing plant and site.

Mt Jagged farm paddocks where George Manowski grew oats in 1975 -1976.

Putting on the roof of the new cheese factory.

Phil and Mark Redden and sons (Redden Bros Pty Ltd), of Jamestown undertaking the construction.

Craning up the iron – Anthony ‘IFS’, Wayne, Simon, Brenton ‘Dawsie’ and David at crane.

3 July 2000.

Preparing the ground to lay the concrete.

George, Annie, Don, Jimmy and Dan McCaul - on his birthday!

Exquisite rural vista in background of Mt Jagged.

28 August 2000.

Laying mesh over membrane - preparing for laying slab.

Dan McCaul, owner and builder of Alexandrina Cheese Company.

2 August 2000.

All pitching into spread the concrete – hard work!

23 trucks of cement worth over three weeks!

3 August 2000.

Smoothing out the lines on the processing floor.

Our dear friend, Don Milliard, doing the finishing touches at the end of a long and busy day.

3 August 2000.

The slab is dry, lets move in!

The last bit of cement was poured in the Tanker Bay, and Verandah.

The slab was laid – 139.6 metres cubed in 6 days!

10 August 2000.

Krystyna and Dan standing outside in the shed.

Looking at the new pasteurizer imported from New Zealand.

September 2000.

The walls go up on the factory - bondor panel stacked and ready!

5 September 2000.

Look at the old oats paddock, now!

“Waalaa!” All look on with exclamations, “Finished? Doesn’t it look nice?”

End of September 2000.

Flowers boxes planned for summer tourism trade.

A year later, Don Millard, building resumes, putting the finishing touches to the blue planter boxes.

15 August 2001.

Flowers boxes planted for summer visitors to admire!

A few months later, friend and neighbour Verona Walcohope, and resident Gardener has changed the aesthetics with the sprawling native garden.

31 December 2001.

Blessed are the cheese-makers! Life goes on at Mt Jagged.

Dan McCaul is dairy farming, while Krystyna’s takes care of cheesemaking!

17 September 2001.

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Open Weekdays 12-5pm, Weekends 10-4.30pmsp© 2007 Alexandrina Cheese CospSneyd Road, Mt Jagged SAspPhone (08) 8554 9666
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