On social media, we post a Farm Feature Friday showcasing one of our dedicated North Carolina farmers. Steven Wetmore with LutheRidge Farms is one of those farmers. The #FarmFeatureFriday campaign will run through December 2021 on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. Be sure to tune in each Friday afternoon on social and help show your support for our local farmers!
Meet Steven Wetmore, the 26-year-old dairy farmer from Mount Ulla. His grandfather and uncle began farming in the late 60’s with 10 to 15 cattle. Right out of college, Steven’s grandfather got a job as a herdsman at the Biltmore Estate before moving to manage the herd at our own Piedmont Research Station.
After a few years of experience, he decided he wanted a farm of his own, and thus LutheRidge Farms was born. Steven grew up on the farm and fell in love with the dairy industry at a young age. “I’ve been milking cows and helping around the farm since I was about ten years old,” he said, “and I’ve never wanted to do anything else.”
Now operating as the manager of LutheRidge Farms, Steven manages 300 acres, 160 cows total, with about 70 of them being dairy cows, specifically Jerseys. “The best part of my job is waking up and starting each day by feeding and milking the cows,” Steven says, “then I feed raw milk to the baby calves and clean and bed the stalls. By the time that is all done, we usually have about two hours before it’s time to do it all again.” He spends five hours in the milking parlor total each day. “It is very rewarding to watch a calf grow and develop under your care,” he said.
The farm pasteurizes their own milk and works with Siano Mozzarella in Charlotte and Boxcar Cheese in Raleigh to provide high protein cheese around the state. “Dairy farming is not easy because every day, it seems, you have to make a decision that will effect you for the next 365 days,” Steven says, “so if you are going to do it, you have to love it! Always stay positive because despite the hard moments, it is extremely rewarding.”