Beginnings

Our History

From Redwood Hill Farm & Creamery’s early days as a 4-H project to our evolution into a national brand, our calling has always been to produce delicious and nourishing food, treat our goats humanely, and give back to the land. Our founder Jennifer Bice's lifelong dedication to goats began over 50 years ago, when she started raising and showing goats on her family’s dairy farm. Find out what’s shaped us into the company we are today.

1963

Kenneth and Cynthia Bice move their family from urban Los Angeles to the redwoods of Sonoma County, pursuing their dream of going “back to the land.”

1964

Redwood Hill Farm is born. The family buys two acres of land on a previous apple orchard and establishes their homestead, raising ducks, chickens, rabbits, goats, pigs, and sheep.

1966

The Bice children begin raising and showing goats through 4-H. With five or six goats each, they soon find themselves with enough for a herd, and an excess of fresh goat milk.

1966

Jennifer Bice, the oldest of the ten Bice siblings, takes a special interest in raising goats. She is drawn to their sweet, inquisitive, and gregarious personalities, and enjoys teaching them tricks.

1968

The Bices build their first milking parlor and bottling room on the family farm. They begin selling raw goat milk in glass bottles to local health food stores.

1970

Redwood Hill Farm introduces the nation’s first goat milk kefir.

1978

Jennifer Bice and her husband Steven Schack take over the goat dairy with little more than $250 to their names. Guided by the same values as Jennifer’s parents, they expand the business to produce a greater variety of goat milk products and diversify the dairy goat-breeding program.

1980

Raw goat milk feta is the first in a line of artisan cheeses.

1982

Redwood Hill Farm introduces the nation’s first goat milk yogurt. It continues to be the best-selling goat milk yogurt in the U.S. to this day.

1986

Jennifer and Steven win the Premier Breeder Award at the American Dairy Goat Association’s National Show.

1992

Fresh chèvre becomes a best-seller in Redwood Hill Farm’s line of artisan cheeses, as goat cheese begins to enjoy widespread popularity, influenced by the “California cuisine” style of cooking.

1994

Redwood Hill Farm is the first in the U.S. to make a Camembert-style cheese from goat milk. Jennifer names it Camellia, after one of her first Saanen goats.

2000

The Bice siblings, Scott, David, Shelley, and Sharon, rally round to help Jennifer with the rapidly growing business.

2004

The company moves into a state-of-the-art creamery in Sebastopol, four miles south of the original farm.

2005

The original Redwood Hill Farm becomes the first goat dairy in the nation to become Certified Humane®, a rigorous animal welfare certification awarded by Humane Farm Animal Care.

2010

Redwood Hill Farm & Creamery launches its sister brand, Green Valley Organics, the only lactose-free, organic line of real dairy products in the U.S.

2010

The business goes solar. The creamery installs 2,548 solar panels on its roof that provide 85% of its electricity (the rest is powered by other renewable sources like wind and geothermal). The farm installs a solar system that powers the entire operation.

2011

Jennifer Bice is inducted into the American Cheese Society Academy of Cheese as one of the eight pioneers of artisan goat cheese in the U.S.

2015

Redwood Hill Farm & Creamery is acquired by Swiss dairy maker, Emmi. The 108-year old company is majority owned by a cooperative of small-scale dairy farmers in Switzerland who farm between 10 and 50 cows.

2017

The first Jennifer Bice Artisan Dairy/Cheesemaker Grant is awarded to Erika McKenzie-Chapter, head cheesemaker of Pennyroyal Farm. The grant is created with the intention to mentor and support the next generation of cheesemakers in California.
YOUR WORDS

“It does my heart good to be buying amazingly delicious goat products from a company that is Certified Humane.”

– Phyllis, Idaho