It was shortly after our respective graduations from Clemson University that we first considered the idea of having our own dairy. Patrick and Kent were working different jobs in the dairy industry and wanted to go into business for themselves. At one time, Patrick’s family had an operational family dairy farm, and in 2010 on these same 50 acres of land, we started our dairy business. Patrick oversaw the business side of the dairy operation, while Kent handled the responsibility of herd management, including the day-to-day milking operations.
After a few years, the small dairy was at a crossroads. The tough economic climate of the industry required expansion into a larger dairy or adding value to the milk we were producing. We knew how to expand the dairy, but were intrigued by the alternative of keeping our herd small where our cows are individuals and not just numbers.
After conversations with many people, we realized the unmet demand for value-added artisan dairy products in our area. Consumers frequently asked about local dairy products, especially yogurts, artisanal cheeses, and flavored butters, and we recognized that individuals as well as restaurants and chefs desire locally produced, small batch, minimally processed dairy products, but had very few options.
As we looked into the possibility of supplying products to meet this type of demand, our longtime friend and fellow Clemson alum, Josh Brooks joined us and we began discussing the business and financing aspects of our idea. After winning a USDA Value-Added Producer Planning Grant, we dedicated ourselves to making our dream a reality and Lowcountry Creamery was born. We began experimenting in early 2015 and launched sales in May of that year.
We desire to impact our local community not only through the sale of quality dairy products, but also by creating jobs, educating and leading the way in linking small farmers to opportunities available through other entities.