They’ve milked dairy cows since 1943. But this long-time Arizona farm family began milking sheep just three years ago and had to make a few adjustments, certainly converting to a two-teat milking cluster claw assembly from the traditional four-teat cluster. It’s an “udderly” fascinating transition that we got to talk about on KTAR’s Rosie on the House this last Saturday.

Paul Rovey, owner/operator of Ponderovey Dairy, founded more than seven decades ago by his father Emil, was our featured guest during the 8:00 am “Farm Fresh” hour. Rovey’s father, Emil, purchased the farm in Glendale during a time when this Arizona city was truly out in farm and ranch country.

The Rovey Family

Today, the dairy is run by the second and third generation of Roveys: Paul, his wife, Deborah, and their five children. If you visit their dairy on Northern Avenue between 75 th and 83 rd avenues, you’ll find their traditional herd of Jersey (brown) cows. Any Rovey you talk to will tell you about their commitment to producing safe, high-quality milk that includes a commitment to caring for their animals and land which happens to include Watusis and more. And, of course, now sheep.

"The transition to milking sheep was fairly straight forward," says owner Paul Rovey. "The high standards of quality nutrition still apply and the humane care for our sheep are all part of our standard operating procedures. That's a common practice among all our dairies across the United States."

Rovey Family Farms artisan sheep cheese comes in a variety of flavors. If you try it, you’ll notice an extra creamy quality to their sheep cheese. And, for individuals lactose intolerant, many find they can enjoy sheep cheese without the typical symptoms.

In the production of hard cheeses, the lactose is discarded in the whey (why someone may find they can eat a hard cheese), but not in soft cheese. But all types of sheep cheese, the soft or hard cheeses, already are lactose-free.

Sheep milk is also recommended for those suffering from eczema because of the high zinc content.

Our Saturday morning on Rosie on the House was full of all sorts of wonderful information about Rovey Family Farms, sheep cheese and where you can find this fresh, local artisan cheese.


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