La Ferme de la Brunie

Périgord cheese and milk

by Bert Schwarz

La ferme de la Brunie is located in the Dordogne, the Périgord Noir, near Sarlat-la-Canéda. In the village of Saint-Nathalène, you can go by car towards the gardens of Erignac, you gotta stay cool (remark for strangers) and follow the signs "Vente de Lait et Produits fermiers". Once there are no more signs any more you have actually arrived right in the middle of the fields next to a farm. You now have successfully come across the dairy farm.

Story, Camera, Edit : Bert Schwarz

© travel-magazine TV 2020

Ferme de La Brunie has a herd of Montbéliarde cows, the heritage of four generations.

The milk produced is labelled as «Bleu Blanc Coeur». The milking is carried out by a robot, which ensures the well-being of the animals. After the milking, which is individually initiated by the cow, a treat is served. "Stupid cow" is a term that certainly does not fit the animals, because - very humanly - if the cows want to outwit the robot, they go into the milking box, the computer knows of course, because of the transponder built into the collar of the cow, that it is not yet her turn again and then refuses the treat very much to the disappointment of the animal. A part of the collected milk is directly processed on the farm.

Florian © Bert Schwarz
Florian © Bert Schwarz

The milking robot was put into operation in 2015. It has made it possible to abolish the morning and evening milking service 365 days a year and to ensure the well-being of the animals. The cows go to the robot whenever they want, at any time of the day or night. The milking intervals are at least 6 hours and at most 12 hours, depending on the lactation and gestation stage.

Florian © Bert Schwarz
Florian © Bert Schwarz

During identification by the transponder, other information is also collected, such as rumination, movement and temperature of the cow. This ensures that a cow's state of health is always known on the farm so that intervention can be carried out earlier in case of illness. Thanks to this technique, the farmer can apply homeopathic medicine. Antibiotics have not been given for 2 years.

Aside from milk production, cheese is also produced and sold directly in the farm store. Due to the panda disease, we did not come at the right time, but we have already arranged for further recordings next year.