This is the type of business we should be supporting and encouraging.

This is a nice story about a a couple of brothers who have tapped back into what was once popular, and successful. We here would sure as heck support a dairy like this if it was available here. I know this is a trend that is slowly coming back. This is how our milk was delivered when I was a kid. From Parade Magazine.

Our Towns:
Return of the Milkman!

by Drew Kerr
The Post-Star

Three times a week, in the dim light and cool air of a Saratoga County morning, Jan and Jeff King load 300 gallons of milk into a refrigerated truck. Winding their way through suburban culs-de-sac, down country roads, and along village streets, they bring glass-bottled, farm-fresh milk to more than 150 homes surrounding their family’s century-old dairy farm in upstate New York.

Their grandfather, Edgar, and father, Ed, traveled the same route for decades before stopping in 1961. Nearly 50 years later, Jan and Jeff, 42 and 39 respectively, are back on the road.

By mid-morning, the brothers will return to the farm with a slew of empty bottles ready to be cleaned and refilled. Piling the extra work on top of the daily demands of caring for 800 purebred Holstein cows isn’t easy. But reviving the home-delivery service, the brothers say, is a dream fulfilled.

Jeff and Jan grew up listening to tales from their granddad’s era—stories of people who would leave their doors open and ask him to put the milk in their refrigerators; of customers who would invite him inside for fresh blueberry muffins; of the woman who quickly mended his ripped pants one time as he stood, mortified, behind a closed door. Even the old bottles lying around the house seemed to be goading the two back onto the route.

After a lot of requests from neighbors for fresh milk—and some careful consideration—the Kings bought an old truck, plastered their name on the side, and began taking orders. Their first delivery took place this spring, exactly 49 years after their father took the dairy’s army-surplus truck out one last time.

“I remember putting that bottle down on the doorstep and just thinking how neat it was that we were doing this again,” says a baby-faced Jan, who has spent his entire life on the farm.

Customers, too, are glad to have the milkmen back.

In the 1940s, Laddie Zwijacz’s family took two quarts of milk a week from the King dairy. Each bottle cost 10 cents and had a three-inch layer of cream on top. “This is what real milk tastes like, not the water you get in stores,” Zwijacz, 78, says of the Kings’ current vintage. “ There’s a world of difference.”

Kathleen Quinn, whose grandfather was a milkman, gets four gallons each week. While she says she “can’t deny that nostalgia is part of the appeal,” Quinn also has practical matters to tend to: She makes her own yogurt and cheese and has three small children. “There’d better be some chocolate milk in there,” she jokes with Jeff when he arrives at the door, a wire container full of half-gallon bottles in each hand. “I’ll have a lot to answer for if there’s not.”

Comments like that make the King brothers smile. “We have people telling us they love our product,” says Jeff, a father of three. “We’ve never had that kind of feedback before.” Most dairy farmers see their milk carted away by tanker truck and mixed with other dairies’ milk—the Kings’ reaches many customers within 24 hours of milking.

“People really appreciate knowing where their food is coming from,” Jan notes. And he’s looking forward to making the rounds someday with his son, now 5. “It will be great when he can ride with me on my route,” he says, “just like my father did with his father.”

Drew Kerr is a reporter for The Post-Star , which serves the Lake George–Saratoga region of New York.

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