LIMESTONE TOWNSHIP, UNION COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — The pandemic has forced many mom-and-pop shops to close their doors, but that isn’t the case for one family farm here in Union County.
With the pump of a pedal, you get chocolate milk. But it isn’t as easy as it sounds.
“Oh my gosh, I don’t even know how many farms have been lost in Pennsylvania alone. Let alone our own county,” said Jennifer Mapes, Mapes Farm Fresh, LLC.
Eyewitness News visited Mapes Family Farm back in July when Jennifer Mapes said in a last-ditch effort to save her dairy farm she wanted to begin processing and bottling her own cows’ milk.
In the last two months, two nearby dairy farms in Union County sold their cows and shut their doors.
Mapes says she’s grateful to not fall under the same fate
“We were at a breaking point. We either had to sell the farm or do something to make it continue to grow,” Mapes explained.
Now, in December her dream has become a reality and a business-saver.
“We’re extremely blessed and thankful we kept at it and I think the community is very excited too and very thankful we kept at it too,” Mapes said.
Eyewitness News got a behind-the-scenes look at how the milk’s made.
From the cow to the bottle their first day opening the store was not only a monumental occasion but an emotional one.
“In the midst of processing, my dad says ‘today would’ve been my dad’s 100 birthday.’ his dad started this farm. They bought it in 1955. He and my gram started it and passed the love of agriculture down to us,” Mapes said.
A day this family will never forget.
The day they saved a farm that has been in the Mapes family for generations.