FAQ About How We Make Our Cheese

Learn all about our cheese and the local milk that we use to make our cheese.

Where does Rosewood Dairy (Renard’s Cheese) get our milk from?
All of the milk used to make our cheeses comes from small, local Door and Kewaunee County family farms. Many of these farms are second and third generation, and have been with Renard’s Cheese since 1961 .
What type of cows do you get the milk from?
90-95% of our milk comes from Holstein cows and the rest of the milk is from Guernsey or Jersey cows.
Are the cows grass fed?
The cows are grass fed as the Wisconsin climate allows. They’re also fed a mixture of wheat and grains to enable them to produce the highest quality milk.
Is the milk hormone-free?
The farms that we get our milk from certify that their milk is free from genetically engineered hormones. Once at our factory, it is tested to confirm that it is free of antibiotics and to ensure it achieves the high-level of quality that we demand.
How much milk does it take to make one pound of cheese?
You may be surprised and the answer might even help justify spending a little more for our handcrafted cheeses. Each pound of cheese requires 10 pounds (or about 5 quarts) of cow’s milk. That’s a lot of milk!!
What kinds of cultures does Renard’s Cheese use when making cheese?
The first stage in making cheese is to ripen the milk. During the ripening process, lactose is converted into lactic acid. Cheese makers use starter cultures to control this ripening process. We use both thermophilic and mesophilic cultures. Which culture we use depends on the type of cheese we are making.
Mesophilic is a non-heat loving culture, and is used for making cheeses that are not heated to more than 102 degrees. This is the most common and is used to make 90% of the varieties of cheeses. Some of these cheeses include soft cheese, blue cheese, feta, farmers, Colby, cheddar, brie and others.
Thermophilic is a heat loving culture and is used to make cheeses that can be heated to 130 degrees. It is used in most Italian cheeses, such as parmesan, provolone, mozzarella, Swiss, Monterey jack, etc.
What makes the cheese yellow? Is there dye in your cheese?

We do not use any chemical dyes. Our coloring comes from annatto, which is a food coloring derived from the seeds of achiote tree. The achiote tree is native to tropical regions from Mexico to Brazil. Annatto is often used to impart a yellow or orange color to foods.