Vanessa Kiely O’Connor is a dairy farmer who exudes passion and all of the values that make great Kerrygold Irish butter.
Vanessa provides milk to make Kerrygold butter from her best-in-class farm where her herd receives excellent care and the land is well tended to. It's this passion, care and love that makes Kerrygold butter as rich and golden as it is.
Vanessa receives a visit from Gerry Coonan, a retail butter procurement manager for Kerrygold with over 40 years’ experience, his commitment means that Kerrygold's 14,000 co-op members can focus on producing excellent grass-fed milk. Gerry looks after all of the butter logistics, so the great quality of Kerrygold can to be enjoyed locally, around the country and all over the world.
Vanessa explains how Kerrygold farmers' commitment goes beyond just producing great milk. They have an important bond with the land and with the animals:
"We are care-takers, through the generations. My husband David's grandfather bought this place in 1934. From the soil to the grass, it's a huge responsibility for me to make sure that's right for the cows. Once they're happy, I'm happy."
Gerry, who is responsible for all of the Kerrygold butter that's shipped throughout the world, pays Vanessa a visit to explore the farm and learn more about the passion and commitment that goes into what she does.
"We produce our milk off grass in Ireland which is not the norm throughout the world. We are very lucky to have the greenest dairyland," Gerry explains.
He also points out how "tradition is very important. These farms are family farms.
"Something that we don't see in many parts of the world: our butter has this creamy golden colour. The taste has always been pure. It's as natural as the day my great grandfather made it. It's so beautiful."
"Because of our climate, we can farm this way. And we have farmed this way for generations. It's what we do best," Vanessa adds.
"David's grandparents would have been farming to produce butter for themselves. David's parents would have produced butter to feed the whole of Ireland. Now that we're farming, we're actually producing butter that's being sent all over the world. It's a lovely cycle of life."
Irish-produced Kerrygold butter is really something to be proud of, and that's why it's shipped to be enjoyed by families all around the world. And that's the 'Kerrygold difference'!