‘As close as you can get to milking a cow’

By Chris Cornford Nov 9, 2020

The Island’s Lord-Lieutenant Susie Sheldon has got well used to being asked to open things – but it was a first for her on Wednesday (Nov 4) when she went along to Crocker’s Farm to open a self-service milk vending machine.

The new venture by the family-run farm provides delicious freshly pasteurised milk from their herd of pedigree Holstein Friesians though a self-service vending machine located along Cowes Road opposite the Isle of Wight County Showground, at the end of the farm lane.
Mrs Sheldon said: “It’s a really great project and it looks fantastic. You pay your money, push the button and it fills up a reusable bottle with milk. It’s as close as you can get to milking the cow yourself – and much less messy.”

Lucy Collis, daughter of farmers Paul and Mary Bradley said: “During these testing times of Covid-19 it has become clearer that people want local produce direct from the farmer, to reduce food miles, to reduce plastic packaging and to know and learn where their food is coming from. So, having the environment and circumstances we currently live in change dramatically, we decided to invest and install a machine that is designed and built in the UK.

“All our glass bottles have our unique design on and are available to purchase on site at £2, and they are reusable and dishwasher friendly. Alongside our whole milk, gently pasteurised so the cream still rises to the top, you can also choose a delicious milkshake flavour from chocolate, banana, strawberry and vanilla which we had great fun taste tasting for you.”
The machines are all Covid friendly with contactless card payments and hand sanitizer is provided. Covid restrictions apply when you enter the hut.
Lucy added: “We have enjoyed the challenge of this venture and have used Island trades and friends, in building up to final preparations for opening. We are equally excited to welcome the Island’s Lord- Lieutenant to officially open ‘Cowes Milk’ self-service vending machine.

“A big thank you to Natural Enterprise and the Isle of Wight Rural Fund. Without their support this may not have become reality.”
You can find out more and give feedback on their website, cowesmilkiow.co.uk or their Facebook and Instagram pages.