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A passion for yogurt - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

A passion for yogurt

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In the North East Kingdom, a place known for remote natural beauty, there's a farm that stands out.

"We bought this land in 1976 and started making yogurt on our kitchen stove in 1979," said Jack Lazor of Butterworks Farm, Vermont's original organic dairy. "In the late 60's, dissatisfied with where our culture was going and decided we'd do our own things -- get close to the earth."

Reporter Gina Bullard: "So you're hippies?"

Jack Lazor: "Yes, we're hippies. Still are really."

Jack and Anne Lazor's hippy dreams have come true. They own Butterworks Farm in Westfield. It's a 35 year-old, family run company and it's secret to success -- Jersey Cows.  Their milk is used to make several dairy products including the one they're most known for -- yogurt.

"They have a high protein milk ideal for making yogurt because we don't have to add dry milk or pectin or anything other dairies have to add," Anne Lazor said.

"Basically pasteurize milk to 180, cool it back down to 105, add culture -- which is yogurt -- and incubate for 3-4 hours and then cool it,"

From that process they make five varieties -- plain, nonfat lemon, nonfat vanilla, Jersey whole milk, and maple -- varieties that are thick and hold their shape on the spoon.

In a week, Butterworks Farm sells between five and seven thousand 32 ounce quarts. They ship to stores all over the Northeast, but sell 60-percent of their products in Vermont.   

"The greatest thing is the people who live here want to eat local food and support local producers more and more," Jack Lazor said.

For example -- at City Market in Burlington, in one week they sell 600 quarts. That is more then they sell at 28 chains of the organic grocery store, Whole Foods, across the U.S.

Anne and Jack's allegiance to Vermont comes through in every bite. They don't use sugar to sweeten it up -- only Vermont maple syrup.

Reporter Gina Bullard: "So what's the difference between this and a Yoplait Yogurt?"

Jack Lazor: "It's not stirred."

And in case you didn't know -- which I didn't -- there's a right and wrong way to eat yogurt. Don't set it down too hard or stir it -- it will loose it's body and get acidic.

"I tell people, why don't you stir it in your mouth?" Lazor said.

Lazor also recommends eating an even layer across and not scooping from the middle. "If you eat it level, the whey will stay in the yogurt," Lazor said.

Reporter Gina Bullard: "Is that the watery stuff?"

"That's the whey!" Lazor said. "You have to be kind to it. You're talking to somebody who -- my life is yogurt."

Two people passionate about their creamy concoction -- original, organic and Made In Vermont.

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