“There were a lot of people that thought this wouldn’t work. That there was no way it was going to work…and we’ve made it work.” - Shauna Garza
A Family Owned and Operated Business
Shauna Garza is one of the cheese makers at TMK Creamery located in Canby, Oregon. As a family owned and operated business, Shauna and her family work very hard to maintain a high quality creamery. Shauna describes that her roles include: overseeing production in the plant, processing weekly orders, overseeing sanitation, always making sure they are aligned with state and federal regulations, assisting with any trainings, attending events and most importantly, making their wonderful cheese. Shauna describes that her favorite part about working at TMK Creamery is being able to work with her family on a day to day basis. In addition to being able to work with her family, Shauna finds the educational aspect of TMK very rewarding where she is able to teach the public about where their cheese is coming from. It is important for Shauna and her family to teach people about what a creamery is, how their cheese is processed and made, and most importantly, how the cows are cared for.
What makes TMK run so smoothly is the teamwork between Shauna and her two brothers, Todd and Marc Koch. Shauna, Todd, and Marc all offer different expertise and backgrounds which serve as the necessary ingredients that create a successful family operated creamery. The collaboration of new ideas between the three siblings has been the foundation of TMK with communication being the most important aspect. Providing the highest quality care for their animals and making the highest quality products is a mutual goal that the three siblings share. Being a family owned and operated small business with an emphasis on the educational aspect of their cows and products is what makes TMK Creamery unique.
Silver Medal Garlic Dill Cheese Curds
The garlic dill cheese curds, a favorite at TMK, recently received a silver medal from the 2019 World Cheese Awards that were held in Italy. Shauna humbly describes this experience as amazing and overwhelming, especially since she only started making cheese in 2017. The garlic dill cheese curds were one of the very first recipes that TMK developed. Shauna explained that typically garlic and dill alone are not preferred, however, combining the two creates a delicious contrast. What makes their garlic dill cheese curds so tasty is their freshness. Curds are made a couple times a week at TMK, so generally when people are buying and eating them, they are only one or two days old at most.What has driven Shauna, Todd and Marc in regard to their cheese curds is the preferences of the public; that is another mutual goal they all share. Providing samples and tasters to the public is an important aspect in what they choose to create and sell. Being open to feedback is how the garlic dill cheese curds were created.
Dedication and Love
What a lot of people don’t realize about Shauna, Todd and Marc is just how much love, dedication and hard-work they put into running TMK Creamery. With each one of them having separate jobs and only working part time at the creamery, it is clear just how much love goes into making their products.
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Written by, Megan Campbell, TMK Creamery Social Media Team Member