Albert Straus is an advocate for organic, non-GMO dairy production, environmental stewardship, and family farms. The Straus Dairy Farm became the first certified organic dairy farm west of the Mississippi River, which has led the way for many other dairy farms in California to follow suit and convert to organic. About 85% of the dairy farms in Marin and Sonoma Counties are now certified organic.
Straus Family Creamery, which Albert Straus founded in 1994, was the first 100% certified organic creamery in the United States. Its mission is to help sustain family farms in Marin and Sonoma Counties by providing high quality, minimally processed organic dairy products, and to support family farming and revitalize rural communities everywhere through advocacy and education.
On the dairy farm, Albert Straus has been a leader in sustainable farming practices, with the aim of creating a viable model for organic dairy farms. These initiatives include a methane digester, which converts dairy waste into renewable energy; a carbon farming program, designed to measure and optimize carbon capture; and an extensive water-reuse system, which recycles wastewater from the creamery.
In July 2017, Albert launched the world’s first full-scale electric feed truck—powered by cow manure. This electric feed truck is the next step in Albert’s quest to show that his organic dairy farm can be carbon positive, using agriculture as a solution to reversing climate change.
In 2005, after detecting GMO contamination in his certified organic feeds, Albert Straus developed and implemented a GMO testing and verification program, which was crucial to preserving the organic integrity of his milk. When the Non-GMO Project emerged in 2010, Straus Family Creamery became the first creamery in the U.S to be verified. Every source of feed for cows on the Straus Dairy Farm and the eight other local, organic family farms who provide milk to the creamery is tested for GMOs and verified GMO-free.