In 2005 Mattieu Spruit, together with his wife Tamara Spruit, took over the ‘De Spruithove’ farm from his parents. After over 40 years of cheesemaking at Spruithoeve they thought it was time that Mattieu took over the business. A small detail: he still had to learn the craft. Indeed, Tamara had never done anything like it. The first six weeks Tamara learnt the craft from her father-in-law. Then he went on holiday and Mattieu and Tamara had to fend for themselves. They admit that the first years were difficult, but by now, many years later, they have found their own way. In 2020 they even managed to win the Den Besten Award cum laude!
Initially, Mattieu was primarily concerned with the dairy cattle and pigs. He was not really into cheesemaking. But Tamara was interested. So they made some changes. In 2011 Mattieu and Tamara started their cheese dairy, and made cheese six days a week. This was very intensive and it was impossible to continue like this for years. So something had to change. The solution proved to be a larger cheese dairy. The milk could now be stored longer and that meant that they only had to make cheeses for three days a week. And they still do that with much love and passion.
Today, they have 100 dairy cows. The cows are a crossbreed of Holsteiner and Fleckvieh cows. Being a crossbreed makes them a stronger race. Before, there were more health problems among the cows, but thanks to the crossing this has much improved. In addition, Mattieu indicates that it is important to milk cleanly and to monitor the health of the udders. The feed is also watched carefully. This implies: simple fudder, without to many by-products. They are also out in the open for the major part of the year. Mattieu and Tamara’s cows must give tasty milk and produce good protein in the first place. This produces tasty, smooth cheese. The result is wonderful raw-milk farm cheeses with a creamy and characteristic taste.
Our Oudeland piquant matured farmstead cheese and the Erfgoed (Heritage) cheeses Erfgoed Stelling 603 and Erfgoed Stelling 606 are made on Spruithoeve. The latter was proclaimed best cheese of the Netherlands at the Cum Laude Awards! This is of course a great achievement, and we are very happy that we have this cheese in our assortment.
For more information about De Spruithoeve, visit their Facebook page.