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David Sparks Ph.d Raising Goats
by David Sparks Ph.d, click here for bio

Program: Idaho Ag Today
Date: September 18, 2018

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I found a story that inspires, symbolizes entrepreneurialism at the highest level and just leaves you with a great feeling. Debra Jantzi owns a raw and pasteurized goat dairy in the Treasure Valley of western Idaho. With faith and determination, she and her nine children established Treasured Sunrise Acres from the ground up. Here to tell us more is Polly Hoyt, public relations and outreach specialist for the Idaho state office of the Farm service agency who, by the way, helped to fund this exciting new venture.

From 4-H to Farming

Before the dairy, the Jantzi kids were involved with their local 4-H, where they learned first-hand about raising and marketing goats. Each one had their own small goat herd and were responsible for keeping the records on feeding, breeding, and marketing.

The oldest daughter came up with the idea to open their own certified raw goat dairy. To get them started, a retired dairyman leased his farm to the Jantzi family and took them under his wing. Treasured Sunrise Acres soon became the first certified Grade A raw goat dairy in Idaho.

Becoming an Owner

When Debra and the children decided it was time to buy a dairy of their own, they discovered farm ownership loans available through USDA’s Farm Service Agency. Working with their local USDA service center, they took out a farm ownership loan to help purchase a former dairy farm. The Jantzi family also obtained a loan to help with building improvements.

“FSA has been a life saver for us. We wanted to grow and could not on our own,” Debra said. “This family-owned dairy has provided my children a lifestyle where they can be together, develop their skills, and have fun. The operation is fluid, constantly changing and adapting.”

Dedicated to Farming

Treasured Sunrise Acres is now home to 158 goats that graze on irrigated pastures. The Jantzi family also provide their goats with alfalfa and their own formulated grain mix which is tested, certified, and licensed. Treasured Sunrise Acres also sells the all-natural feed line to other


producers. The Jantzis also started a line of pasteurized milk and sells goats to other customers who want goats for breeding or as pets.

Debra encourages her children to tap into their strengths, which has contributed to the diversity of the business. Between milking, feeding, breeding, and marketing, each family member has a different role in the operation.

“Debra and her kids are very dedicated,” said Shawna Anderson, farm loan manager with the Farm Service Agency in Caldwell, Idaho. “They were able to market their goat milk at a perfect time, finding a niche market that has held strong with the continued growth in the area.”


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