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Goat-milk soap, an all-natural attraction at Logan farmers’ market

October 2nd, 2011 Posted in Arts and Life

By Cathy Morgan

LOGAN – The Cache Valley Gardeners Market has a lot to offer to the local community every Saturday up until October. People are attracted to unique things. Somehow a woman wearing a bonnet and selling soap made from goat milk seems to add something to the market.

Laura Mae Miller has been making her own soap, shampoos, lotions and balms from goat’s milk since 2004. She has been bringing her goods to local farmers markets for three years now. Miller also brings fresh eggs to the market from her family’s home.

The Garland, Utah, resident first became interested in soap when her family realized she was allergic to cows’ milk. They purchased her a goat named Jewel in order to give her the milk she needed. A friend suggested she also make soap from the extra goat’s milk, and Jewel Soap, made from goat’s milk and olive oil, was born.

“I couldn’t use the soaps and things from the store because of allergies, so this has been a huge help,” Miller said. Most store-bought soaps and lotions are full of chemical ingredients, which can make it hard for people with allergies or sensitive skin to find products they can use.

Everything Miller uses in her products is natural. From beeswax that helps add an extra protection to the skin, to essential plant oils, everything in her soap and other products is natural and healthy. She not only uses honey, oatmeal, flowers or lime for scent, but also for their healing capabilities.

USU student Herschel Kelly remarked, “I think it’s unique that she takes advantage of the resources around her to make something useful and she can live off of it.”

Laura Ozios was visiting a recent Saturday market from Salt Lake. “I like Laura’s look and how she packages her products,” she said. “It’s such good idea, what she’s done.”

The process has involved considerable experimentation, Miller says. “Learning to make the soap involved a lot of reading,” she said. “There are a lot of rules to follow and I had a lot of experiments, but I never made something I couldn’t use.”

Some market-goers are sometimes confused by her products: “I actually found bite marks on one of my bars one time, because someone thought it smelled like it was something to eat,” Miller laughed.

But for Laura Mae Miller, this is serious business.

“It’s not just a hobby to me, but it’s also my source of income,” she said.

Miller also sells her products out of a store at her home in the Mennonite community in Garland. She doesn’t sell online because of her religious beliefs, but she does have a mail order catalog if you can’t always make the trip to her place or to the market.

You can visit Laura Mae Miller’s farm at 12270 N. 5200 West in Garland, Utah, 84312, or call 435-257-1822.


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