Cows Come First
T he most significant positive impact we can have for environmental sustainability is making sure our cows are healthy and comfortable so that they can use feed and water most efficiently.
In 2000, when we started milking cows in Kansas, each of our cows averaged 7.6 gallons of milk per day. Today, the average per cow is 9.7 gallons per day. That means more milk from almost the same natural resources.
Our cows produce about 35% more milk than the average dairy cow in the U.S. because we select superior animals, feed them the best diets possible, and keep them comfortable.
Producing More Milk
Milk Produced Per Cow Per Day
More Milk than the Average Dairy Cow
People Caring for Cows
Care for Every Cow, Every Day
Experts such as veterinarians, animal nutritionists and facility technicians augment the skills of our family and co-workers.
The dairies feature barns and outdoor pens developed specifically for cow comfort. Both inside and outside pens are cleaned every day. The cows being milked are kept outside and in “freestall barns” with deep sand for them to lie in and room to roam whenever they want. Cows are cooled in the hot summer months with shade, sprinklers and fans. In the winter, straw is used to keep the cows clean, warm and dry.
The cows’ diets are determined by a nutritionist and monitored daily by our family. Cows are fed a mix of chopped forages, such as alfalfa hay and silage. Grains and a mixture of vitamins and minerals are added to the forages to supply nutrients needed for optimum milk quality and cow health.
How Our Cows Are Milked
Every day, the cows are milked at least twice.
Some cows are milked three times a day. As the cows walk into the “parlor,” people carefully clean and inspect their udders and milk before attaching milking units which gently remove the milk then automatically detach when the cow’s udder is empty.
Watch this video to see the routine our dairy cows go through each day. Once the milk leaves the cow, it remains in a “closed system” to keep it wholesome and cold. State inspectors come to the dairy to make sure all rules and regulations are met.