My day out to the Kerr Dairy started like most school days. Hectic! Missing shoe, displaced homework, can’t decide on the perfect snack, fight over best seat in the car and that was all before 8:00AM. Then editing some photos, responding to emails, phone calls and a few errands. I knew it would take me about 40 minutes to get out to there. I still was not 100% sure I would make it on time. But driving out there with the nice cool breeze and radio blaring melted away all the stress. One more reason I love Arizona is that we have over 100 Dairy Farms with over 190,000 cows. 98% of those are family owned and operated. That is pretty impressive.
Once I arrived at Kerr Dairy I was greeted with smiling happy faces. I just knew it was going to be a great day. The tour started on a high note when we learned a baby calf had been born and we headed over to the other side of the Dairy to take a look.
During our time out with the Pregnant cows we learned about the cow nutritionists who create healthy eating plans for cows, depending on their different needs.
Then we headed to the milking area. We received a wealth of information about how technology has improved the milking process and how much more dairymen now know about lactation needs of cows than they have in years past. I was interested to learn than when cows get sick and are on antibiotics, they are removed from the heard until all antibiotics are out of their system. We also learned that cows in Arizona are not treated with artificial hormones.
Next we headed to the nursery to see some calves. The care and keeping of so many cows must be a huge undertaking. The dairy farmer has to keep a close eye on the young ones to make sure they are healthy and not at risk. I have to admit these guys were pretty darn cute.
We looked at some more cows, food and the poor dairy farmer answered more questions that I can even think of right now. But all with a smile and total passion for his chosen profession. Even if he was born into it on this multi generational dairy farm. We ended with lunch and while it was a cool day, summers in Arizona can get really hot. But even that question was answered as we found out Arizona dairy farms are equipped with Saudi Barns. These are equipped with fans and misters along with shade to keep the cows cooler.
I highly recommend for anyone to do a Dairy Farm tour in their area. I think it’s great to see where our milk comes from, meet the local farmers and get to know what they are all about. Kerr Dairy was fantastic, they had very great detailed information and they were just as excited to host us as we were to be there. A big thanks to them for the hospitality. I also want to thank The Dairy Council of AZ for connecting our group with Kerr Dairy.
To see more photos of my visit and some of the goodies I took home, check out my Facebook Page and Instagram Feed.
Have you visited a local farmer recently? I would love to hear what you thought.
Disclaimer: I was provided the opportunity to visit this farm with the Diary Council of AZ through a campaign with Blended Extended. All opinions are my own.