Thursday, June 13, 2013

Dairy Fun!

Since June is Dairy Month, one of our local dairies held a tour of their facility tonight.  We thought it would be fun to head over there and see their Dairy.  The tour was held at Jones Family Dairy Farm which is located east of Fostoria, Iowa.

Jones Dairy milks about 700 Jersey cows per day.  The cows are milked in three different shifts.  The shifts each take about 6.5 hours to complete.  Each cow gives about 7 gallons of milk per day.

As each cow comes into the milking parlor, their tag is read by the computer, and the tag number displays on the digital screen as they are being milked.  Each cow's daily milk production is recorded in the computer.  They can tell how much milk each cow gave at each milking shift every day.

The cows are very relaxed and calm as they come into the milking parlor.  Each cow is cleaned before and after milking.  This is both for the cleanliness of the milk product and for the well being of the cow.  The fresh milk is transferred into a holding tank.  On the way to the holding tank, the milk is cooled by using cool ground water.  The milk is cooled by the water until it reaches about 55 degrees before going to the holding tank to be cooled the rest of the way to 37 degrees.  The water used to cool the milk is then recycled to drinking water for the cows.  The cows prefer the warmer water over the cool water to drink.

After milking, the cows are returned to a free stall barn where they have feed and water in front of them 24 hours a day.  They have clean bedding to lay on in the barn as well.

It was a very interesting tour tonight.  Jones Dairy did a nice job of showcasing their farm and family business.  I commend the Jones Family for their time and the effort given in caring for their cows. If you get a chance, please "like" their Facebook page at Jones Dairy and also check out their website:


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