Recycling on a Dairy Farm


To read more about this dairy farm, check out the accompanying article.

1. Feed Production

They grow the food that feeds the cows on 1,200 acres of their own cropland and they purchase crops from farmers with another 1,000 acres.

2. Taking Care of the Girls

The water that the cows drink was first used to cool the milk after it was collected. The milk is cooled immediately to halt or slow bacteria. This is done in addition to pasteurizing. 

The bedding they use is a mix of dried fibrous manure solids mixed with sawdust and is healthier for the cows. The portion of sawdust to solids for bedding is generally less than 10% sawdust. There is less dust and they found fewer instances of mastitis and other problems.

3. Manure is Produced

The manure is scraped automatically in aisles between the resting and the feeding shelves.

4. Manure is Processed

The manure is first pumped into a manure solids separator, where it separates the fibrous manure solids from the liquid. The liquid is pumped and stored in the lagoon. The solids are dried and mixed with sawdust to be used as bedding. 

5. Spread onto Crops

The liquid manure is stored and spread onto crops at exactly the time the crops need the nutrients when soil and weather conditions are right and the crops can use the nutrients quickly.