Member of Distinction: Mideast Area — Tubergen Dairy Farm

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Representing DFA's Mideast Area, the Tubergen family, owners of Tubergen Dairy Farm located in Ionia, Mich., has been named a 2015 Member of Distinction.

Dennis and Doris Tubergen started their dairy more than 30 years ago and operate today with three of their children, Kurt and Todd Tubergen and Amber Alexander. The family adheres to rigorous standards in all facets of the operation — from the double-12 herringbone parlor to the comfort and nutritional needs of their cows.

The focus on high standards resulted in a platinum designation for Tubergen Dairy Farm in the 2013 National Dairy Quality Awards.

“The 2013 NDQA Award is probably for myself and for the dairy one of our biggest accomplishments,” Todd said. “Not only the procedures that are done in the milking parlor but those that are following throughout the operation allowed us to win this award.”

In the barns, bedding material consists of sand, which contributes to healthier cows and better milk. To achieve more efficiency in the farm’s waste management system, the family invested in a separation machine that recovers 95 percent of the sand, resulting in a clean product that is recycled as bedding.

Raising a family and tending to the needs of the herd can be challenging, but Dennis said he would not follow a different career path.

“I always did like working with cows and the field work,” he said, “and over 30 years, it was nice to watch our kids grow up, and it’s really gratifying to see them come back to the farm.”

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