Your Farm

DFA’s Young Cooperator (YC) program was designed to help develop the next generation of dairy leaders and serve as an outlet for young farmers to network with their peers. This is what led Sean Kelley from Stevinson, Calif., to join the program earlier this year.

“I got involved with YCs as a way to meet more people within the same industry,” he says. “I did not grow up in Stevinson, and being a transplant to a small town, I decided to take advantage of every possible opportunity to...

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The farmland that Kyle Hayes Dairy sits on in Quitman, Texas, has not only rich soil, but a rich history that dates back to the Civil War. While the land is old, Kyle has implemented modern technology on the dairy including a new calf-raising facility and selective breeding that ensures quality milk reaches consumers.

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Generations of Hayes farmers.

“My grandfather bought land in Wood County after returning from the Civil War, working as a farmer, a blacksmith and a preacher....

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Tejo Willemsen
Willemsen Dairy
Frankton, Ind.

Fourth-generation farmer Tejo Willemsen has a broad perspective of the dairy industry. As a farmer, immigrant, Emerging Leader and the owner of his own milk hauling business, Willemsen has experience with all different aspects of the industry — something he says he hopes to bring to Cooperative and industry leadership roles.

Recently elected to serve on the National Dairy Promotion and Research Board and the United Dairy...

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Wisconsin family spends generations improving and expanding its herd

Progress has always been a focus for Fertile Ridge Dairy.

Since third-generation farmer Gary Sutter’s grandfather purchased the Mount Horeb, Wis., dairy in 1903, the farm has established a pattern of slow and steady growth, updating facilities and expanding their herd over time. 

“This isn’t something new that’s been done just in the last 10 years,” Sutter says. “We’ve always been expanding.”...

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