Farmer Friday: Thank You Note
Dear Annabelle, Isabelle, Daisy, Milkyway, Cookies & Cream, Buttercup, and all of the rest of my girls,
I want to start off by saying thank you. Thank you for being an important part of my herd. Words can’t describe my unconditional love for each and every one of you. Although I may be frustrated with the skid-steer breaking down, or somebody not putting the drill back in the right spot, I sincerely appreciate that you are happy to see me every morning at 5am. The success of my farm begins with you, and I’m happy to cater to your everyday needs. I am happy to hire a nutritionist, veterinarian, and hoof trimer to keep you in tip-top shape.
Annabelle, my favorite girl, I love that you keep me company on our way down to the milking parlor each morning. I appreciate that you wait for me to finish scraping stalls before we make our trek to the milking parlor. I look forward to our walks together each and every day. If I’m having a rough morning, it’s wonderful how understanding you are. Thank you for keeping me company on the days everyone else is running from me.
Thank you for your patience. When we have visitors, you understand that you are an important part of our community. You let our young visitors pet you, and understand when they are rambunctious. I’m not sure you realize the positive impact that you have on our community.
Most importantly, thank you for producing the best quality milk possible. I appreciate that your healthiness and happiness make our family and our Co-op, successful. Without you lovely ladies we wouldn’t be able to make award-winning Cabot Naturally Aged Cheddar Cheese.
~Allison Akins, Five Mile Farm
Did You Know?
Many farmers hire a nutritionist to produce a TMR (total mixed ration) formula for the farm’s feeder. The formula is a recipe for the cow’s meal each day. Cows have different nutritional needs depending on their age, and also whether they are pregnant or just gave birth.
Farmers hire a veterinarian for overall “herd health”. Several times a month, vets will visit the farm to check for pregnancies using an ultrasound, make sure the calves are healthy and trouble-shoot any other herd problems. A hoof trimmer is also hired by many farmers to maintain “herd health”.
Twice a year, cows’ hoofs need to be checked and trimmed – the cows love “Spa Day”. A cow produces about 9 gallons of milk each day, and it takes a gallon of milk to make a pound of cheese. That means each Cabot cow produces 3,285 pounds of award winning cheese every year!
Allison Akins reports on anything and everything farming. By being a part of the seventh generation of her family farm, Five Mile Farm, she hopes to share her love and passion for agriculture with everyone in the Cabot community. She is currently a senior at Cortland State in New York and Allison is unsure of her future plans, so for now she is enjoying her summer internship with Cabot and enjoying the beautiful Vermont scenery.