Monday, July 26, 2010

Dryden dairy farmers reflect on switch to organic

Jerry Dell Farm made the switch from conventional to organic methods over the past decade, and the family reports improvements in their own quality of life, as well as the cows' lives.

In the Ithaca Journal, reporter Aaron Munzer writes, "Faced with sick animals and a dire financial situation as the price for conventionally farmed milk dropped and expenses shot up, in the spring of 1998 the Shermans decided to go back to dairy farming as Vaughn's father Jerry had done it in the 1950s -- when the animals were grazed out on pasture, naturally."  

Farmer Vaughn Sherman says that although the milk production has dropped by half, illnesses among the cows has virtually vanished, cows live twice as long, farm income has improved, and number of hours worked has declined.

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