Fertile Ridge Dairy is home to approximately 650 dairy cattle. Most of our cows are Holsteins, though not all are the black and white kind. We also have Red & White Holsteins and a few Jersey cattle. These gentle animals work hard, around the clock, to covert nutrients in the feed into fresh, wholesome milk.
Each cow on the farm consumes more than 110 pounds of feed and drinks about 25 to 50 gallons of water every day! Using these nutrients, they produce an average of 90 pounds of milk (10 to 11 gallons) per cow per day.
Each gallon of whole milk produced contains approximately 3.5% butterfat and 3.0% protein. Each cow is milked three times per day, which takes about 4-5 minutes at each milking.
When not being milked, our cows like to keep it simple” by doing the things they naturally want to do: eating, sleeping, resting, and grooming. Creatures of habit, they repeat this process around the clock.
This year, cows at Fertile Ridge Dairy will produce more 21 million pounds of milk that contains roughly 747,000 pounds of butterfat and 640,575 pounds of protein. If used in full for only one purpose, an annual supply of Fertile Ridge Dairy’s milk could produce more than:
- 2.1 million pounds of cheese
- 1.4 million pounds of whey protein
- 1.8 million gallons of ice cream
- 5.4 million sticks of butter
- 2.3 million gallons of 1% bottled milk
- An annual supply of bottled milk to more than 215,000 people
You may have enjoyed dairy products made from Fertile Ridge Dairy Milk without knowing it. Brand names including Dean’s, Morning Glory and Borden may contain milk from our farm.
Local farmland is used to produce high quality feed for our cattle. We grow a variety of crops in order to provide the most balanced diets and plentiful feeds possible. The main crops grown on the farm are corn, soybeans, alfalfa/grass, oats and wheat.
Fertile Ridge relies on local farmers to help plow fields, grow crops and harvest feeds. In addition, we rely on many suppliers to provide additional alfalfa hay, corn and straw.
*According to USDA, the U.S. consumer consumes 11.5 gallons of milk per person per year.