Women are very hands-on in dairy farming and play an essential part of an already essential business. They’re involved in everything from the day-to-day operations of running the farm to keeping cows comfortable. Take for example the unique dynamic at Kings-Ransom Farm and King Brothers Dairy.
Becky King grew up on a dairy farm in Western New York. Through her involvement in the 4-H Club and showing cows at the fair, she met Jeff King, whose family has been dairy farming since the late 1800’s. Becky and Jeff married in 1997. After having their first child, King’s mother-in-law helped her transitioned from working off farm at a corporate bank to working on the dairy.
Each of the farm’s 1,200 milking cows “work” for a total of only about 15 minutes a day. The rest of the time is theirs to eat, drink, and lie on the sand chewing their cud and relaxing.
King’s sister-in-law, Pandora, married to Jan King, is a veterinarian and herd manager at Kings-Ransom Farm. The women attribute sand bedding to a huge part of their success in keeping their cows comfortable, clean and healthy. “The cows love it!” say the Kings.
“In order to keep the business viable for the next generation, we need to continue to pursue excellence on the cow care end for the highest quality milk to go to processing,” says Becky, who is the general manager of King Brothers Dairy and its retail store.
Together, the women ensure that the cows are cared for around the clock because they know it DIRECTLY translates to the quality and taste of their milk, which is used to make the dairy products sold at their retail store.
“If nothing else, COVID really got people curious about where their food comes from. We hope this continues and that they stay open minded and hungry for knowledge. We really are excited at the increase of interest and people seeking out farmers to understand our practices,” says Becky.
The women, just as their husbands, are committed to keeping cows comfortable and producing a high quality and nutritious product to feed their community.