Adam Liddle and his family have frequented World Dairy Expo for many years, and he’s even heard his name announced over the intercom in the showring as a judge. Last year, when he heard his name announced, though, it was a little surprising.
“I was ringside with my kids, in disbelief,” he mentioned. “I felt very honored. Many of the previous winners, I respect very much. It was a complete surprise to me!”
That announcement early Friday afternoon alerted everyone that Adam Liddle of Argyle, N.Y., was the 77th winner of the award given in memory of Arthur B. Klussendorf designed by the famous Tiffany Jewelers.
Liddle owns and operates Liddleholme Farm in Argyle, N.Y., with his wife, Nicole, and children, Anthony, Brock, and Hailee. He developed an appreciation for deep pedigrees and show types by working for a few notable herds along the way.
A family passion
“My biggest mentors are my parents,” shared Liddle. “I was brought up on their farm and that is where my passion for registered Holsteins and my love of farming began.”
When Liddle was in eighth grade, his parents sold their home farm. In high school, Liddle’s father, William “Bill” Liddle, managed Pamtom Farm in Hudson Falls, N.Y. That’s where he became involved in the show circuit, working with exceptional show cows alongside his father. “My first time at Expo was in 1988,” he shared. “We just went there to watch the show and see the quality of cattle. It was pretty amazing!”
“The next year, we took a string of cows from Pamtom and were named Premier Exhibitor of the show. I have gone every year since then, some years working with the Pamtom string and then with the Ridgedale string,” he continued. Pamtom Farm received the Premier Exhibitor award at the 1989 and 1990 World Dairy Expos.
In 1993, Ridgedale Farm of Sharon Springs, N.Y., welcomed Liddle into their barns. “Both of these places were great work experiences and gave me opportunities to meet many people throughout the U.S. and Canada,” he shared.
Liddle stayed with Ridgedale Farm for five years until he and his wife rented their own farm, milking 45 cows in 1999. In 2001, they purchased the farm where they are currently located. They now milk 70 cows in a tie stall barn, all registered Holsteins. They also own 290 acres, 60 acres of which are used for corn and baleage. Liddle’s son, Brock, also has a few Jerseys he breeds. Liddle mentioned, “All of my kids have shown at Expo and it is a favorite place for all of us to go.”
Speaking of the showstring, Liddleholme cattle have obtained numerous show titles. All-New York and Junior All-New York awards, as well as nominations for All-American and Junior All-American titles are just a few of the achievements of their show herd. “I have been fortunate enough to judge at World Dairy Expo a handful of times and it is always a thrill to see the best cows and people in the business,” he said. Liddle has judged the World Dairy Expo’s Junior Holstein, Holstein, Red and White, and Guernsey shows.
He’s judged many shows beyond Expo, including the Northeast Fall National, All-American Junior Show, Western National Spring Show, Quebec’s Supreme Show, and the Wisconsin State Fair Junior Show, to name a few. Liddle has also traveled to Canada, Europe, Australia, Africa, and Switzerland to evaluate cattle.
A breeder’s perspective
In 2008, Liddle led a highly successful sale, the Liddleholme Farm dispersal. New York state sale history was met that year when the farm sale averaged $7,573 on 179 lots for a total of $1.2 million with cattle traveling to 17 states and two Canadian provinces. Liddle and his family have marketed cattle under the title of the “Stars of Liddleholme Spring Opportunity Sale” as well. Liddle explained, “We believe in the power of deep pedigreed cows from outstanding cow families. We try to merchandize about 50 of our best animals from these strong cow families each year.”
Liddle has a long list of cow families that he prefers, but there are a few that really stand out to him. “Working with those great farms and going to World Dairy Expo for all of those years, there have been many cows that I really admire.”
“My favorite would have to be my son Anthony’s cow ‘Lu,’ Liddleholme Resur Lu-Red-ET, EX-97, 3E. This cow was an All-American last year and Reserve All-American the year before. Lu is Bred and Owned and from a great pedigree.”
He has some time-honored advice for anyone trying to make a living with cattle. “Do it because you have the passion for it,” explained Liddle. “Learn from every situation to get better. Sometimes you learn what ‘not’ to do, and many times you learn little things that make you better, too. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.”