Sept. 29 2019 01:45 PM

    Judging teams tour the iconic dairy facility.

    Visitors watch the robots milk the cows

    The Hoard’s Dairyman Farm has been hosting judging teams prior to World Dairy Expo for decades. It is a busy time for our staff and the many visitors we host. I toured the farm when I was a student competing in the contests. Things have changed a tad since then. In those days, the Guernsey cows were kept in the tie stall barn at the entrance to the farm.

    For the last decade, students who came to the farm toured the milking parlor and freestall barn as part of their pre-contest activities. They could see both Jersey and Guernsey cattle at our farm. This year, teams toured not only the freestall and milking parlor, but also the brand new freestall barn that houses four robots used to milk half of the herd.

    Belaire cheese is sampled by visitors
    Tour guides led over 100 students and advisers around the farm, detailing the operation from its beginnings in 1899 to present day. In addition, the farm’s own Belaire cheese was available for sampling in our visitor center.

    Following the farm tour, students visited the National Dairy Shrine museum and Nasco. Hoard's Dairyman and Nasco then provided a pasta lunch.

    We thank all who attended today and wish them well in tomorrow’s judging contest. Hoard’s Dairyman staff will be covering the event with results in the 4-H, post-secondary, and university contests posted on Facebook. Feel free to like, comment, and cheer on your favorites from home!

    Patti Hurtgen

    The author is the online media manager and is responsible for the website, webinars, and social media. A graduate of Modesto Junior College and Fresno State, she was raised on a California dairy and frequently blogs on youth programs and consumer issues.