Rosy-Lane Holsteins of Watertown, Wisconsin, recently won a national award for outstanding dairy farm sustainability.
The U.S. Dairy Sustainability Awards were announced Apr. 22. Rosy-Lane Holsteins is owned by Lloyd and Daphne Holterman and their partners Tim Strobel and Jordan Matthews. The farm is one of three national winners in its category.
The award winners represent dairy’s commitment to sustainability, demonstrating how transparency and ingenuity lead to sustainable and scalable practices that benefit their businesses, communities and the environment, stated the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy.
Rosy-Lane’s emphasis on cow health started with incorporating cattle genetic technologies more than 25 years ago. The partners have focused on cows that live longer and are less susceptible to disease and illness. Genetics also helps the farm work toward its goal of producing 1.7 pounds of milk for every 1 pound of feed for the milking herd. And the farm hasn’t used antibiotics on its milking herd for more than seven years.
“It’s really no different than a family of humans that live a long, healthy life,” said Lloyd Holterman. “Good genetics allow us to have a healthy family of cows with the ability to ward off illness and disease.»
The dairy’s commitment to sustainability is ingrained in the farm’s every day philosophy with its 20 employees, Daphne Holterman said.
“We’re strong on setting protocols about the environment, our cows and our people, and then making sure everyone is in alignment,” she said. “As a team, we work to be better every day.”
Edge Dairy Farmer Cooperative nominated Rosy-Lane Holsteins for the award. The award program’s judges evaluated dozens of nominations based on economic, environmental and community impact. The independent judging panel — comprised of experts working with and throughout the dairy community — also considered the nominees’ learning, innovation, scalability and ability to replicate practices.