Monday, September 30, 2013

Celebrate National Farm to School Month

October is a perfect month for fieldtrips and farm tours. The Farm to School Program strives to connect schools to local farms, with the objectives of serving healthy meals in schools, improving student nutrition and  promoting agriculture, health and education opportunities to support local and regional farms.

In case you aren't able to visit a dairy farm this month,  here's a few dairy facts I'd like  to share with you   for National  Farm to School Month:

  • Milk travels from local farm families--to inspection,  processing and pasteurization, to you--in 48 hours or less.

  • There are 51,000 dairy farms in the United States and 98 percent of them are family owned.

  • It only takes 5 to 10 minutes to milk a cow on today's dairy farm.

  • Fresh milk straight from the cow is 101 degrees. Milk is quickly cooled and kept cold at 35-40 degrees F.

  • A single dairy cow yields about 6 to 7 gallons of milk per day.

  • Today's dairy farms produce almost three times more milk than farms of 19--and with about half the number of crops.

  • 90 pounds of feed and hay are consumed by a dairy cow each day.

  • Dairy farming provides 130,000 jobs in the United States.

  • Water used to clean the milking equipment and barn is recycled to irrigate fields to grow crops.

  • Manure is recycled and is used by dairy farmers to fertilize their crops and for many of us to fertilize our gardens.

  •                                             I'll be celebrating with milk--how about you?

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