The majority of our feed is home grown and consists of corn silage and alfalfa. In a good summer, we can count on up to four cuttings of alfalfa. All of our crops are used to feed our cattle, so we need enough crops to last all year.
Each spring we prepare the ground for planting by cultivating, removing rocks and fertilization. Alfalfa is planted first, followed by corn. As soon as the corn is planted its time to cut, merge and chop the first batch of alfalfa. In fall, the harvest of corn silage begins. All of our crops are stored in bunkers for fermentation to occur to protect and preserve the feed.
We do the majority of our fieldwork; however, living in Wisconsin our growing season is short and the weather is unpredictable so we do rely on the assistance of custom professionals to help get our crops harvested in a timely manner. In addition, we purchased crops from nearby farmers to ensure we have enough feed for our cattle.
On average, Drake Dairy produces over 126,000 pounds of milk per day. To put that into perspective, everybody needs three eight-ounce glasses of milk a day to provide the necessary calcium in her or his diet according to the American Medical Association. Drake Dairy supplies 84,000 people with this requirement each and every day of the year. In one year, we produce over 5,231,362 gallons of milk.
Our milk is chilled immediately after milking. Then the milk is taken directly to the processor so that our customers receive the freshest product available. Samples of our milk are tested for harmful bacteria and other quality factors each time milk leaves our dairy.
With a highly trained staff and advanced computer system we are able to maintain a high quality of milk. In addition, the DHIA (Dairy Herd Improvement Association) tests a sample of our milk from each cow monthly. Over the years, Drake Dairy has received numerous production and quality awards from the DHIA.
We are proud to be a Verified Premium Plus Producer.