It is June Dairy Month

Posted: 5/31/2011

Posted By:  Steve Dick 

For more than 70 years, dairy farm families have been celebrating June Dairy Month.  Join us in raising a glass of milk (or scoop of ice cream) to the dedicated farm families who produce a wholesome supply of dairy products for South Dakota and beyond. 

South Dakota has about 370 dairy farms which produce about 230 million gallons of milk each year.   About 98 percent of South Dakota farms are owned by families - in many cases, multiple generations of the same family. 

Dairy foods are a great example of food produced fresh, locally.  On average, it takes about 48 hours from when milk is produced on a dairy farm to travel to a processor, and then be delivered to retail stores.  

During June Dairy Month, many dairy farm families celebrate by opening the doors of their farms to their neighbors and communities.  Check out the Ag United Events page for opportunities to visit South Dakota open houses or participate in Day Out on the Farm tours this summer.  Or, visit Dairy Farming Today  web site for a virtual tour of modern dairy farms.     

Dairy cows are also economic engines for local and state economies.  According to analysis by Alvaro Garcia, South Dakota Cooperative Extension Dairy Specialist, every time we add 100 dairy cows to the state, we increase milk production by 2 million pounds and milk sales by $300,000, resulting in approximately 8 new jobs.  The 1.89 billion pounds of milk produced during 2009 resulted in $261 million in cash receipts and 6,685 jobs generated.  In addition, money generated by dairy farms has a large impact on other local businesses. The economic impact of the nearly 95,000 dairy cows in the state in 2009 was estimated in close to $1.5 billion.


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