Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) and eight local dairy farm families celebrated the one-year anniversary of Craigs Station Creamery, a unique milk plant located in Livingston County, New York.
Opening in the fall of 2014, Craigs Station Creamery is a first-of-its-kind facility, which combines the resources from DFA, along with sustainable and environmentally friendly technology and the traditional goodness of family farming.
“In addition to being a first in terms of direct member investment, this plant is the first we have built on an actual dairy farm, and is truly a showcase story for traceability, sustainability and environmental responsibility,” said Rick Smith, president and chief executive officer, Dairy Farmers of America. “Today’s consumers want food that is nutritious and responsibly sourced, which is what Craigs Station Creamery is all about.”
The plant utilizes several environmentally friendly practices, including a methane digester, which uses waste from the farms and the plant to generate energy for Craigs Station Creamery and one of the surrounding family farms, and solar panels, which are used to heat water utilized at the plant. In addition, the proximity of the facility to the farms that supply it allows for a minimal carbon footprint in the hauling and transporting of milk to the plant.
During the open house ceremony, Smith thanked those who have been instrumental in the plant’s inaugural success, including the eight farm family owners, and DFA members, who invested in the facility, the co-op’s Northeast Area Council members and Craigs Station Creamery employees. Additional speakers at the event were John Noble, president, Noblehurst Farms (one of the eight farm family owners), Brian Paris, general manager, Craigs Station Creamery, Vincent Esposito, regional director, Empire State Development, Finger Lakes regional office, and Bill Beeman, co-chair for DFA’s Northeast Area Council.
“This plant represents a forward-thinking approach by our membership, and its first-year success is a testament to the commitment of the management team, employees and members,” noted Bill Beeman, Pennsylvania dairy farmer and co-chair for the Northeast Area Council. “What’s more, as dairy farmers, we are all committed to practicing sustainable, environmentally friendly methods. With this plant and its direct connection to the farm, we are better able to tell this story to our customers and consumers.”
To commemorate the one-year anniversary, the group concluded with a celebratory milk toast.
Source: Dairy Farmers of America