In Gustine, California, 2,000 cows live at Hidden Valley Dairy, enjoying a routine of food, rest and milking. The Nutcher family views their cows as athletes, using a nutritionist and feed monitoring system to give them the ideal nutrition mix — all from a giant mixing bowl!
See how this high-tech family farm cares for its cows in this “Field Trips” episode with Tara Beaver Coronado.
The Nutcher family enjoys "that we get to experience the cycle of life," both when growing crops and raising dairy cattle. "We get to watch a newborn transform into a productive milk cow. With our crops we get to see how sowing seeds reaps a harvest through lots of hard work. It's just incredibly rewarding to be a part of an industry that feeds people."
"It is truly amazing how efficiently dairy operations are run. We recycle water up to 4 times and utilize byproducts from other agricultural industries in our cows' diets that would have otherwise ended up in a landfill, and solar energy. We also are very tech savvy with managing our dairy herd. Each of our cows has an RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tag that connects to our handheld computer system when we are out working with our cows. We also recently installed automatic sorting gates in our milking parlor to aid in getting out selected cattle we may need to move or work with."
"Our proudest achievement to date would be completing our recent solar farm project. Our 975kWh facility generates enough electricity to run our entire dairy operation."