The Verwey family, owners of Philip Verwey Farms 2 and 3 in Hanford, Calif., has been named among the 2019 Members of Distinction by Dairy Farmers of America (DFA).
The Members of Distinction program recognizes dairy farmers who excel on their operations, in their communities and in the industry. Honorees inspire others through their actions, leadership and involvement. They represent the best of the dairy industry.
DFA comprises nearly 14,000 farmer-owners across the United States. Each year, one notable member farm from each of DFA’s seven regional Areas is selected to receive this honor.
Philip Verwey Farms 2 and 3 represents the Cooperative’s Western Area. For Philip, Shelley and their son, Brent of Philip Verwey Farms 2 and 3, green practices make good business sense as well as environmental sense.
“We feel that’s what our consumer wants,” says Philip. “They want us to be green, and they want us to be good to our animals.”
By converting the farm’s traditional diesel-fueled feed mixing system to an electric-driven feeding system, the Verweys eliminated the emission of 20 tons of nitrogen oxides each year.
“It’s important to me that we implement sustainable practices on our farms because it makes good business sense, but it’s also good for the environment and the land,” says Shelley. “For example, we drink the water that comes from the ground, so we understand that what we put into the ground is important.”
As a family farm, sustainable practices are not the Verweys’ only focus. They also value their employees, their cows and the industry as a whole.
“We really believe that if people are happy and they’re doing a good job, then our cows are going to be happy,” says Shelley. “If you have happy cows, they give more milk and are healthier all around.”
For more on the Verwey family watch the following video: