The Garfield Dairy shares co-op value of community

At the Garfield Dairy, 10,500 cows are milked twice a day.

Though it’s not a co-op, the community-minded values of the new Garfield Dairy near Bryant, South Dakota, make it an ideal member for an electric cooperative with the same commitment to community.

When Riverview, LLC, Garfield Dairy’s parent company (based in Minnesota) began looking for the site of its newest dairy, it logically looked for proximity to a processing facility, but also a place where it would have community support. “Community is one of the most important thing we look for in a location,” Martha Koehl, who works in communications at Riverview, says. “We don’t just want to be a business that just happens to be located there, we want to develop partnerships and relationships with the people and businesses in the community. And that is exactly what happened with the Garfield Dairy,” she says.

The dairy, named for the township in which it is located, is served by H-D Electric Cooperative in Clear Lake, South Dakota. The dairy operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year. The first cows were milked in 2021, and today 10,500 cows are milked twice a day. 

Developing partnerships in the community is part of the dairy’s culture. “We rely heavily on area producers,” Hohertz says. “We are an outlet for their crops, buying 100% of the feed we use from local farmers. And the manure produced at the dairy is applied to local farmland, providing fertilizer for the fields that produce that feed.”

To find out more about the relationship between Garfield Dairy and H-D Electric, and the daily processes at the dairy, read South Dakota co-op and dairy have an 'udderly' good partnership in the Summer 2022 issue of Basin Today

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