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Vermont dairy farm trades cows for goats

Dairy goats stand in a barn at Joneslan Farm, May 13, 2021, in Hyde Park, Vt. The farm sold its...
Dairy goats stand in a barn at Joneslan Farm, May 13, 2021, in Hyde Park, Vt. The farm sold its dairy cows and switched to goats, delivering its first goat milk in February to Vermont Creamery owned by Land O' Lakes for cheese making.(Lisa Rathke | AP)
Published: Jul. 20, 2021 at 10:26 AM CDT
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HYDE PARK, Vt. (AP) - Two brothers operating their family’s dairy farm in Vermont have made the drastic decision to give up hundreds of cows for goats.

The Jones family, which had raised cows for 150 years, now houses about 1,000 goats in their barn that remains adorned with painted cut-outs of dairy cattle. The farm delivers its goat milk to Vermont Creamery, owned by Land O’ Lakes, for cheese making.

Fluctuating milk prices paid to dairy cow farmers in the U.S. and rising costs have driven some small family farms to either go big or out of business.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the number of dairy cow farms fell by more than half between 2003 and 2020 while the number of cows nationwide grew as farms consolidated.

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