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Blue Diamond Dairy is Good Neighbor

Wed, Jun 2nd, 2010
Posted in State of Minnesota

ST. PAUL, Minn. - A Stearns County couple will receive the monthly Good Farm Neighbor Award from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA). Sadie and Glen Frericks of rural Melrose operate a 70-cow dairy and were selected the May winners of the award. Sadie Frericks says they are very concerned about their herd's health and well-being.

"Glen and I are really 'cow people' and we give them a lot of individual attention," says Frericks. "We know their entire family and life history and I think because we know them so well we can tell when something might be wrong."

In addition to their focus on animal care, Frericks says maintaining a positive public image and protecting the environment are also important to them. She says they developed a 'good neighbor' policy for their farm in which they listen to concerns people may have and try to mediate the situation. She says they've also enrolled in the MDA's Livestock Environmental Quality Assurance Program to improve the quality of the water, soil, air and wildlife habitat on their farm. Hard work and dedication has also earned the Frericks the Five Star Dairy status from the Minnesota Milk Producers Association.

Sadie Frericks says they're concerned about their community and try to stay involved in a variety of ways, including writing a blog titled "The Next Generation" to help young dairy farmers and others learn more about the dairy profession.

"When our neighbors see us doing good things in the community, it makes them realize we're interested in the big picture."

Winners of the MDA's Good Farm Neighbor Award are selected by a committee representing the University of Minnesota, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council, the Minnesota Corn Growers Association and the MDA.

Nominations can be emailed to margaret.hart@state.mn.us or mailed to Good Farm Neighbor Award, Minnesota Department of Agriculture, 625 North Robert Street, St. Paul, Minnesota, 55155. A nomination form can be downloaded at http://www.mda.state.mn.us/news/publications/aboutmda/goodneighboraward.pdf

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