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Health professionals visit dairy farm to get closer to where food comes from

Published on 30 November 2017
Rippplebrook Farm in Napanee, Ontario

On Sept. 14, registered dietitians from Ontario visited a dairy farm, and an egg farm and grading operation, to gain a better understanding of farm practices and hear from farmers how they care for their animals, the environment and produce safe, quality food for all Canadians.

Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC) partnered with Croplife Canada, Burnbrae Farms and Egg Farmers of Ontario to sponsor the tour organized by Farm and Food Care Ontario.

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Kevin MacLean, a third-generation dairy farmer and owner of Ripplebrook Farm in Napanee, Ontario, welcomed a group of 25 dietitians to his farm. Kevin and his family are no strangers to hosting farm visits; they embrace the opportunities to showcase their farm and the work that goes into producing safe, nutritious milk.

He happily introduced the group to his cows and explained that the care and comfort of his animals is of the utmost importance to him and every Canadian dairy farmer. The tour of the farm included a visit to the calf house, the barn and the milking parlour.

Joining Kevin on the tour was ruminant nutritionist Lisa Brennan, who explained the complexities that go into creating the most nutritious food for the cows, ensuring they received all the nutrients they need. The dietitians were impressed and surprised by the science involved in formulating cow diets.

This type of outing is incredibly important, as it helps health professionals get closer to where food comes from and allows farmers to talk about their industry in a comfortable setting.

Many dietitians left the tours stating they were better equipped to respond confidently to consumer questions about milk production, farm practices and the safety and quality of Canadian milk. It also helps DFC better equip dietitians to answer questions about where their food comes from and how it is produced.

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Another tour was scheduled for Oct. 24 at a dairy farm near Toronto with a group of dietitians from Loblaws. The grocery store chain reached out to Farm and Food Care Ontario to organize the visit as their in-store dietitians receive many questions about milk, dairy cows, poultry, organic versus conventional farming and crop protection programs.

This tour, like others DFC has had the pleasure to help organise, will provide dietitians answers and insights straight from the source: Canada’s dairy farmers.

A friendly reminder

You are a dairy farmer? Sign up now for the Dairy Express, the bi-monthly e-newsletter published by Dairy Farmers of Canada. To do so, simply send an email to Emilie Tobin to add your name to the mailing list.  end mark

PHOTO: Registered dietitians visited Ripplebrook Farm in Napanee, Ontario, to learn firsthand how farmers care for their animals, the environment and produce safe, quality milk. Photo courtesy of DFC.

Dairy Farmers of Canada
Founded in 1934, Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC) is the national organization which defends the interests of Canadian dairy farmers and strives to create favourable conditions for the Canadian dairy industry.

Working in accordance with supply management principles, DFC promotes safe, high quality, sustainable and nutritious Canadian dairy products made from 100% Canadian milk through various marketing, nutrition, policy and lobbying initiatives.

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Driven by a strong sense of community and pride, DFC and Canadian dairy farmers actively support a number of local and national activities. Visit Dairy Farmers of Canada for more information.

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