There seems to be a lot of talk these days about large farms squeezing out the small farms. I see small farmers complaining about big farmers gobbling up land. I see people in the city lamenting the passing of the picturesque red barn farms. I see a lot of talk about big ag and small local and very few people seem to really understand what’s going on. So let’s talk about why small farms are being replaced by larger farms.
Hubs and I farm in a partnership with his parents. We milk around 100 cows and grow crops on around 300 acres. In Wisconsin, where we live, the average dairy farm is 100 cows. So we are your average sized farm for our area. We have a couple of part time employees that milk a few milkings a week, we have a full time employee that helps us get everything done. Hubs and both of his parents derive their income solely from the farm. I work on the farm as well as off the farm and do not take pay from the farm. Right now the amount of income that our cows produce can sustain the farm and the people who draw a paycheck from it. However, we are far from living a lavish lifestyle. There isn’t piles of money lying around that I have found. Most people would classify us as a “small farm”.
May 17 2014