The response to creation of Peninsula Pride Farms was so great that it had to limit membership in its first year, the coalition’s president said in comments reported in a news release from the Dairy Business Association (DBA) this month.
Peninsula Pride, which launched last March as a nonprofit organization, has 43 members with farms ranging in size from 60 to 6,000 cows. The group’s vision is for clean and safe water along with a successful agricultural community, according to president Don Niles of Dairy Dreams in Casco, whose report to the Dairy Strong conference in Madison is summarized in the news release by Jamie Mara, DBA public relations director.
Niles said in its first few months the group:
+ Held two field days. One focused on determining the depth of soil to bedrock to help farmers identify more sensitive fields. The other examined the benefits of using cover crops
+ Started a Cover Crop Challenge program to encourage farmers to use cover crops to lower their phosphorous loss per acre to 2.34 pounds, well below the state allowable limit of 6 pounds.
+ Created a program called Water Well to help families dealing with E.coli well contamination, no matter the source. The group has helped four families.
+ Received two $20,000 grants from the state agriculture department and raised more than $50,000 in community support donations.