Oyster, Ramseys lead Stark herds and earn state rank


HARTVILLE, Ohio – The milk flows in Stark County, which is ranked fifth in Ohio in terms of milk cows but fourth in production. The county’s milk producers churn out 200 million pounds of milk each year.

Helping the county maintain its ranking in the state’s dairy belt are three dairy farms that are ranked in the top 20 Holstein herds in the state: Veraldo Farms, Paradise Valley Farms and Campbell Brothers Farm.

These operations and other dairy farms were recognized for their production accomplishments during the countywide dairy banquet March 26 at Hartville Kitchen.

State leaders. Veraldo Farms, operated by the Lynn Oyster family of Alliance, leads the county’s ranks in terms of butterfat and protein production, with a herd average of 28,141 pounds milk, 1,089 pounds of fat and 855 pounds of protein. The herd’s energy corrected milk production of 29,461 pounds earned the Stark County farm the third-place spot on the state’s Holstein rankings.

The farm milks approximately 110 head twice daily.

The Ramsey family of Paradise Valley Farms is ranked seventh in the state and leads Stark County in milk production, with a herd average (3x) of 28,842 pounds of milk, 979 pounds of fat and 842 pounds protein. The farm currently milks approximately 360 head.

Campbell Brothers Farm is ranked third in the county for milk and second in fat production, with a 75-cow herd average of 26,132 pounds milk, 990 pounds fat and 800 pounds protein, good enough to propel the farm into the 20th spot in the state’s rankings.

Other top herds. Rounding out the county’s top 10 dairy herds were the following:

Norwescor Holsteins, 24,186 pounds milk, 892 pounds fat and 733 pounds protein; Meleda Farms, 23,725 pounds milk, 874 pounds fat and 708 pounds protein; Applebee Fox Farms, 23,083 pounds milk, 810 pounds fat and 690 pounds protein; Destiny-M Holsteins, 22,917 pounds milk, 813 pounds fat and 699 pounds protein; Dan Kolm, 21,579 pounds milk, 822 pounds fat and 701 pounds protein; Brooklane Farm, 22,279 pounds milk, 804 pounds fat and 688 pounds protein; and Hickory land Farms, 21,994 pounds milk, 851 pounds fat and 648 pounds protein.

Keith Linerode of Brooklane Farms earned the Most Improved Herd award, increasing his milk production average more than 2,300 pounds over last year to 22,279 pounds milk.

Phil Myers of Circle Hawk Farm received recognition as the county’s top Jersey herd, with production on 68 head of 15,927 pounds milk, 846 pounds butterfat and 584 pounds protein.

Applebee Fox Farms received the low somatic cell county award.

Special award. Longtime tester with the Dairy Herd Improvement system, Jim Cawrse, received a special industry award from the dairy board for his more than 30 years of service.

“He’s not a dairy farmer, although he’s seen most of our cows on a regular basis,” said dairyman Jim Stockert in presenting the award and thanking Cawrse for his work.

Cawrse started testing herds in Medina County in the 1960s. He started in Stark County herds in February 1973, and for many years also did artificial insemination work.

Brian Winters, general manager of DHI Cooperative, echoed Stockert’s praise of Cawrse. “I wish we had someone like Jim in all of our counties.”

Other testers were also introduced: Marjorie Ewart, Hope Fowler and Paul Oberlin.

DHI update. Winters gave a brief update on the cooperative’s activities, which included selling its offices in Powell, north of Columbus, and moving to rented office space on the Select Sires campus near Plain City. The co-op also purchased the assets of Ohio Dairy Records near Dalton and moved that lab to Apple Creek. Winters said the location of that testing facility in Wayne County will help cut transportation costs and turnaround time for many producers.

With an eye toward streamlining, the co-op has cut its staff to a third of what it used to be. Hoping to offer improved services, the co-op also offers record processing from Raleigh, N.C., and is offering software for use with handheld computers for ease of on-farm applications.

Leon Coblentz, Mike Ramsey, Frank Burkett III and Jim Stockert were all re-elected to the Stark County Dairy Board.

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