Every family farm puts longevity high on the list of priorities when it comes to making a decision. Whether it’s a buying a new product, building a business, or preparing for growth in technology, these decisions make or break the future generations of family farms. Freund’s Farm, Inc. in East Canaan, Connecticut understands how important and impactful making the right decision can be.
Freund’s Farm is owned and operated by brothers Mathew and Benjamin Freund along with their families and they are perfect example of diversifying. “There’s no shortage of unique ideas and projects that are ongoing on our farm” Says Amanda and Rachel Freund,” From turning an idea for a value added product into a business making CowPots, planting ginseng in our forest, setting up bee boxes, and having a seasonal farm market; diversification and adopting the newest technologies are critical components to our farm’s success.”
That’s right! If you thought the name sounded familiar, Freund’s Farm is the maker of CowPots. This is an operation that has 2nd and 3rd generations working together managing a dairy farm as well as a manufacturing facility producing biodegradable pots using composted cow manure. Diversification, sustainability, and staying ahead with new technologies are what has made this family farm so successful.
That’s why when they expanded their dairy and knew they were going to be building a new barn, they began investigating their options. They started visiting farms to check out robotic milking systems and all the accessories associated with cow care, including beds. They made the decision to switch from rubber mattresses topped with manure solids to waterbeds. Why? “The hock health we saw when visiting farms with waterbeds sealed the deal for us,” Amanda and Rachel say, “We decided that waterbeds would be the best option for our cows.”
They moved into the barn March of this year (2016). Though not a significant time, they believe that DCC Waterbeds are working to reduce and eliminate hock injuries and encourage longer laying times to improve overall cow comfort. “We have only been in our barn for a few months, so time will tell.” Says Amanda and Rachel, “We are confident about our decision to install waterbeds as we think that our cows will be more content, comfortable, and produce as a result.”
The farm is working with two agriculture service companies to better analyze the cow’s resting behaviors by tracking the number of cows standing up, laying down, lying time, perching, and lameness. All of us at Ryder Supply are very excited to hear about their findings in the coming months.
Though DCC Waterbeds are not “new” technology, they are by times out of the spotlight from the better known, industry standard sand bedding. They have proven, however, significant durability and longevity over years of use. Freund’s Farm did their research, looked into their options, and decided on DCC Waterbeds to carry their dairy herd into the next generation.
**Photo credit goes to Amanda Freund**