Recycling is at the heart of dairy farming. Water is recycled to use on crops or to clean the milking parlor. Manure is recycled as fertilizer for the fields or converted into electricity on farms with cow power technology. Dairy farms help their community recycle inedible food waste and byproducts from food production. Resources are continuously reused to make something new on dairy farms, and that is what Blue Spruce Farm in Bridport is all about.
Blue Spruce Farm has a farm waste digester, which converts manure, food waste and farm by-products into natural fertilizer and energy to power 400 to 500 homes annually.
“Our community benefits from the local source of renewable electricity generated right on our farm,” said Marie Audet of Blue Spruce Farm. “Additionally, the natural, nutrient-rich fertilizer enhances our soil health allowing us to grow more hay and corn so we can continue to feed our cows and produce high-quality milk.”
The farm supplies Cabot Creamery with milk to make cheese and other dairy products. Cabot returns the organic by-products from the cheese production to the farm. Some of the by-product is fed to the cows, the rest is fed into the farm waste digester and converted into renewable energy. Additionally, up to 20% of a cow’s balanced diet comes from human food production waste, with ingredients like citrus pulp, cotton seed, bread, sugar, cookie meal, beets, and micro-brew remnants.
“When you enter a grocery store, be conscious of the hard work it took farmers to grow the food you’re buying,” Audet said. “While we’re feeding you, we’re feeding your food scraps back into our closed-loop system. A cycle that ensures that healthy food and a healthy planet can indeed go hand in hand.”