Dairy families take their long understood role as conservationists and environmental stewards seriously. This includes the important daily responsibility of protecting surface and groundwater resources through careful and efficient on-farm management practices.
Now, with the recent release of a short documentary, consumers, neighbors and stakeholders can get an up-close look at the many steps dairy families are taking to protect the water we all share.
Earlier this month, Dairy Cares members released “Working Harder for Cleaner Water,” an eight minute video illustrating the dairy community’s commitment to investing in water quality protection. The video, produced in collaboration with the California Dairy Research Foundation, is available for viewing on-line at: Dairy Cares Water Video.
Interviews with dairy farmers, water quality regulators, soil and water scientists, and research academics explore the smart, responsible water management techniques integral to the daily operation of California dairies.
Also discussed in the film is the diligent work California dairy families have undertaken with regulators to protect surface and groundwater sources. This year marks the sixth anniversary of the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board’s adoption of the nation’s strictest water quality regulations for dairies. Central Valley dairy farmers have invested tens of millions of dollars in water quality compliance efforts since adoption of the new regulations, more than $20 million annually.
As dairy farmers have moved to comply with these new, comprehensive water quality protection measures, their efforts have been supported by the award-winning California Dairy Quality Assurance Program (CDQAP), which offers ongoing education and tools to assist dairy farmers working to meet the requirements. CDQAP also offers a two-part environmental stewardship water quality course, which more than 1,300 dairy farmers have completed.
To ensure that progress continues with their water quality protection measures, Central Valley dairy farmers have also joined together in a first-of-its-kind effort known as the Central Valley Dairy Representative Monitoring Program (CVDRMP). The program’s goals are to measure the positive results and benefits of the improved management practices being adopted at dairies across the valley and identify opportunities for further advancements in dairy sustainability.
Because they know it’s the right thing to do, dairy families have invested in efforts to protect the valuable water resources we all share. Living and working in California, they are intimately aware of issues related to the quality of our future water supplies and what they mean for the health, well-being and prosperity of our communities. That’s why dairy families have implemented and will continue to improve practices to protect and conserve water resources, while remaining a sustainable source of safe and affordable dairy nutrition for millions of families to enjoy.
Dairy Cares is a statewide coalition supporting economic and environmental sustainability and responsible animal care. Our members include the Bank of the West, Bar 20 Dairy Farms, California Dairies Inc.,California Dairy Campaign, California Farm Bureau Federation, Conestoga-Rovers and Associates, Dairy Farmers of America-Western Area Council, Dairy Institute of California, Hilmar Cheese Co., HP Hood, Joseph Gallo Farms, Land O’Lakes, Milk Producers Council, Ruan Transport Corp., Western United Dairymen,California Cattlemen’s Association and others. For information, visit our web site or call 916-441-3318.