Farm Tours

The Dairy Excellence Foundation hosts annual day-long farm tours to give high school students the opportunity to gain firsthand knowledge of modern working dairy farms while showcasing careers within the dairy industry as well as agricultural technologies used to help improve today’s farming practices.

2020 Fall Farm Tour

This year's farm tour was virtual! 

When: The event was hosted on Friday, October 9, 2020 during two different segments.

Where: Virtual event hosted by the Dairy Education Foundation on YouTube.

Details: The first segment during the virtual farm tour was held at Maple Bottom Farm in Dawson, Pennsylvania. Viewers heard about the farm's two agritourism business of running a bed and breakfast year-round and a sunflower maze in the fall.  They also gained exposure to the financial side of the dairy industry and heard from the ag accountant who works with the dairy farm.  Viewers experienced the farm’s robotic milking technology, hearing from the engineer who operates the farm’s robotic milking equipment.   Finally, the farm's crop specialist discussed crop production and rotation as well as the types of storage used in dairy farms for harvested crops.

The second segment during the virtual farm tour took place at Pennwood Farms in Berlin, Pennsylvania. Viewers toured the carousel milking parlor and free stall barns in this 600-cow family farm being able to see the process of milking from start to finish.  They also learned about the various ingredients in the total mixed ration (TMR) fed to the dairy cows from the nutritionist who recommends the feeds mixed.  Viewers learned about methane digestor which is used on the farm for electric and heat generation.  Finally, they learned about herd health, animal care, and the In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) process from the farm’s veterinarian.

Resources: Units with lesson plans have been created complete with the farm tour videos, video discussion guides, Kahoots and word searches for educators or other leaders to use with children in grades 5 - 12.  Below you will find the resources divided into age appropriate units, Grades 5 - 8 and Grades 9 - 12.  Feel free to use these free resources as needed.