You won’t find sibling rivalry on the Jordan Dairy Farm in Rutland, MA. Fact is, Randy and Brian Jordan don’t have time for such nonsense. And even if they did, the two brothers couldn’t be closer. “I’d be lost without him,” says Randy. Running this fifth-generation dairy farm means splitting the work down the middle, and the two men have had great role models: their father, Wayne Jordan, worked the farm with his brother Warren, after inheriting the operation from their dad.
This is a true family farm. Jordan Dairy Farm has been in existence since the late 1800s, and at its present location in Rutland since 1941, when Howard Jordan moved his grandfather’s vegetable operation from Holden, increased the cow herd and began bottling milk. Today, Randy and Brian share management of the farm, with Brian overseeing the herd and Randy occupied with the farm’s day-to-day operation. The Jordan Farm currently milks 375 Holstein cows, averaging around 80 pounds of milk per cow per day with approximately 325 young stocks. State-of-the-art barns house 600 dairy cattle, and the farm includes 400 acres of rented land as well as 500 acres of land for grain, silage corn and hay. The family also raises turkeys for holiday orders and cultivates blueberries for sale at local farmers markets.
In an operation this size, working smart and sustainably is an important goal, which led the family to install an anaerobic digester as part of a cooperative implemented by AGreen Energy, LLC. The digester allows them to operate completely off-grid, thanks to a daily ‘diet’ of around 20,000 gallons of liquid food waste (from HP Hood, Cabot Creamery, Kayem Foods, and Cains Foods) and manure waste, which creates a biogas that generates electricity. The digester at Jordan Farm currently produces enough power to run and heat the farming operation as well as power an additional 300 homes. It’s no wonder why running Jordan Dairy Farm is a two-man – er, two-brother job. As Randy explains, they have each other’s back, and when one leaves the farm on business or even for vacation, they know the place is in good hands. “We don’t have to train a replacement or worry about an employee not showing up for work,” says Randy. “For us, working together is a win-win.”