If we ask ourselves why we do what we do in the dairy every day, surely, the answer – especially for those of us who have left loved ones in our countries of origin and adapted to new cultures, who miss the warmth of our former homes – is that we do it all for family.

Everything we do every day is for our families. We would leave everything behind if doing so meant that we could support them and give them a chance at a better future. This is why we take our jobs so seriously – the livelihood of our families depends directly on the production of milk and the welfare of the animals on our dairies.

If we were to pose the same question – why do you do what you do every day – to the owners of the dairies where we work, their answer would surely be the same: They, too, do it all to support their own families. These owners, through a combination of hard work, sacrifice and good fortune, have land and animals that they can utilize to help give their families the best lives possible.

At the end of a hard day of work, what drives a dairy owner and an employee is also what unites them – family. That’s why all of us do what we do.

More often than not, both the employer and the employee are thankful to have jobs that allow them to support their families – but unfortunately, for many employers, the low price of milk means that the dairy is barely making enough to cover the baseline costs of keeping the operation afloat. As such, some dairy operators do not have what could be called a real income – but even so, payment for employees is always there, every quarter.

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The low profits producers receive, regardless of the size or type of their dairies, is a reality affecting many – not only economically but, often, emotionally as well. As such, we should work to be more thankful for and collaborate with each other, as we are striving to support two families – both the owner’s and our own. In an economy like the one the dairy industry is currently experiencing, we must ask ourselves how we can help.

How can I – as a milker, a cow pusher, a feeder, etc. – help improve the quality of the milk we sell, reduce the number of cows with mastitis, improve the health and welfare of the animals, create an environment of respect for my work team? Showing up on time is just one example of a little detail that can help the dairy survive and thrive in the current situation. These are all ways we can help the dairy survive and thrive.

Let’s switch from simply being employees to being partners for our employers and support those who support our families. Because, at the end of the day, everything we all do is for the good of our families.  end mark

This article has been translated in Spanish. Click here to view the article.

Jorge Delgado