In this episode of the Progressive Dairy Podcast, host Kimmi Devaney visits with West Virginia dairy producer Joe Shockey about opportunities to revitalize the dairy industry in Appalachia. West Virginia was one of the visible bright spots during our 2024 State of Dairy interviews with producers and industry leaders. Hear from Shockey about new dairy processing and other efforts to rebuild the state’s dairy industry.

This episode is brought to you by AMS Galaxy.

AMS Galaxy logo

Meet the milking robot that wasn’t just pulled out of a hat – The Galaxy Merlin2G. No need for a crystal ball to see how the Merlin2G can benefit your farm. Brought to you by the USA robotic milking company, you know and trust, Galaxy. To learn more visit

Galaxy dairy farm automation listens to the farmers’ needs first. They work directly with dairy farmers to bring automated technology to the U.S. market. Their products are designed to adapt to the constant changes in the dairy industry and find new ways to continue to make farms more efficient and profitable. Their newest addition, the Merlin2G , is the next generation of robotic milking. Using Galaxy controls and long history in robotics and automation, incorporated to with the global robotic experience of Fullwood JOZ, the Merlin2G can take your milking out of this world.

Season 6, Episode 14


Here’s a breakdown of the episode:

  • [~1:00] About Shockey and his dairy farm in West Virginia
  • [~2:05] The dairy landscape in West Virginia
  • [~5:40] The impact of new processing capacity that came online in 2023
  • [~10:00] New resources that are assisting in rebuilding West Virginia’s dairy industry
  • [~13:40] Opportunities for dairies to relocate to West Virginia
  • [~15:30] Other opportunities for rebuilding West Virginia’s dairy infrastructure
  • [~17:05] West Virginia’s dairy regulations 
  • [~18:05] Other points of optimism for West Virginia dairy producers
  • [~20:40] Rapid-fire questions

Are you a podcast subscriber?

Keep up with our Progressive Dairy podcast episodes to gain insights from what is happening in the industry to new and evolving management techniques for your operation. Just like our magazine, we’ll cover a multitude of topics including human resources, business management, facilities, repro and genetics, feed and nutrition, calf and heifer raising, dry and transition cows, herd health, hoof health, milk quality, animal welfare and manure handling. Subscribe now to be notified of new releases.

Click here to find past episodes and quick links to subscribe on your favorite platform.