Inside the Newsroom @ A2 Journal

Welcome to Inside the Newsroom @ A2 Journal, a blog written by the newspaper's staff at A2 Journal, a new, weekly, community newspaper covering Ann Arbor. This blog is a place for members of the newspaper's staff to write their thoughts, observations, opinions and other informative pieces they put together while covering the rich history, interesting people, institutions and traditions that make Ann Arbor such a unique community.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

April 25 - Lisa's Musings (on Project RED, cows) and Every Day Life

Anyone who has read my blog for more than 5 minutes knows that I have a love affair with all things cow and cow-like.

So, today, in honor of Project RED (Rural Education Days), which will take place at the Washtenaw Farm Council Grounds this week, I'll pass along some cool dairy facts.

In fact, anyone can go to the Farm Council Grounds to learn more about agriculture and natural resources (including dairy cows) Wednesday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Included will be a special 20th anniversary celebration.

Project RED has reached more than 43,000 students, teachers and chaperones and is made possible by more than 300 volunteers and 30-plus organizations, businesses and local farms.

Thanks for this blog, however, goes to the best farming cub reporter I could have in my corner, (hear that, KS?), because she provided me with these United Dairy Industry of Michigan tidbits.

* There are approximately 2,100 Grade A dairy farms in Michigan.

* The average milking herd in Michigan has 150 cows.

* Michigan dairy herds produce approximately 7.7 billion pounds of milk on an annual basis.

* Dairy farming is the top ranking segment of Michigan’s number two industry: agriculture.

* The dairy industry in Michigan annually contributes $5.9 billion to the state’s economy.

* The average Michigan cow produces approximately 22,180 pounds of milk each year. That’s 2,579 gallons of milk a year or more than 8 gallons of milk every day of her milking period. That’s enough for 128 people to have a glass of milk every day!

* There are about 350,000 cows producing milk in Michigan. The large, black and white Holstein is the most common. Other breeds include: Guernsey, Jersey, Brown Swiss, Ayrshire, and Milking Shorthorn.

* In 2008, Michigan ranked 9th nationally in annual milk production, representing 4 percent of the total U.S. production.

I, for one, can't wait to attend Rural Education Days because every year, I learn something new.

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