CARROLL — Nothing compliments a sweet summer day like an ice cream cone. And, a key ingredient in ice cream is, of course, the milk.
Across the state of Nebraska there are 130 registered dairy farms, according to Dwaine Junck.
Junck and wife, Priscilla, own and operate the Junck Dairy Farm located north of Carroll, a business in its 25th year of operation.
Junck is a third-generation farmer. He has seen how the dairy industry has changed from farmers doing hand milking to some operations now milking cows with robots.
The couple, along with their four children, know a dairy farm is a 24-hour, seven-day a week profession.
With the help of their hired crew, the couple's herd is milked three times during the course of a day.
A typical day on the Junck Family Dairy begins at around 4 a.m., when 18 cows at a time are brought into the milking parlor. The crew wipes down the cow and cleans off debris such as dirt or wood-chips. The cow's udders are tipped into an iodine solution, wiped off, and the milking machine is placed on the cow.
Once each of the cows has its turn at a stall in the milking parlor, clean up begins; with the parlor being washed, and all parts of the milking machine sanitized. Once clean up is completed, it’s time to begin milking the herd again.
On average, a dairy cow can eat around 100 pounds of food and drink about 50 gallons of water a day. An average cow can produce around 85 pounds or 10 gallons of milk a day.
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