Winners of the inaugural FARM Excellence Awards announced at annual meeting

The National Dairy Farmers Assuring Responsible Management (FARM) Program announced the winners for the FARM Excellence Awards. The Awards were established to recognize farms and evaluators demonstrating excellence in their engagement with the FARM Program.

Borst Dairy LLC

Animal Care & Antibiotic Stewardship

Rochester, MN | AMPI

Borst Family Dairy LLC of Rochester, Minnesota, is owned by third and fourth generation dairy farmers – brothers Larry and Matt, and Matt’s sons Kevin and Kyle. Together with their families, the Borsts know how important cow care is for the dairy to continue to thrive. Since the 1940s, the family’s approach has been reflected in the farm’s mission: “To be committed to caring for our animals and land with integrity and pride to serve wholesome dairy products to our consumers.”

The Borsts have grown their herd while continuing to raise the bar for animal care. Today, they milk 230 cows, all of which are raised on the farm. They prioritize disease prevention through clear protocols, practice mindful use of antibiotics, and work to improve cow comfort.

Through their participation in the FARM Animal Care program, the Borsts have created strong protocols to help with consistency on the dairy. Improvements to treatment plans and training have helped in areas like pain mitigation for disbudding and family employee management.

For the Borsts, every little thing matters when it comes to animal care.

Willow Behrer Farms

Workforce Development

Spruce Creek, PA | Land O Lakes

Willow Behrer Farms LLC is owned and operated by Michael Behrer and his son Allen the 4th and 5th generation to farm the land in Central Pennsylvania that was originally settled in 1892.

As their participation in the FARM Program progressed, managers at Willow Behrer began using video, apps, and their onboarding process to transform the on-farm team of employees into a superior dairy workforce capable of the highest standard in cow care, milking procedures, and calf care. Willow Behrer worked with their FARM evaluator to identify resources that could be tailored to the farm’s specific best management practices.

Canon Dairy

Environmental Stewardship

West Middlesex, PA | DFA

Canon Dairy is owned by Mark, Marie, Josie and Trent Canon in West Middlesex, Pennsylvania. The Canon’s have been in the dairy business since the early 1900s, making Mark, who took over in 1981, and his son, Trent, the 4th and 5th generations to farm there. Trent’s passion for conservation has been a major part of the Canon’s current environmental initiatives.

As they have made improvements on their farm, the Canon’s have used many of the resources available through the FARM Environmental Stewardship program.

In addition to the sustainable infrastructure in place in the barns, the conservation mindset on Canon Dairy extends to their planting strategies and manure management. The Canons are industry leaders who have not only fully embraced environmentally sustainable conservation practices throughout their dairy but have shared their passions and the ideals of the FARM Environmental Stewardship program with other dairy producers.

Tim Boeck


Land O’ Lakes

For more than 30 years, Tim Boeck has worked with the Land O’ Lakes Cooperative in several different roles. Currently as a FARM Evaluation Specialist, he conducts evaluations and works with farmers across the Midwest on operations of all sizes.

Recently, Tim assisted a farm during an animal welfare crisis. Through the entire process, from the first phone call, through the third-party audit and beyond, his calmness, compassion and empathy went above and beyond to provide support to the farm.

Boeck shows that same dedication to all the farms he works with. He aids farmers in demonstrating and documenting excellent animal care. His dedication to his farmer members and passion for the dairy industry knows no bounds.