“I actually love cows - that’s why I do what I do!”
Cows have been a big part of Matt’s upbringing and adult life. He shared, “Both of my grandparents were dairy farmers that milked cows for a living. My parents were involved in the dairy industry as well!” Matt reminisced on his first experience with cows, “I actually started showing cows in 4H when I was younger. My 8th grade year, after I showed a cow, I somehow convinced my dad to let me keep her and milk her. Then, I ended up milking 25 cows all through high school and college.”
Matt has been consulting with Barton Kiefer since August of 2012. He now works with dairy farmers across Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, Florida, and North Carolina. Even though he lives in Tennessee, Matt’s herds are spread throughout these five states. He typically spends two days in Georgia and Florida every week. He says “I enjoy working with these farms and feel like I have a role in them being profitable.”
“Barton Kiefer has provided me a space to feel like I’m an asset to the dairy industry. As an independent consultant, I’m not trying to sell the farmer anything, so I can offer an unbiased opinion. My job, as a nutritionist, directly influences the health of the cows, what they produce, and greatly impacts the over health of the herd. Nutrition plays a huge role in how much milk the cows give. So, my primary role is to stay on top of ingredients and help the dairy farmers find the best ingredients from the least expensive sources.”
Looking toward the future, maintaining a food supply within our country is going to be extremely important. People are getting further and further removed from agriculture and farming. Nutrition consultants play a big role in making sure our farms can maintain health and profitability, which is important for our farms and the U.S. as a whole.
“It means a great deal to me to get to be a part of the industry that I love so much.”