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Master Farmer Extra: Meet the McCarty familyMaster Farmer Extra: Meet the McCarty family

Tom and Judy McCarty came to Kansas to find room to grow their family operation.

P.J. Griekspoor

February 22, 2019

6 Slides

Tom and Judy McCarty had a hard decision to make as a new century dawned.

The family farm in Pennsylvania where Tom grew up was landlocked and had no room to grow. Being able to survive on a small family operation, milking about 150 cows, was becoming increasingly difficult. The inability to grow meant there was no opportunity for even one of their four sons to come back to the farm.

When all four of their sons expressed an interest in coming back to a family farming operation, they had to either say “no way” or chart a new path to the future. They chose to re-locate to a place with boundless room for expansion. After much research, they chose northwest Kansas.

In 1999, they bought a wheat farm near Rexford in Thomas County and worked with experts at Kansas State University to design and build a dairy to milk 700 cows.

Today, that operation has grown to include a milk condensing plant that uses an evaporative process to remove and recycle 70% of the water in the processed milk. And now the family owns dairy operations in Scott City and Bird City, as well as Beaver City, Neb., and Celina, Ohio.

In 2010, they entered into a first-in-the-industry agreement with Dannon to provide them with condensed milk for their yogurt plant in Fort Worth, Texas. The McCarty’s latest operation in Ohio was opened to serve a Dannon plant about 15 miles away.

All of their operations are Validus Animal Welfare certified and non-GMO. Read the full story of their operation.

About the Author(s)

P.J. Griekspoor

Editor, Kansas Farmer

Phyllis Jacobs "P.J." Griekspoor, editor of Kansas Farmer, joined Farm Progress in 2008 after 18 years with the Wichita Eagle as a metro editor, page designer, copy desk chief and reporter, covering agriculture and agribusiness, oil and gas, biofuels and the bioeconomy, transportation, small business, military affairs, weather, and general aviation.

She came to Wichita in 1990 from Fayetteville, N.C., where she was copy desk chief of the Fayetteville Observer for three years. She also worked at the Pioneer Press in St. Paul, Minn. (1980-87), the Mankato Free Press in Mankato, Minn. (1972-80) and the Kirksville Daily Express in Kirksville, Mo. (1966-70).

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