Posted on September 18, 2019 by admin
SUFFIELD – State Representatives Tami Zawistowski (R-61) and Bill Simanski (R-62), members of legislature’s Rural Caucus, recently toured Hastings Farm with co-owner Susan Hastings to learn more about the challenges small dairy farms are facing in Connecticut.
“Susan Hastings provided a very informative tour,” said Rep. Zawistowski who is co-Chair of the Rural Caucus. “I was especially interested to learn about their DeLaval robotic milking machine and see how it works. They were early adopters of the technology, which I learned frees up time and resources to focus on producing wonderful yogurt, cheeses and milk. I was also impressed with the amount of data and information the machine can collect to make sure the cows are happy and healthy.”
Earlier in 2019, the farm was recognized as a ‘Century’ farm; having been family owned and operated in Suffield since 1916. The annual award is presented by the Connecticut Agricultural Information Council to s single winner each year to, “a farm that has been in family operation for more than 100 years, and has outstanding potential to be a successful business for another 100 years.”
Currently the farm has roughly 100 Holstein and Jersey cows and covers 400 acres of land that is owned or lease by the family. In addition to the milking robot, they also operate a more traditional style milking parlor.
Rep. Simanski commented, “Connecticut dairy farmers and small family farms are competing in a tough market. I was impressed to learn about their family history of farming starting with tobacco, then diversifying into dairy, natural beef and opening their store.”
Offerings including milk, Greek yogurt, hard cheeses and beef from Hastings Farm are available at their store on Hill Street open Monday through Saturday 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. For more information visit their website at www.hastingsfamilyfarm.com.