Farm Feature- Kerr Family Dairy

Kerr Family photo

The Kerr family has been in the dairy business since 1927. As founding members of the UDA co-op, their first dairy in Arizona was located on Kyrene and Guadalupe roads in Tempe. Third generation dairy farmer, Bill Kerr, started his herd in 1980 with 15 cows. By 1990, his herd was large enough to build his own dairy facility in Buckeye. Bill with his Wife, Sine, and their son Wes and his wife, Lauren, are now part owners of the dairy and milk 1,200 cows.

Wes Kerr has always been fascinated by genetics and started breeding their herd with a ‘polled’ gene. Polled cows are naturally hornless which takes away the need for dehorning. After introducing the hornless gene a few years ago, their milking herd is about 45% polled.

As with all dairy farms, Kerr Family Dairy works hard to keep cows healthy and comfortable. From weekly vet visits, monthly feed checks, shade and misting systems, and regular hoof trimming are all ways that the Kerrs keep their cows healthy and strong. They consider the cows as part of their family and treat them with the utmost care and respect.

When asked about common misconceptions in the dairy industry, Bill was quick to point out that there are no antibiotics in milk. Dairy farms only use antibiotics when their cows need them and the treated cow will be separated from the herd until her milk is cleared of any residues.

After all these years, Bill still loves being a dairy farmer. Each day comes with its basic chores and duties but inevitably something different and unique will happen which keeps it exciting.