The Hails family now owns 50 acres and farms a total of 450 acres. They own 100 goats and 55 cows. The goat herd consists of many breeds, including LaMancha, Toggenburg, Alpine, Saanen, and Nubian. The cow herd consists of Ayreshire, Normande, Jersey/Holstein cross, Jersey and Brown Swiss. The cows' feed program is grass-based, meaning that their main diet is hay, baleage, silage, and pasture spring through late fall. The cows are milked in a parlor, as are the goats (separately, of course!) and the cows are intensively rotationally grazed spring through fall. The cows enjoy being outside even in the winter. The goats have pasture as well, and are housed in a high tunnel which has been excellent for their health, due to the wonderful ventilation and natural light.
The cows are fed a 16% mixed ration and each cow receives only 5-10 pounds of grain a day – even less in the pasture months. Most conventional dairies feed their cows in excess of 40 pounds a day. The grain is free of bone meal (animal parts) and BSTs (hormones that cause an animal to milk like her lactation has just begun). The goats also receive a mixed ration.