Welcome to an Amazing Story of Community Support

In the morning on Thursday, February 15th the roof on part of the barn at the Turner Dairy Farm in Waitsfield collapsed from the weight of snow. Many people from the community responded to the crisis despite the fact that much of the community itself was buried under over three feet of snow that had fallen in the past 24 hours.

Community Celebration

At the Turner Farm

  • Hamburgers
  • Hot Dogs
  • Veggie Burgers
  • Cider
  • Farm Fresh Milk

Thank you ceremony and barn dedication at 12:30pm (FREE and Open to the Public).

IMPORTANT PARKING INFORMATION: Please park across the street from the Turner Farm at the Reynolds property. People will be on hand to direct you on where to park. If you have people in your car who will have difficulty walking across the street, please pull into the Turner property, drop them off, and park across the street. There is limited parking available right at the Turner Farm.

How You Can Help

  • Volunteer to help with the building construction
  • Make a donation
  • Contribute money to the donation jars around town
  • Shop/dine at area businesses that are making donations to the funds
  • Volunteer to prepare food for the work crews once construction begins
  • Kids can get involved in the Adopt a Cow Program in the schools
  • Contribute to the calf replacement fund

The information of this website provides background, information on fundraising, and rebuilding the barn, and will tell you what you can do to help.

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Background

The Turner’s operate a dairy farm that is located on Route 100 in Waitsfield, VT They are currently milking about 35 cows twice a day. The Turners have been transitioning to an organic farm and are due to receive their organic certification on May 18th. Conventional dairy farmers get paid around $11 a hundred weight for their milk; organic farmers receive over $30 per hundred weight for their milk. There is a little over 12 gallons of milk per hundredweight. Clearly it pays to become a certified organic dairy, but the transition process is costly. The farmers must pay higher prices for feed while receiving conventional milk prices.

The roof of the main barn where the milking cows are is still in tact. The roof that collapsed is the L part of the barn that houses dry cows and heifers. Five cows were killed. Two cows were injured and are in Cabot, VT. The rest of the cows from the damaged part of the barn were transferred to an organic farm in Middlebury. The daily cost for keeping the cows in Middlebury is high, but it is necessary that they be in an organic farm in order to maintain the eligibility for organic certification.

But don’t the Turners have Insurance?? While the Turners have basic insurance, it is rare for insurance to cover this type of damage (called “broad peril”) given the age of the barn (this has been confirmed by the two insurance agencies in town). The Turners have been told by their insurance adjuster that they will not receive any compensation for the damage to the barn. They will receive compensation for the five cows who were killed and vet bills associated with those five cows, but will not receive compensation for the unborn calves or any vet bills incurred for animals who survived the tragedy.