“If everyone knew how much work we put in to taking care of our cows, there would be less fear of agriculture” – Terry Norden
Over the years, Arps Dairy has been privileged to work with many outstanding producers. The Norden family is a great example of one such family. Since 1905, the Norden family has worked diligently to maintain a successful farming operation. They have been supplying milk to Arps dairy since 1970. Although the farm has seen many updates and improvements, the family’s foundational values have stayed the same; “work hard and continue to be dedicated to the industry”.
Located just outside of Napoleon, the Norden’s milk 50 to 55 head of Holstein cows three times a day. Mr. Terry Norden feels blessed that he has been able to work on the farm his entire life. He raised his own family with the same ideals he gained from growing up in the dairy industry. His pride for the family as well as the farm is apparent as he describes his dairy operation. When it comes to the cattle, Terry understands keeping the cows comfortable will benefit the farm by increased milk production. To ensure this, Terry uses sand in the barns to help keep the bacteria count down and to keep the cows clean. Further, the cows relax in free stalls and eat five times a day. As the cows feed on nutritious rations, they are kept comfortable by sprayers attached to the feeders. Fans throughout the barns move fresh air for added comfort. Finally, they recently installed a cow brush which is designed to keep cows clean and comfortable.
In addition to their commitment to the dairy, Terry and his family are also large supporters of the community. They are involved with the local 4-H, Henry County Dairy Producers, and the Tinora Young Farmers. Each year they enjoy assisting at the fair, serving shakes at the Shake Stand. The Norden Farm has been instrumental in educating people of all ages about the dairy industry. They give tours to various elementary, high school, and college students. The family enjoys the tours. They state it is good to share time with the older people who like to ask questions and the overall excitement apparent in most of the people as they learn about the dairy industry and their farm. Yet, there are additional students who visit the farm; Stotzenberger College has been coming to visit the Nordens farm for years. These students are able to vaccinate the cattle and further their understanding of what happens on the farm. Another opportunity to serve the community is hiring local young people to work on the farm each year.
The Norden dairy received the Century Farm Award. They continue to create a strong productive farm and are proud to have reached 99 pounds of milk per day from their cows. Both are impressive accomplishments for the Norden family.
The Norden’s children continue the family dedication to agriculture. Terry’s son has worked on a combining crew going across the county and his daughter is studying to become a Veterinarian. He says the assistance of his wife, Karen, is an instrumental part of the operations success. She rises at 4:30 in the morning to milk cows and help all day long with additional tasks. When asked about changes the family like to make on the farm; Terry says, he can see the next generation pushing for robotic milkers. He believes robotics may be more efficient but admits the family is quite happy with the farm as it is for now.
When asked for his favorite part of farming, Terry claims his favorite part is he gets to be his own boss. It also is nice to work hard and see the outcome of the work. Terry says “If everyone knew how much work we put in to taking care of our cows, there would be less fear of agriculture”. “The fear of antibiotics would be lessened if they knew how much the milk was tested to make sure there aren’t any antibiotics in it. The cow is tested, the tank is tested, and the entire load is tested.” The Nordens take pride in their milk and want to ensure the consumers are receiving a healthy and wholesome dairy product.
When working with Arps Dairy, Terry appreciates the company is local. If he needs to get in contact with someone, he can pick up the phone and get someone local to talk too. He also appreciates when Arps helps with the tours, providing milk to the visitors to their farm.
Arps is honored and proud to work with the Norden family dairy to provide our consumers with the best dairy products available.