‘There are ghosts in the land’: how US mega-dairies are killing off small farms
A collapse in the number of dairy farmers in states such as Minnesota is destroying livelihoods and hollowing out rural life
In late January last year, dairy farmers filled a pub in the tiny town of Greenwald, Minnesota (population 238). Organisers from the Land Stewardship Project – a sustainable agriculture nonprofit – expected 50 people to attend, but 130 showed up from all corners of the state.
Dr Richard Levins, professor emeritus of applied economics at the University of Minnesota, addressed the event, which served as part elegy for the thousands of small family-owned dairies lost in recent years and part rallying cry for those remaining, despite the odds.