Hosting farm media representatives on their Lakeside Dairy operation in Kings County, California on the eve of the World Ag Expo nearby in Tulare this week, Mike and Manuel Monteiro offered a glimpse of the success that innovation,
careful study and hard work can accomplish. The brothers represent the third generation of their dairying family, which now operates three dairies within a few miles of each other.
Lakeside is the largest of the three. Located in the southern portion of California’s Central Valley, it produces an average of 35,000 gallons of milk each day. The farm is home to 3,500 cows, along with 1,200 acres of alfalfa, wheat and silage corn. As Mike describes in the interview later in this post, the brothers consider themselves
serious businessmen who happen to be in the dairying business. They obviously love what they do to provide fresh milk to a growing California population.
Many innovations have made this dairy extremely efficient, and Mike and Manuel are hands-on owner-operators who continue to seek out and implement new ideas that can increase efficiencies and profits into the future. As Mike also explains in his comments in this interview, it hasn’t always been that way. The timing of their growth has in some cases coincided with some of the nation’s toughest times in recent years, and as a result they’ve grown serious loyalty to the brands, bankers and suppliers who have stuck with them along the trail.
Gary Cooper talks with Mike Monteiro about their dairy business and how they started.
They own eight Hesston hay tools and have installed a state-of-the-art SPG solar system to help support the farm that includes an 80-cow milking rotary system and three 7,000-gallon
storage tanks. The solar system was a huge step of progress for Lakeside Dairy, and any type of farmer should enjoy hearing how the system came about and what it means to the stability and profitability of this family business.
AgNet West’s hats are off to these two innovative brothers, and to the AGCO crew and SPG solar representatives for their part of the tour plan too. The afternoon concluded with a great meal in the hay barn right there near the center of the operation as the sun set over the mountains to the west. We appreciate their time to show us around and answer our questions so we could share their story with other farmers in the region. Thanks guys, it was a great day on the farm!