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Michigan Dairy Farmer

Jennifer Lewis

“I think a farm is one of the best places where you can raise children. They not only learn responsibility, but they learn the process of taking care of something …”

Jennifer Lewis
Dairy Farmer

Name: Jennifer Lewis
Location: Jonesville, Michigan
Years farming: My husband Bruce and I have been farming the majority of our lives.
My family: Bruce’s grandparents Wayne and Vivian Lewis started the farm in 1941, having moved to Michigan from Ohio. His parents, Roger and Norma Lewis took over the farm in the mid-1960’s and then we took over in 1995. My husband and I have three children. Adam is 20 and graduated from Michigan State University in 2009, and then purchased the grandparents’ homestead and lives there, but works full-time for the farm. Brittany is 18, and attends Lansing Community College. Conner is 16, and is a sophomore at Jonesville High School, and works on the farm.
How I came to be a farmer: Both of us were raised on farms; Bruce on a dairy farm and I on a sheep farm, with exposure to beef and turkeys, so we’ve devoted much of our lives to farming.
The best thing about being a farmer: The ability to see firsthand the raising of livestock and crops, and knowing that you are an integral part of feeding the world.
My personal philosophy on farming: To take care of everything we deal with, from land, to water, to air, and make sure we leave it in better condition than we found it.

Dairy Production in Michigan and the United States
  • In 2008, Michigan ranked 9th in milk production, producing 7.8 billion pounds of milk with farm sales of over $1.5 billion.
  • According to USDA, about 99 percent of all U.S. dairy farms are family-owned and operated.
  • There are more than 60,000 dairy farms in America and the average herd size is 135 cows.
  • A heifer is a female dairy cow that has not given birth to a calf.
  • Dairy cows produce an average of 7 - 8 gallons of milk each day.
  • Research shows that drinking chocolate milk after exercising can help replenish muscles and aid recovery as well as, or even better, than popular sports drinks.
  • According to a study by Michigan State University, the dairy industry in Michigan annually contributes $5.9 billion to the state's economy.

For more information about dairy production in Michigan, please visit

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