July 14, 2011

Underwood considers benefits of 10,000 cow dairy

By Brenda L. Schaefer, BHG News Service

Can Underwood area farmers and the community benefit from building a 10,000 wet cow dairy facility? An informational meeting was held Wednesday, July 6 to help answer that and other similar questions. Ralph Friebel, a developer out of Jamestown, represents an investment group considering potential sites to build five or six Frontier Dairies across North Dakota. Friebel spoke with a dozen Underwood residents to explain the facility’s needs and answer questions. Although no definite plans are in place, the group is looking for 320 acres of farm land on which to build the facility. It would house 10,000 wet cows, 2,000 dry cows, and 16,000 heifers which is two years of calf crops. Friebel said, “We have not identified specific locations, but we are looking for locations close to water and feed options. We don’t want to build close to residential areas, but we need to have easy access to highways for transportation needs and we need access to three-phase power.” The North Dakota Water Commission suggested the group consider drawing water out of the Missouri. The Missouri currently has plenty of water to draw from. The proximity to the Missouri River, the Blue Flint Ethanol Plant, Great River Energy, and Highway 83 and the railroad makes Underwood a good area to consider.

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