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Ryan Dennis

Ryan Dennis is the son of a New York dairy farmer and a literary writer whose early essays were originally published in Progressive Dairy.

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I spent most of my life talking to farmers. If it wasn’t my parents, then it was our neighbors or other families we ran into at shows, auctions or feed stores.

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According to the international dairy market site clal.it, the U.S. farmgate milk price in May 2020 dropped to a low of $13.60. That is nearly half of the current reported price at the time of writing this column.

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I both admire and hate people who have it all figured out.

I was glad to have grown up on a dairy farm for all the same reasons as anyone else: the independence, working with animals instead of people, having more responsibility than others.

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Hrönn took me out to the pasture to see their bred heifers. Her parents’ farm, Lundur, was similar to most Icelandic holdings, with cattle, sheep and horses.

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Another pint? I asked a friend of mine. He said he better not, because he had to paint his house the next day. I mentioned that a little home improvement was great to spruce up a place. He said his house was going to be torn down in a few months.

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The following isn’t going to be easy to read. If your initial impression is that it doesn’t belong in a farming magazine, there was a time I probably would have agreed with you. I hope you can see why I changed my mind.

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