Farmer Focus

Dante & Elise Carpenter

Hometown: Russell Springs, Kentucky

Meet father and daughter team, Dante and Elise Carpenter, owners and operators of fourth-generation KC Farm. They, along with their two employees, milk 90 Jersey cows and farm 1,100 acres in southern Kentucky. Dante’s favorite memory is when his dad brought home four Jersey cows in 1987. Up until that point, the family had only ever milked Holsteins. “This was the start of the Jersey cow legacy on our farm,” he says. For Dante and Elise, the most rewarding part of being a dairy farmer is receiving words of gratitude from consumers who share their love of Prairie Farms products, made possible in part by the work of KC Farms.

What do you like the most – and the least – about working as a dairy farmer?

The thing that I like most is going out into the field and finding that baby heifer calf, that twenty months down the road becomes a 90-point cow and gives a lot of milk that ends up on someones kitchen table. One of the things I like least about dairy farming is when the day comes that you must cull a cow that has given so much production and an asset for breeding and excellent offspring.

Describe how the work on the farm is shared or divided up in your family?

There are only two family members: father and daughter. My daughter is around during the summer and school breaks. There are two full-time employees that work on the farm year round. The secret to four of us running this farm is that any one of us can do any job at any time.

How do you think your farm’s business plan will change 10 years from now?

We are going to try and maintain. We are satisfied and diversified between beef and dairy. No major changes are anticipated for us in the near future.

During those days when things aren’t going well, what do you do to keep a positive attitude?

Being a dairy farmer requires a mental attitude of being prepared for anything at anytime. You expect the unexpected and know that anything could happen. You just don’t let things get you down because problems are usually short lived or there is a solution. If solutions don’t work, you take a moment to step back and analyze the situation before making a decision. If all else fails I remind myself not to get ”

What would you be doing if you were not a dairy farmer?

I would go full-time into beef cattle and grain farming.

 

What is your favorite breed of dairy cattle? Jersey

What is your favorite dairy product? Chocolate Milk

What is your favorite thing about being a dairy farmer? The “thank you’s” from consumers who love the products that are sourced with milk from my farm.

What is your favorite dairy-related memory? My favorite memory would have to be from 1987 when my dad purchased 4 Jersey cows one weekend. Before this time we were milking all Holsteins. This was the start of the Jersey cow legacy on our farm. From milking 4 Jersey cows then to around 90 today. The wholesome beginnings is what makes that memory so special.

Meet More of our Members: