Farmer Focus

Sauter Family

Hometown: Cannon Falls, MN

Josh and Katie Sauter are Dairy Farmers of America co-op members and co-owners of third-generation Sauter Dairy. Together with their three children and Josh’s parents Mark and Roxanne, they milk 300 cows and farm 230 acres in southeastern Minnesota. In addition to helping out on the farm, Katie is a nurse at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

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

The thing I like the most about being a dairy farmer is everything it takes to developing a good cow from the mating through good nutrition in calf and heifer development and then making sure she is being fed the best quality feed to reach her full potential as a mature cow. The least is dealing with all the challenges of a cold snowy winter.

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

I farm with my parents Mark and Roxanne. I do most of the herd and health management and dad does most of the feeding. Roxanne is a retired school teacher and does most of the book work. Katie is a nurse and helps out when she can. We also employ 5 full time employees.

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

Mark will probably keep stepping back in more of the day to day part of the operation.

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

I have 3 young children Beatrix 5, Gabby 4, and Roy 2. Any day that they can come out and help do chores makes it a good day.

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

I am an assistant high school football coach in Cannon Falls so probably something with teaching or coaching.

 

What is your favorite breed of dairy cattle? Holstein

What is your favorite dairy product? Yogurt

What is your favorite thing about being a dairy farmer?Every time a new calf is born is exciting especially the replacement heifers. However we have been breeding quite a few cows to black angus and even these black calves I get excited to have because they are fun to raise up as feeders. It feels funny to be more excited for bull calves then heifers too.

What is your favorite dairy-related memory?When I got out of college and started buying cows on my own to bring into the business is my favorite memory.

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