SYRACUSE, N.Y. — More than 58,000 students tuned in to American Dairy Association North East’s three live virtual farm tours this fall to learn about and build trust in dairy.
“Our virtual farm tour program continues to evolve and grow with nearly 550,000 viewers since we started in 2018,” said ADA North East CEO John Chrisman. “We’re so fortunate to have dairy farmers who are willing to share their stories and help students make the connection with those who are producing the milk and dairy products they enjoy at school and at home.”
Jared Kurtz of Kurtland Farms in Elverson, Pa., spoke to more than 18,000 students; John and Chris Albano from Albano Farms, Stamford, N.Y., hosted 17,000 students; and Mark Murray from Murcrest Farm in Copenhagen, N.Y., had 23,445 live viewers for his tour.
Each farmer hosted two live tours on the same day. One was geared toward Pre-K through Grade 5, and the other is more advanced for students in Grades 6-12. Both tours offer free corresponding lesson plans that meet Common Core Standards for teachers to use in their classrooms.
“I always enjoy being able to host tours on our farm, whether virtually or in person, and this time was no different,” said Kurtz. “It’s a rewarding experience to be able to share our farm’s story and provide a peek inside how a modern fairy farm operates.”
Am elementary school teacher whose students watched one of the tours, said, “The tour was perfect and engaging for my third graders. The farmer was very knowledgeable but kept things easy to follow.”
“It was a great way to connect with a lot of students, and it was very free-flowing,” said Chris Albano.
Prior to the tour at Murcrest, ADA North East secured an in-studio media interview with WWNY in Watertown, N.Y., for Murray who took a calf on set. The piece garnered nearly 22,000 television impressions a had the potential online reach of more than 240,000. Securing and preparing dairy farmers for media interviews is one part of ADA North East’s efforts to bolster dairy’s reputation.
“I loved hosting the tour and I would recommend it to any dairy farmer who is interested in connecting with consumers. it’s a great way to reach thousands of students at one time,” said Murray.
Recordings of the tours can be found at American Dairy.com, under “Virtual Farm Tours.” For more information about the Virtual Farm Tour program, contact American Dairy Association North East at 315.472.9143.
–American Dairy Association North East