Dutch Hollow Farm
I worked in an office for eight months after graduating from Cornell. Didn’t like sitting at a desk. I like working with cows. Then I asked myself, do I want to bust my butt working for someone else’s farm, or do I want to do that for my family? I want to be around people as dedicated as I am.
– Emily Chittenden
Paul Chittenden is a third-generation farmer who farms with his three sons, Brian, Alan, and Nate, and numerous grandchildren on Dutch Hollow Farm, the biggest herd member in Hudson Valley Fresh. While the Chittenden family is of course known for their premium quality, high butterfat content milk, they are also equally known for their love of Jerseys and their reputation as one of the premiere Jersey breeders in the world.
“My dad got his first jersey in 1925,” Paul continues. “It’s been Jerseys ever since. My grandfather had maybe a dozen cows and when I finished high school in 1962, we were milking 300. My dad was probably as progressive as any dairyman. He was always looking down the road, where are we going, what are we doing.”
These days Dutch Hollow milks 700 cows three times a day, every day, producing around 47,000 pounds of milk, or about 5,000 gallons every day. And their system is designed to keep that milk as fresh and clean as possible. “Every drop passes through the filter and we get it to under 41 degrees within two hours of milking. Our milk doesn’t even touch the air until it leaves the farm,” says one of Paul’s son Nate, who manages the calves with his niece Emily, both graduates of Cornell’s College of Agricultural and Life Sciences.
The Chittenden family is constantly striving to use what they know to farm smarter. “If we’re not looking for ways to improve things, we’re not going to stay in business. This isn’t some God-given right to be farmers. You have to be profitable, efficient, and passionate.” The family continues to look forward in their goal to produce high quality milk in a progressive way and present the next generation the opportunity to continue the family legacy.
Notable Awards and Community Involvement:
- New York State Dairy of Distinction – a state program that identifies farms that are well kept and well managed.
- 2014 National Master Breeder Award from National Dairy Shrine.
- 2012 National Master Breeder Award, 2010 Distinguished Service Award, host to the 1995 National Convention Sale as part of the American Jersey Cattle Association.
- Nationally ranked by the American Jersey Cattle Association for milk production, as well as high protein and fat component levels.
- Brian Chittenden currently serves on the Stuyvesant Town Board and is the current President of the New York State Jersey Cattle Breeders Association.
- Alan Chittenden serves on the National Board for the American Jersey Cattle Association as a 3rd generation Director and volunteers locally as a 4H leader.
- Nate Chittenden was the recipient of the first-ever Cornell Hometown Alumni Award, recognizing his involvement in his local community, and actively volunteers in 4H, specifically in coaching the county “Dairy Bowl” team.
- Emily and Cassie are the first of the 3rd generation at Dutch Hollow, 5th involved in dairy farming, to have an interest in coming back home to the farm following their graduation from Cornell’s Animal Science program. Emily is currently full-time at the farm, working alongside her dad and uncles, and while Cassie currently has an off-farm job involved in the agricultural industry, she helps on the home farm when she can.
- Farmers Assuring Responsible Management program participant – ensures thorough protocols are in place and third party animal welfare audits are conducted.
- Super Milk Award recipient for the past ten years.
- Active supporters of and volunteers in 4H – over 80 years of cumulative leadership between Paul, his dad, and sons Alan and Nathan.
Dutch Hollow Farm