The land of the Dorrigo Plateau, north of Armidale, is fertile and it rains every other day.Water bubbles out of the ground from springs, all the creeks have small cascades and the dams are always full.
This used to be perfect land for dairies and there were once nearly 100. Now there are less than 30 and the farmers themselves are ageing.
On a block where we have cattle, we can see the remnants of an old dairy and when I walk along the creek I find the top of a rusty milk churn with the name plate of a dairy farmer, long gone.
We meet a young man on the boundary fence. He is working the family dairy while his parents have a break further north. The family have been threatened and shaken by an invasion earlier in the year by protestors from Aussie Farms. but hopefully the new legislation will put a stop to this uncivilised behaviour.
In my local supermarket in Scone I refuse to buy the discounted milk and ask the staff how they can support such a move when the area is full of farmers.Here in the Hunter Valley too, dairy farms are disappearing, swallowed up by mines or just closed up because it is not profitable.
We try to buy Norco milk and support the dairy farmers . Otherwise we will suddenly get a shock to find that in Australia, we can’t buy fresh milk but have to rely on longlife milk as they do in Europe.