If you’ve ever wondered where the food you eat comes from, how it’s made, and why it tastes so delicious, head to Abbotsford, where, just off Highway 1, you’ll find EcoDairy in partnership with Science World, the first demonstration farm of its kind in Canada and Science World’s first permanent satellite facility.
EcoDairy’s happy herd of 50 cows produce milk for Vitala products, like milk (of course!), yogurt, cheese and ice cream. At the innovative and interactive education facility, which promotes exciting advances in agricultural technology and environmental sustainability, you can meet the cows, see firsthand how things are done on a dairy farm and even try your hand at milking with EcoDairy’s mascot, Vicki the Cow.
Start your tour in EcoDairy’s Moozanine, which leads into the Discovery Centre and its interactive exhibits designed by the amazing team at Science World. You can take a journey through a cow’s digestive system (did you know they have four stomachs?) and learn how what comes out (manure) is cleverly reused. As the first dairy farm in B.C. to install an anaerobic digester, EcoDairy is able to turn their cow’s manure into three things: electricity to help power the farm, fertilizer for their crops and a soft, fibrous material that they use to make cow mattresses so their herd can have a comfy place to sleep. Now that’s an efficient use of waste!
Next, you’ll get to see Robbie the Robotic Milker in action, as you head into the Observation Room and see cows voluntarily lining up to be milked. The robotic milker recognizes each cow through the transponder around their neck and allows them to decide when they want to be milked. It also crosses one task off the farmer’s list, provides a more hygienic environment for milk production because it washes and dries the cow’s udder before milking, and offers traceability for Vitala products.
Continue your tour from the Observation Room into the Dairy Barn where you can meet Annabelle, Brooke, Harriett and the rest of their Holstein and Jersey cow friends, and watch them take turns at the Cow Brush Station, where a cow-activated rotating brush gives them a feel-good back scratch.
The eco-friendly building also uses collected rainwater to water their green roof, where you’ll see their adorable goats grazing on the grass! You can visit even more cute critters at EcoDairy’s petting zoo, and head to the u-pick pumpkin patch – just in time for Halloween.
From now to October 31, on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at either 11 a.m. or 2 p.m., EcoDairy is running a special promotion, the Know Your Food campaign, to highlight the benefits of choosing healthy, high quality, locally produced food.
For only $25 per adult, the Know Your Food package includes all-day admission to the Discovery Centre, a fully guided EcoDairy experience, a product tasting featuring their exclusive Fall-Harvest inspired ice cream and other tasty treats, plus a gift bag containing a selection of Vitala products to take home.
Written by Catherine Roscoe Barr, BSc Neuroscience, a Vancouver-based wellness coach, certified as a personal trainer, fitness instructor and older adult specialist, founder of The Life Delicious: the science of health, happiness and productivity, TMAC BC co-chair, and freelance writer. She can be found jogging with her adorable dog, dining with her fabulous husband or voraciously reading anywhere comfy.
Advertorial. If you are interested in sponsored content, please contact us.