Mac campus dairy wins regional award for milk excellence

Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue farm earns prestigious industry award for third year in a row
Christine Butler, Pierre-Marc Deschamps, Eduardo Fernandez
L to R: Christine Butler, Director of Administration for the Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, along with Pierre-Marc Deschamps and Eduardo Fernandez, Animal Science Technicians at the Macdonald Campus Dairy Unit, accepting the Agropur milk quality awardMarie-Eve Lepage

The Macdonald Campus Dairy Unit has been awarded the title of Regional Club of Excellence Milk Quality Champion by dairy industry giant Agropur.

Accepting the award at a regional meeting on November 25, Natasha Lapointe, Animal Science Coordinator of the Dairy Unit, credited her team’s commitment to maintaining high standards.

“What makes us successful is our team, who are dedicated to their work and to the health and well-being of our animals,” said Lapointe, who was honoured earlier this year with the Principal’s Award for Administrative and Support Staff in the Technical, Library Assistants and Nurses Category.

Located at Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, the farm, which has a milking herd of 75 mostly Holstein cows, has been a part of McGill since 1907. In addition to producing award-winning milk, it is an important site for research and education within the Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.

Enduring success in challenging times

Each year, Agropur’s regional milk quality awards are presented to just 14 farms out of a field of more than 2,900 dairy producers across Quebec, Ontario, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador. The regional champions are decided after a rigorous analysis of milk quality and a dairy facility evaluation.

No stranger to the accolade, the Mac campus farm has won the award eight times since 2008, including the last three years straight – a feat made all remarkable by the additional challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’re very proud to achieve and maintain such high-quality standards, especially with the added challenge of research, teaching and turnover in student employees,” Lapointe said.

The Milk Quality Grand Champion will be revealed at Agropur’s annual general meeting on February 8, 2023.