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Farmer puts his cows up for 'adoption' as drought hits


An Australian farmer had made a desperate plea as drought conditions sweep the area - by asking people to 'adopt' a cow on his farm.

The New South Wales farmer, John Fairley who runs Country Valley Milk, just an hour from Sydney, made the plea to help his farm through the drought.

He's looking for support to feed his cows for the next few months.

Anyone who adopts a cow or calf you will receive a photo of the cow and can name it. Fairley is even offering that anyone who adopts a cow can visit him and the cow on his farm in Picton. And, if you're feeling up for some work you can milk the cow and feed the calves while you're there.

Mr Fairley put the call out on Facebook and said he has been overwhelmed and humbled by the response.

He told the Camden-Narellan Advertiser that it will cost Aus$1350 per cow to feed them until the end of September and he has 130 cows to feed.

Adopt a Cow @country_valley and help farmer John Fairley get through the DROUGHT.... All information & story 👉

Posted by Pepe Saya on Monday, May 7, 2018

“This is by no means a minimum amount for adoption. I’m just trying to let you know the scale of my problem.”

John, who runs the farm with his 83-year-old father said he had to swallow his pride to ask for help.


“The realisation that we will be fully [hand] feeding cows, all winter, has arrived,” he said.

“Even if it rains next week and we get crops in, it will get cold and we will still have no feed.

“My 83 year old Dad said he had never seen it worse than this.

“One of the options we put on the table to get through the drought was to shut the dairy down. I just can’t do it."

Pepe Magazine who photographed the farm two years ago said it wasn't until they went to the farm recently that they saw the usually lush green green paddocks, flowing creek and full dam as bare dirt.

The Country Valley Milk farm in Picton has been in the family for six generations and the Fairley’s dairy farm has more than 100 head of Friesian/Jesery cross cattle on 300 acres.

The family bottles the milk and sells it on site, rather than through a processor, and they buy milk from other farmers.

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