Farm: Basinger Farm
Location: Okeechobee, St. Lucie, Highlands, Lafayette, and Suwannee, Florida
Date of Origination: 1958
Commodities: Holstein, Brown Swiss and Jersey Dairy Cattle
Woody and Grace Larson own and operate Basinger Farm in Highlands County. Basinger Farm was originally known as Larson Dairy Number 1 until 2001 when Woody and his wife began operating it as what it is today. Since 1970, the farm is a dairy operation.
Basinger Farm has implemented BMPs for at least the past 40 years. BMPs are a set of guidelines that advise producers on how to manage the water, nutrient, and pesticides they are using to reduce agriculture’s impact on the state’s natural resources. Some of the BMPs that have been implemented include fencing cattle from waterways, riparian buffers control run off from all dairy pastures with extensive berms and lagoons with irrigation to recycle water.
Woody is actively involved in the community as a member of the First Baptist church, Okeechobee County Ag Council, Okeechobee Farm Bureau, Southeast Milk and Okeechobee Cattlemen’s Association. When asked why he believes it is important to protect our environment, Woody responded, “We make our living from farming so a healthy farm helps provide for us. Farming is a generational thing; protecting the resources for future generations just seems the right thing to do.”