Cornucopia has conducted flyover investigations of numerous “organic” dairies over the years, including Boehning Dairy and Hilltop Dairy. Brian Boehning is the president of these two contiguous operations which use the same mailing address in Earth, Texas. Boehning is also the president of the more well-known County Line Dairy a few miles away (location secured through the EPA database).
Earth is in the Texas Panhandle, an arid region of the country known for its desert-like conditions and irrigated crop circles. It is difficult to imagine that legitimate certified organic dairies could exist in this environment, where some pastures are planted with annual grasses that burn out in the extreme heat. Still, the Texas Department of Agriculture, backed by the USDA National Organic Program (NOP), has deemed the practices “organic.”
The images and formal complaint we submitted to the NOP regarding Boehning and Hilltop Dairies were officially ignored, although it should be noted that the NOP had taken secret enforcement actions against this operator (Cornucopia has had to sue the USDA to force the release of documents related to the incident and the litigation continues).
We think consumers, and legitimate organic farmers, can see the trouble with this setup themselves: