If you spent millions of dollars on a “grass-based dairy” wouldn’t you expect better looking pasture than this? If this grass was any thinner some of these here politicians might actually be able to see through it. “Pasture” with Aurora’s massive dairy barns in the background. Aurora’s application to expand the stocking level at this “farm” to 4500 animals on 591 acres. That’s 7.5 cows per acre. If you believe that is a credible stocking level anywhere in the country, let alone semi-arid Colorado, The Cornucopia Institute would like to ask you if you would be interested in purchasing the Brooklyn bridge (actually, the stocking level is undoubtedly higher when you take away the acreage devote to the building site, roads, feed storage and other support functions.) Everyone involved in grass-based dairy production knows that the quality of the feed available directly impacts the quantity and quality of milk product. Would you spend millions of dollars on these buildings if your cattle were on pasture most of the time? So much for Aurora’s past claims that their cattle were outside year round. More lush pasture – but this time at least livestock is present. How many head of cattle do you think could be supported, with a stocking density of 7-10 cows per acre, on this quality of pasture? Spotty pasture with cows confined to the feedlot in the background at the Aurora High Plains facility. The company has presented this as a model pasture-based dairy. Aurora would brag that all their animals were outside year round. But they have build one of the most massive dairy barns in the U.S. And their cows aren’t outside the majority of the spring, summer and fall grazing season. Organic? Flies by the thousands are clustering at the home of this neighbor to Aurora’s High Plains dairy. Imagine trying to keep these little beasts from swarming into the house every time you leave or enter. The neighbors have complained to local regulators trying to get relief. An invasion of flies is plaguing neighbors or Aurora’s High Plains dairy. How many family scale grass-based dairies create this type of problem for their neighbors? Neighbors are calling for a reduction in the number of cows on the farm (4500) and/or a revocation of its permits. A special permit hearing for the Aurora High Plains facility. Note that it’s for 4500 cattle on 591 acres. Pathetic looking pasture at the Aurora High Plains facility. Dairy cattle graze on large bales of hay in yellow feeders. This would not meet the USDA’s legal definition for pasture as defined in the federal organic regulations. Poor quality pasture. The thousands of cows on Aurora’s High Plains dairy are feeding instead inside the barn.