When I first learned I would be visiting Glo-Crest Dairy Farm, I had no idea what to expect because I had never been on a dairy farm before. Part city slicker, part suburbanite, the closest I had been to a farm in adulthood was through scenes in movies and television. While intrigued, as the Dietetic Internship Director for Emory University Hospitals, I was more excited to see the experience through the eyes of my dietetic interns as they enter the world of nutrition.
As we rode to the farm on an unseasonably cool and rainy day, none of us were prepared for the breathtaking beauty that greeted us as we pulled onto the farm. Forget movies, forget television. Far removed from the chaos, commotion and stresses of metro Atlanta is a farm seemingly unbothered by the bedlam and hurry of everyday life. Glo-Crest Dairy Farm is a mix of modern farming and the fundamental simplicity of farming methods passed through generations of appreciation for land, dairy cows’ care, and community.
Learning the effort and care taken to maintain the purity, integrity, and milk safety standards of the milk and dairy products produced on the farm directly from the farmer was eye-opening. As a member of the dying breed of adults who still get the health benefits of dairy by enjoying a glass of milk with meals, it was invaluable to see firsthand how the food I enjoy, the food I take for granted, is sustainably produced. My interns loved the experience and praised the dedication of the employees and farmers of Glo-Crest and their creamery, Mountain Fresh Creamery. I plan to take future classes of interns to have the same experience.
In a society where food is readily accessible, it’s easy to forget real people make our meals possible. I encourage everyone, at least once in their lifetime, to visit a dairy farm or any farm, to learn and see how food makes it from farm to table.
Michelle Gooden, RD, LD
Michelle Gooden works as the Dietetic Internship Coordinator for Emory Hospitals Dietetic Internship and as a Clinical Dietitian at Emory University Hospital. Clinically, she is primarily responsible for the medical nutrition therapy associated with neuro intensive care and neurosurgery. In her time at Emory, Michelle has served as an educator for dietetic interns, medical students, and other healthcare professionals. When not at Emory, Michelle volunteers her time as the Clinical Director of Health Promotions for Special Olympics Georgia.