BOWLING GREEN, Ky. — There are about 60 gentle giants on Chaney’s Dairy Barn in Bowling Green.
Carl Chaney grew up here and over the years, things have changed on this Jersey cow farm.
“We’ve got quite a bit of technology here. You got to realize back in 1940, dad started milking cows here by hand. By 1948, he was milking 14 cows per hand and that’s when we got electricity,” Chaney said,
Now, robots are helping out with some of the farm chores.
“We have a robot that milks our cows, we have a Rumba for the cows that pushes the feed up to them 24 hours a day, we have another robot, right over there, I call it ‘poopy loopy’ because it makes loops and it picks up poop and it takes it and dumps it in the tank and it keeps the concrete nice and clean,” Chaney said.
This is helping the farm operate more efficiently.
“It gives us more flexibility. We’re able to do other things, we’re able to work in the field we’re able to keep an eye on the cows, for me personally, I’m able to spend a little extra time up at the dairy barn, with the ice cream.”
After June second, it’s possible Chaney will spend more time up at the ice cream shop on his farm.
That’s when it will be featured on Guy Fieri’s All-American Road Trip.
The well-known American restauranter made a stop on his road trip series.
A feature Chaney hopes will cast a light on the decline of dairy farms.
“We’re hoping that they really get some good information on agriculture, because, dairy, in 2000 there were 2100 dairy farms in the state of Kentucky, we’re now below 400, the average consumer is now about four generations away from the farm, so we hope that people can see what’s going on.”
A reality the fourth-generation farmer has witnessed first hand, which motivated him and his wife to open up the popular icecream shop on their farm in 2003.
“There is nothing better than selling a product that is so nutritional and so wholesome, there’s nothing better than that. But still, there’s a lot of times it doesn’t pay the bills. So the icecream store, there’s been about three to four times in the last 20 years, if it wasn’t for the icecream store subsidizing the farm, these cows might not be here today.”
The area around the business has seen a lot of growth.
This coupled with the restaurant getting national attention on Fieri’s show, could potentially lead to a lot more business.
“We are grateful for the people who come through our doors and help support us and take care of us. We feel their love and support. So this will give more people that experience. But it is difficult and we not only have to change the way we’re doing things but it is causing a little bit of transition and anxiety with us to understand how we can better serve the public more efficiently,” Debra Chaney said.
But for now, it seems like customers are excited about the business’ recent fame.
“I’ve already noticed in our social media posts it’s been very popular and it’s gotten a lot of good feedback so it’s going to be neat,” Carl Chaney said.
The episode will air June second on the Food Network.