2012 Leopold Conservation Award Winner
Dino Giacomazzi is a fourth-generation dairy farmer who owns and operates the 900 cow Giacomazzi Dairy in Hanford established by his great-grandfather.
Dino hopes to lead the way in terms of sustainability for California dairies. In 2005 he adopted strip tilling, which involves tilling the ground in narrow strips rather than disturbing the entire field. This practice improves water conservation and reduces fuel consumption, diesel emissions and dust.
Giacomazzi has also assumed a leadership role in agricultural communications and outreach, training fellow farmers to use social media to advocate for sustainable agriculture and to communicate with consumers about the vital work farmers and ranchers do.
In addition, he has volunteered to work with several state agencies on a long-term groundwater monitoring system to determine the relationship between dairy operations, waste and nutrient management practices, and groundwater quality.
“A lot of farmers think we’re crazy for doing it…because of some perceived risk, but we do it for that exact reason – because somebody has to do it. Somebody has to tell our story,” Giacomazzi said. “My desire to keep this (family business) going and to make it sustainable is greater than my fear of the consequences of being out in front.”
Courtesy of the California Farm Bureau Federation.