Today, it is my honor to feature Britte Nooijens from Dongen in the Netherlands! Britte has a very unique perspective, she works as an embryo technician and enjoys going to Holstein shows. I really appreciate Britte taking time to answer our questions especially since English is not her native language.
Britte’s Story in her own words:
My name is Britte Nooijens; I am 25 years old and living in Dongen (Netherlands). I live with my Sister Stacey, my mam Rhesy and dad Jan on a small farm where my parents used to milk cows. Unfortunately my dad sold the cows when I was 3 years old. My parents are currently running a horse livery (boarding stable). My hobby was horse-riding as I did competitions every weekend but quit because I could not find time for it because I got busier going to cow shows. I was always interested in horses and cows and decided to go to agricultural college to study Animal Husbandry. My dad did not like the idea and made me realize it was a tough business with 24/7 work but that didn’t scare me. I enjoyed college as it gave me the opportunity to do internships. Through these internships I got the opportunity to go to Ontario, Canada and to China which was a great experience. One of the farms did a lot of embryo transplants and this fascinated me. I always kept that experience in the back of my mind. When I went to university I got my license to teach at an agricultural school but I could get the idea of embryo work out of my mind. I was able to do an internship at a company that did embryo transplantation and I am currently working there fulltime.
Who is your favorite cow?
Toc Farm Alllen Amyly and Rapid Bay Gorgeous, these two cows are not online good in the show ring but they also have the DNA to breed great daughters and sons. And the first cow I owned Betsie! I bought her as a calf and she is now at my friend’s farm where she is doing a great job!
Describe a typical/average day for you.
No two days are the same, there are days we flush where I give assistance in the barn, and then I go in and filter and search for the embryos. We also do IVF where I also assist. I am responsible for implanting the embryo’s into recipients which is the most exciting part of the job. Every embryo has a story! We also do pregnancy checks and it is nice to see your results and a happy farmer when the results are right.
What is the most rewarding part of being in the dairy industry? Challenging?
Most rewarding, I am surrounded by cows every day and that every farmer has their own philosophy. No matter what cow we have to flush, there is always a great reason why she gets flushed. Most challenging part is that I am a girl and have to prove myself. I think you have to work hard and earn trust. At the time you have that trust it is a great atmosphere to work.
What do you envision the future of the dairy industry looking like?
I can see the dairy industry growing and becoming more efficient in developing countries, and I think we might see the industry go through good and not so good times as it has done in the past ,
Britte, thank you for providing us with your international story, we really appreciate it!
Entire Women in Dairy Series:
- Joanna Lidback of The Farm at Wheeler Mountain, VT
- Katie Boyke Grinstead of Vir-Clar Farm, WI
- Alicia Lamb of Oakfield Corners Dairy, NY
- Ysabel Jacobs of Ferme Jacobs, Canada
- Heidi Kovacs of Sugar Maple Jerseys, NJ
- Jolene Griffin, MI
- Melissa Woolpert of Country by Chance, VT
- Katie Sattazahn, PA
- Kim Bremmer of Ag Inspirations, WI
- Abigail Copenhaver of Farmstead Nutrition, NY
- Jodi Cast of JJC Jerseys, NE
- Amy Rowbottom of Crooked Farm Creamery, ME
- Britte Nooijens, Netherlands
- Julianne Holler, PA
- Cynthia Martel, VA
- Abby Swan of Kemridge Farm, WI
- Jamie Van De Walle, WI
- Joseta Halbur, WI
- Holly Smith, WI
- Jenny L. Baerwolf of Sassy Cow Creamery, WI
- Jenna Jongenotter, Canada
- Liz Neadow of Teacup Farm, NY
- Hannah Worden of Will-O-Crest Farm, NY
- Carla Wardin of Truth or Dairy, MI
- Amanda Freund of CowPots, CT
- Mandi Pacitti of Misty Brae Holsteins, Australia
- Jessica Chittenden Ziehm of Tiashoke Farm, NY
- Lisa Myers, MD
- Carissa Ann Tolzman, WI
- Danae Bauer of FarmGirl Photography, WI
- Ashley Kennedy of Messy Kennedy, MI
- Emily Lyons, Washington DC
- Joanna Rowher of Hollingstedt Schleswig Holstein, Germany
- Rita Mosset, ND
- Brianne Brown of Beslea Farms, Canada
- Pam Bolin, IA
- Janean Boss-Anderson, WI
- Jessica Peters of Spruce Row Farm, PA
- Amanda Williams, WI
- Trisha Boyce, PA
- Melissa Hanke, WI
- Tara Woyton, NY
- Melisa Konecky, NE
- Lizzie Frazier, NE
- Renee Norman-Kenny of Eat Farm Love, PA
- Amanda Killian of Dirt Road Holsteins, WI
- Kim Kester, WI
- Amy Ruegsegger, WI
- Alba Alvarez Nunez – Spain
- Emily Parker, WI
- Nicole Kearns, PA
- Cheyenne Ryzenga, MI
- Freynie Lancaster of Royalty Ridge, OR
- Maryanne Dudli, New Zealand
- Michelle, Keller, WI
- Ashley Abbott, VA
- Brenda Rudolph of Raising a Farm, MN
- Jennifer Heim, KS
- Janet Bremer of My Barn Yard View, MN
- Iris Barham Peeler, GA
- Laura Daniels of Heartwood Farms, WI