USDA Organic standards ensure that dairy cows have access to pasture during the grazing season, which is 120 days per year, and that at least 30 percent of dairy cows’ “dry matter intake” comes from pasture during the grazing season.
Other pasture-based systems
Many traditional, smaller-scale dairy farms still keep cows on pasture during the grazing season.
The Animal Welfare Institute’s Animal Welfare Approved Standards require continuous pasture access for dairy cows. Certified Humane dairy standards prohibit certification of dairy systems that do not allow outdoor access, and encourage the meeting of dairy cows’ nutritional requirements through grazing on pasture where possible.
Find out how you can help improve the welfare of dairy cows and their calves.