Kyle VanDyk, Delegate, District 05, Prosser, WA
It’s been quite a journey for Kyle VanDyk so far, and the exciting part is that he’s just really getting started! Kyle is bringing a wide variety of experiences to the All West Board, and has been developing this repertoire since the day he was born.
Growing up in the very northwestern part of the state, Kyle began his dairy experience at his family’s VanDyk-K Registered Holstein Farm in Lynden. Known around the world for extremely successful show cattle, including VanDyk-K Integrity Paradise, Kyle had the opportunity to meet all kinds of cattle breeders either at home or on the road. Working with this caliber of cattle meant the VanDyks made frequent trips to World Dairy Expo and the Royal Winter Fair, as well many farm visits throughout the U.S. and Canada.
That strong foundation has given him a unique perspective in today’s role as a herd manager at the 3,000-cow J&K Dairy LLC in Sunnyside, WA. “I’ve been the herd manager here for about four years, and while we don’t breed for show type, we do believe that breeding for very sound, functional type is extremely important.
Cows need to have great feet & legs and udders to stick around in a commercial setting, and we know that keeping cows longer is more efficient than turning over cows after one lactation. We also concentrate on breeding for high percent solids.”
J&K Dairy is currently using BREWMASTER, YODER, PETY, GREGARIOUS, DONATELLO, PUNCH, BOB, HEISENBURG and SAMURI on their cows. In the heifer pens, they’re using all sexed semen by BREWMASTER, BOB, PETY, YODER, CYCLONE and FLAGSHIP.
They’ve been using 4M semen for a little bit and are very happy with the conception rates they’ve been seeing, which run anywhere from 60-70%!
J&K Dairy works with several members of the All West team, including Salesman & Technician Tyson Ross, SMS Evaluator Randy VanWieringen. “We use a 50:50 ratio for proven bulls versus genomic young sires. I tend to lean toward proven bulls because I like to know what I’m getting…I don’t like surprises! If we use a young bull, the sire must be a proven sire, and the dam must have freshened at least one time.”
“I’m really looking forward to being a part of the All West Director/Delegate team. I don’t just work in the dairy industry, I still own cattle myself. It’s important to me, especially as a producer, that we do all we can to ensure the success of member/owners of All West. We’re in this industry together, so we need to pool our resources and find ways to ensure future profitability. I will always have a love of the registered industry, but I’m intrigued by the commercial dairy efficiencies and business practices. The combination of both is pretty exciting to think about and put into practice!” Kyle and his wife, Melissa, have two children, Danika (8) and Kasen (7). They reside in Prosser, WA.