Farm Credit 100 Fresh Perspectives
Farm Credit 100 Fresh Perspectives

Henry R. Byma
Owner and Partner, By-Acre Holsteins

Wantage, New Jersey
Farm Credit Affiliation
Farm Credit East
Henry's Perspective

Henry R. Byma, 37, was named the New Jersey Outstanding Young Farmer for 2015 and is one of the Outstanding Farmers of America top 10 National Outstanding Young Farmers. As a partner in By-Acre Holsteins, he is committed to keeping his dairy successful and efficient as well as focused on cow health and environmental stewardship.

“I began at By-Acre as a child helping out at our family farm, moving on to a paid employee, to my current status as owner/partner,” Henry says. “I’ve been working towards complete farm ownership, and along the way, I am making improvements to the facility, machinery, croplands and cattle genetics to ensure that when the time comes for ownership, By-Acre Holsteins is a sound investment."

Henry has implemented a Conservation Nutrient Management plan allowing for efficient crop fertilization while reducing negative environmental effects. He holds a New Jersey D.E.P. Pesticide Applicator certification, which allows him direct application control for optimal crop outcome with minimal soil impact. He has committed to the National Resource Conservation Service to reduce the farm’s impact on the Wallkill River National Wildlife Refuge by constructing a drainage system in accordance to NRCS’s plan.

"I am the third generation of my family to farm in America. I am inspired to continue dairying because of my three young sons, who will be the fourth generation to maybe someday take over this operation,” Henry says. “I want to make sure that I am teaching the next generation to lead with professionalism and integrity, to be honest businessmen and good stewards of the land and animals.”

The fluctuating price of milk compelled Henry to seek other ways to market his milk. In 2012, By-Acre began marketing its milk to mozzarella maker Lioni Latticini, in part because of its commitment to producing quality products from quality ingredients.

“Technology is permitting us to grow crops more efficiently, increasing yields with less impact on the environment. It is allowing us to breed our cattle with better genetics, increasing milk production and herd health,” Henry says. “However, those in agriculture will have to learn that public perception will dictate the profitability of their product.”

Henry is extremely active in both community and industry organizations: Farm Service Agency Board; Wantage Fire Department; Sussex Christian Reformed Church and Christian School Association; National, New Jersey and Sussex County Holstein Associations; Sussex County Agricultural Society; and the New Jersey State Fair and Sussex County Farm & Horse Show. He also supports the local 4-H and promotes future farming through clinics he hosts and by donating calves to 4-H members who have shown exemplary showmanship.

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