MERCER COUNTY, OHIO — A milk supplier to Danone North America is expanding with a new dairy farm near the company's largest yogurt plant.

MVP Dairy, a partnership between McCarty Family Farms and VanTilburg Farms and the producer of Non-GMO Project verified milk for Activia, Danimals, Dannon, Light & Fit and Oikos yogurt brands, has announced the opening of a dairy in northern Mercer county, 18 miles from Danone’s facility in Minster. The opening of the dairy creates 35 jobs.

The farm is home to nearly 4,500 cows and features six free-stall barns, a carousel milking parlor and a patented anaerobic treatment cell system that reduces waste solids, consumption of water and waste odor.

“We are constantly striving to provide our cows with first-class care,” said Ken McCarty, co-owner of MVP Dairy. “We know our cows’ well-being and sustainable farming practices bring value to the foods produced by Danone that are made with our milk so it’s important that we continue to push ourselves to do even better.”

Danone North America operates a “cost-plus” model, which protects farmers from the volatile market swings for commodity and dairy prices. By establishing long-term contracts with farmers, Danone North America helps cover the cost of production plus a profit margin for the farmer, allowing more seamless generational transfers and more focus on sustainability in areas such as soil health and regenerative agriculture, according to the company.

“We are very pleased that our partnership with the McCarty family, which began almost 10 years ago, now includes this state-of-the-art new dairy farm,” said Mariano Lozano, chief executive officer of Danone North America. “The McCarty VanTilburg dairy is leading the way in highly efficient, sustainable agriculture and best-in-class cow care. The innovative practices employed at this dairy will undoubtedly inspire others to follow.”