Contrary to what most milk-lovers may think, the science behind feeding dairy cows is quite complicated. And Nick Richardson spends every day trying to perfect it for his customers.
“Getting consistently high production from cows requires a lot of customization on a much more regular basis than people realize,” says Richardson, whose immediate territory includes Maine, New Hampshire and half of Massachusetts. “Kent and Blue Seal continually innovates when it comes to the science side of the business. We are always striving to keep up with the most modern ration programs possible, and that serves our customers well.”
Richardson, who is from England, went to school for animal science with the intent of managing large farms there. Consulting work brought him to work for a company in the United States, and eventually ended up in Maine where he lives now. Before joining Blue Seal more than 14 years ago, Richardson worked for a competing grain company, and was well aware of Blue Seal’s reputation.
“They’ve always been known for quality,” he says. “We’d try to compete on that, but it certainly wasn’t easy. Quality, without a doubt, is the cornerstone of the company.”
Today Richardson oversees a team of Blue Seal sales managers in five states. He and his longtime yellow Labrador companion, Sebastian, spend their days visiting dairy farms throughout his region. He collects forage samples to be analyzed, then works up custom diets for every farm – diets that are ever-changing given the farm’s environment, feeding protocol and production levels.
“There are different requirements for each one,” Richardson says. “Some cows will be making 100 pounds a day versus another herd making 60 pounds of milk a day. With herds gradually getting bigger in the Northeast, it’s critical that we address individual needs and develop the most effective rations out there.”
That science-focused service is what Richardson is most proud of – and what he believes makes Blue Seal customers such loyal customers.
“We stay relevant, and we innovate,” he says, “and we deliver on quality every time.”
Nick lives with his wife, Sandra, on roughly three acres outside of Portland, Maine. They have two grown daughters who also live in the Northeast, and enjoy gardening (flowers for her and and vegetables for him). They also share a special fondness for Labradors.