The Flood family has been farming the fields of Clinton, Maine for more than 200 years. Their land, which runs for miles alongside the Kennebec River, is currently home to three generations, six families and 22 members of Flood kin.
The dairy first began shipping milk as a commercial operation in 1927 under the direction of George Flood, Sr., who was only 14 at the time. Over the next 85 years, the farm grew and changed with the times and is now currently overseen by his sons Bill Flood and George Flood, Jr., along with George's wife Prudy, and their sons Dana and Tim. Other members of the Flood family help out at all different levels of the operation, and the family maintains a number of long-term full and part-time employees.
When Bill and George, Jr. purchased the farm from their parents in 1980, they both had young families and were keen on continuing the tradition of quality milk production and growth. At the time of the transfer, the dairy was milking approximately 300 cows. By the end the decade, a half dozen barns were built and the herd size had doubled. In the ensuing years, another 10 buildings and barns have been constructed, and the milking herd has increased more than five fold.
"Flood Brothers Farm has been a proud Agri-Mark Cooperative member since the mid 1990s, and our fresh, high grade milk consistently earns Quality Awards," says Jenni Tilton-Flood. "Over the past 30 years, George and Bill have made a concerted effort to expand the farm in a manner to support and provide for their families as well as their employees, maintain the integrity of their father's original drive and vision, milk and care for the finest animals and provide the highest quality of milk. They endeavor to accomplish all of this while being the best stewards of the land they can, and transition the farm to the younger generation in order to continue this two centuries old tradition."
The Floods take pride in being a part of Maine's dairy and agricultural industry; through the hard work, dedication and perseverance of the Floods and the community's other local farming families, Clinton has earned the title of "Maine's Dairy Capital." They take pride in the care they provide their animals, their stewardship of the land and the milk and dairy products they put on their neighbors table. But most of all, they take pride in the heritage and the intimacy of their large family.
"For us, family not only includes our relations, but our employees, many of which have been with us for decades," says Jenni. "We're a team, with more than 200 years of legacy and heritage to maintain. That means something to us, and we want to see it run well into the future. Our business is agricultural, but we're not just raising crops. We're raising the next generation. We teach them just how important it is to take care of their family, their neighbors and their land. I feel extremely lucky to have such a large family. For us, family is the real wealth."