The prestigious 2018 California Cultivator Award will be presented to Ben Curti, a third-generation dairy farmer from the Tulare area, during Ag Council’s 99th Annual Meeting next week in Napa, Calif.
Curti is a third generation dairyman, hailing from the Waukena area, which is southwest of Tulare. His family started their dairy operation in 1913 after immigrating from Italy. Today, Ben owns and operates Curtimade Dairy, Inc. and Ben Curti Farms consisting of a milking herd of 3,700 Jersey cows. He also farms 1,200 acres producing forage crops, as well as cotton.
The Curti family has been a member of Land O’Lakes and its predecessor Dairyman’s Creamery Cooperative Association since 1945. Ben himself served in both co-ops’ elected leadership, including 15 years as a Corporate Board of Director for Land O’Lakes, Inc. His leadership helped the cooperative into the Fortune 200 company it is today.
Ben is a veteran of the United States Army. In addition, he has been an active member and officer in the Sons of Italy Roma Lodge in Tulare. Ben received the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Region 9 Environmental Champion Award in 2013, and he was recognized as the Tulare County Farmer of the Year in 2005.
Ben will be formally recognized by Ag Council during its Annual California Cultivator Luncheon on Thursday, March 8.