Tom Mursu was born and raised at Mursu Dairy in central Minnesota, a small family farm his parents purchased in 1957. Decades later, Tom and his wife, Tammy, purchased the livestock, then the machinery, and finally the real estate from his mom and dad. The acquisition included an old cow barn that dated back to World War I.

By 2013, the bovines had outgrown the barn. “We were milking more cows than what that barn would hold,” Mursu said. “It was very labor intense, and we spent a lot of time doing chores.”

The Mursu family faced a conundrum. Should they downsize? Quit the dairy business? Build a new, larger barn and try some kind of newfangled technology?

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