Dairy cows first came to Washington in 1918. Today all seven of the major dairy cow breeds: Holsteins, Jerseys, Guernseys, Ayrshires, Brown Swiss, Milking Shorthorns, and Dutch Belted can be found in Washington. Holsteins are the most common breed, as is the case throughout the U.S.
Washington Ranks second in milk production per cow in the United States. In 2009 36 certified organic dairies were operating in Washington with 2 others applying.
The average American cow can make 5,792 quarts of milk a year. North Americans consume almost one-third of their milk in the form of cheese.