Marissa Hake is an “accidental influencer” who started sharing online to help others better understand how their food is raised. Growing up on a retired dairy operation in Michigan, she developed her love for nature and animals at an early age. She got her first pony at age six, and she has always known she wanted to be a veterinarian. She started out interested in becoming an equine veterinarian, but fell in love with cows and grumpy farmers, which sent her down the path of food animal medicine.
Marissa’s day job includes being a cow veterinarian, a wife to a 7th generation farmer, and a mother to two young boys in Edon, Ohio. Because she’s not busy enough with those tasks, she also serves as the Director of Animal Welfare and Sustainable Farming for Fairlife, LLC. Her family is passionate about how they care for their land and their animals. They are always thinking about the legacy they leave behind for the next generation.
Marissa is a Michigan State University Spartan, where she obtained her Bachelor's degree in Animal Science/Pre-Vet, her Master's degree in Public Health, and Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine.
Marissa Hake has spent her whole life caring for her family’s farm and for the animals in her veterinary care. We sat down with Marissa to learn more about how Pioneer helps her live and grow her values.
My grandpa has a dairy farm operation in Michigan, where he raised and milked Holstein cows. Getting my first pony was a turning point for me in recognizing my interest in veterinary medicine, and that interest only grew after my undergraduate program in animal science. From there, I pursued education in both Public Health and Veterinary Medicine, which now helps me to show my followers the connection between animal health and human health.
I never set out to be an influencer. I love sharing information and educating people about what happens on farms. To me, authenticity is the driving force for my content. Authenticity is really the only way you can build trust with your audience, and it’s been a journey for me to determine what really resonates with my community of followers.
I learned how important it is to share who I am. Once I started sharing more about myself, the messages I wanted to convey really began to resonate, and my social media presence began to grow. Prescription messages really don’t work if you want people to really engage with you and hear your message.
My followers have started drinking milk again! They’re understanding the nutritional value of milk, and they’re also understanding the direct connection between the time and effort we put into getting the nutrition right for our cows so we get the nutrition right for our consumers. I don’t think people realize that it all starts with the feed, and the connection between the field and the milk they consume is critical.
Generationally, forever. It’s our go-to.
We would like to build out our British White beef herd and potentially develop an on-farm learning opportunity for ag and vet students.