Facilities and Equipment


Facilities


The lab is a 6000 square foot facility located on two acres of I-94 frontage property in the City of Sauk Centre. The lab, located on the I-94 corridor offers convenient access to the facility. Current facilities house a milk lab, forage lab, wet chemistry lab, microbiology lab and water lab. Transportation of samples to our facility is contracted through Spee-Dee Delivery Service, US Postal Service and our own sample vans. We are owned by the Stearns County Dairy Herd Improvement Association (DHIA). The lab provides milk testing for the DHIA program to herds in North and Central Minnesota, North Dakota and Sibley County, South Dakota. Feed and forage analysis are provided for clients in Minnesota, eight other states and two Canadian Provinces.

Stearns DHIA Laboratories located in Sauk Centre started testing milk samples in 1968. We analyze an average of over 100,000 milk samples per month for protein, fat and somatic cell count. The NIR (Near Infrared) feed and forage lab was added in 1988. The NIR Spectrophotometer analyzes an average of over 20,000 samples per year. With non NIR samples on the increase and a better quality control program needed, the Wet Chemistry Lab was implemented in 1992. Sample numbers have been on the rise ever since.

Another product analyzed in the lab is animal waste. It is probably one of the most popular tests run in this lab. These samples are analyzed for N, P, K and Organic N. In 2000, the first water samples were analyzed for various analytes under the Clean Water Program and Safe Drinking Water Program.


Equipment

We use state-of-the-art equipment to provide proper analysis.

The milk lab currently has two lines of 4,000/5,000 Combi-Foss Milk Analyzers to analyze samples for fat, protein and somatic cell. The Skalar Analyzer (pictured) provides the primary method for the determination of Milk Urea Nitrogen (MUN).

The NIR Spectrophotometer is the main piece of equipment in the forage lab. It was purchased in 1991 and has continued to be upgraded periodically since then. Four microwave ovens serve as drying ovens for this department. Two UDY Grinders are used to prep samples for the NIR Spectrophotometer.

Major equipment used in the chemistry lab includes: a Lachet Flow Injection analyzer for TKN and protein analysis, an ICP-AES for mineral analysis, Tecator Fibertecs for fiber analysis and Soxtec Fat Extractors for fat analysis. We also implement various digesting blocks, ovens and electrodes for numerous analytes.

The water lab equipment includes a Lachat QuickChem 8500, Varian Zeeman Graphite Furnace, incubators, ovens, HACH DR2500 Spectrophotometer, two digestion blocks, and multiple electrodes to meet the needs of their customers.  The Lachat QuickChem 8500 is used in the analysis of TKN, Chlorides, and Nitrates.  Lead and Arsenic are analyzed by the Graphite furnace.  Incubators are used for coliforms, analyses and (C)BODs.  The digestions blocks aid in the analysis of TKN, TP and CODs.  The HACH DR2500 Spectrophotometer is used for the determination of: TP, OP, Fluoride, Tannins, and Sulfates.  (C)BODs, pH, Conductivity, and Ammonias are analyzed with their respective electrodes and meters. 


Special Services

  • 24 Hour turn around on NIR samples

  • 36 Hour turn around on most wet chemistry samples

  • Rush service is available on select water analysis

  • E-Mailing or faxing of analysis

  • Affordable pricing

  • Toll free service for voice communications

  • VISA, MasterCard and Discover are accepted
















Stearns DHIA Laboratories
825 12th Street South, PO Box 227
Sauk Centre, MN 56378-0227
320.352.2028 · 800.369.2697
Fax 320.352.6163 · Email

 

Hours
Monday-Friday: 8AM-4PM
Front Entrance Drop-Off Open 24 Hours
Refrigerator Available for Water, Milk,
and Wet Feed Samples