Crown Princess Mary and her children were among the thousands who turned out to see the dairy cows. Photo: Simon Skipper/Scanpix
In what has become an annual rite of passage, some 247,000 Danes visited the nation’s organic farms on Sunday to witness dairy cows’ joy as they leave their winter stalls and make their way to fresh grass.
While numerous organic farms participated in the annual Økodag (Organic Day), the biggest event was at the Zealand farm Bækkenstoftgård, where some 8,000 people turned out to watch the cows dance their way into the fields.
Among the assembled guests were Crown Princess Mary and three of her four children: Princess Isabella, Princess Josephine and Prince Vincent.
Denmark’s food and agriculture minister, Dan Jørgensen, was also on hand at Bækkenstoftgård to see the cows bound out of their stalls.
To be certified as organic, dairy cows are required to spend their summers grazing freely on grass. While all organic cows are given their freedom for the summer, the organizers behind Økodag report that just 16 percent of non-organic cows are released from their stalls.
The organic cows are to remain in grass fields until November 1st, weather permitting.
With 247,000 people participating in Sunday's Økodag, organizers said they set an all-time attendance record.
"It is fantastic that so many Danes come out year after year to share the experience of the dancing organic cows with the organic farmers. It is incredibly contagious to feel the cows' excitement to come out to the fields, and this gives Danes a chance to experience what kind of difference it makes when they buy organic milk," Per Kølster, the chairman of the national association of organic farmers, said in a statement.
Click through for more photos from Organic Day.