One of the largest agricultural farms in the Kharkiv region in the village of Shestakove, where more than three thousand cattle were kept, was destroyed by more than 80% as a result of shelling. Workers are trying to resume work and production of dairy products.

Before the Russian invasion, the cows of the Agromol dairy farm in Shestakove produced 40 tons of milk every day. From the first days of the war, Russian aerial bombs and rocket shells fell on the enterprise. About two thousand animals died. “It happened that 200 shells arrived in two hours. When the front retreated in September, we immediately began to restore everything. Now we have about 1,000 cattle, we are still renting a farm, there are another 700-800. Two thousand were definitely killed “, says chief agronomist Serhiy Yatsenko. Some of the dead cattle are still lying in the destroyed premises of the enterprise, they cannot be taken out from under the rubble. The farm was bombed by airstrikes at the end of February: “There was such apathy… Our troops are gone, the Russians haven’t entered then. The war is going on in Kharkiv, and it seems like there is no war here, but everything has already been destroyed.” The Russians, Serhiy recalls, encouraged the locals to cooperate. “They had to open everything, show it. I said that I went to get the keys, and I got into the car and drove away,” the agronomist recalls. “The cows were on their own” Some of the cows survived because they were outside instead of indoors. Fodder crops are sown around the enterprise: “They ate there, and drank water in the ponds. They were by themselves. And they are slowly coming. Some may be injured, they have fragments.” “Our milking parlor was bombed on February 28. It was during the milking of the cows that there was an air raid and the room was bombed. Miraculously, no one died in this parlor. After February 28, no one milked them, we let the calves out and they sucked a little milk from the cows. Milking by hand is unreal Most of the dairy cows died immediately. The rest were milked by the calves. Many cows that did not let the calves near them got sick and died,” says Serhiy. Also, many animals died from mines: “There was a strip of anti-tank barriers, there were mines, cows were blown up, the bones are still lying there.

Source: Ukrainian Public TV

Citizens said that when cows were driven from the gardens, they simply fell apart in front of them, because they were still remotely detonated.” Losses were previously estimated at more than a billion hryvnias, but the company continues its work: We buy milk from other companies and produce it. There is no milk from the farm in Shestakovo in stores. Currently, we are engaged in restoration of premises and animal health. Some of the cows were taken to the Poltava region at the beginning of summer. When we restore the premises, we will be able to return them.” First of all, the electricity supply must be restored on the farm. The builders are preparing the surviving boxes for cows for the winter: they are repairing the roof and gates. But there is no question of buying new animals: about 70% of the premises cannot be restored. Some of the workers travel from Kharkiv, some live in the village. At the end of February, a 21-year-old boy who worked as a welder on a farm was fatally wounded by an airstrike, says the manager of the farm, Kateryna Kazenna. “He didn’t have time to sit down, he was caught. They dragged him to the chopped-up warehouse where the barrel is. And when they sent the man to the hospital, he was still alive, but, unfortunately, he didn’t make it,” recalls Kateryna. “They are proud of the fact that they don’t have a damn thing, and they came to take from us.” The Russians stole tools, food, machinery, fuel, construction materials, toilets and furniture from the farm, says the manager. They also slaughtered cattle. They wrote about their theft on the wall, Kateryna shows: “They are proud of the fact that they don’t have a single devil, and they came to take from us. They didn’t see that such a farm could exist. That the cows could have a clean, clean floor, the lighting is special. The farm was made for people and livestock, so that everyone was calm and comfortable.” Out of 300 workers, about 30 people returned to work after the deoccupation of the village.