Archive for News – Page 2

Appeal for Australian farmers who died in the fires

Jersey Australia and Global Impact Supremacy have joined forces to launch a fundraiser for the Salway family and other farmers devasted by the country’s bushfires.

Robert Salway, 63, a long-term Jersey Australia member, was killed alongside his son Patrick, 29, as they were trying to protect their farm at Cobargo NSW.

Funds raised during the drive at International Dairy Week (IDW) will be donated to the Salway family and the Dairy Industry Bushfire Relief Support Fund.

Jersey Australia CEO Glen Barrett said there had been strong industry and member support through the donation of products, including animals, semen, cheese hampers and other goods.

“These fires have been devastating for all Australians and particularly hard for farming communities,” Mr Barrett said.

“Robert and Patrick Salway were much loved members of the Jersey family and this is the least we can do to support their families,” he said.

“And our concern goes beyond our membership and the Jersey breed. Our entire dairy and farming communities have been devastated by the impact of these fires.”

At the start of the Global Impact Supremacy Sale at IDW on January 21, a Casino pregnancy due in July out of Lightning Ridge Tequila Fernleaf VG87 will be auctioned, with 100 per cent of proceeds donated to the Salway family. The consignment was donated by Frank and Diane Borba, Callum Moscript and Declan Patten.

There will also be a silent auction running through IDW from January 19-23 with support from Dairy Livestock Services and Elite Livestock Auctions. Proceeds will be shared between the Salway family and the Dairy Industry Bushfire Relief Support Fund

Support has been overwhelming and there have been dozens of donations to the auction. The items will be listed at elitelivestockauctions.com.au

Anyone wishing to donate to the silent auction can contact Mr Barrett on 0418 466 371 or Declan Patten from Global Impact Supremacy on 0499 949292.

A charitable account has been set up with NAB Agribusiness and people can make a cash donation to 2020 Bush Fire Support BSB 083-894, account 49-781-1553.

Source: Dairy News Australia

All-American Kids host 2020 Wisconsin Junior Holstein Convention

The annual Wisconsin Junior Holstein Convention was hosted by the Clark County juniors in Stevens Point at the Holiday Inn Hotel and Convention Center, Jan. 3-5.

More than 400 Holstein members, chaperones and volunteers were in attendance to help make the weekend a success.

Throughout the convention junior members participated in numerous contests, including speaking, arts and crafts, photography, Dairy Jeopardy and Dairy Bowl. The largest competition of the weekend was Dairy Bowl, in which 27 junior, 18 senior and 10 rookie teams competed.

More than 50 volunteers helped coordinate Dairy Bowl matches, Dairy Jeopardy contests and the speaking contest. The Manitowoc/Calumet County team took first place in the senior Dairy Bowl contest with Brown County Team 1 coming in second place. The winner of the junior division was Wood County with Iowa County Team 1 taking second.

Team members on the senior Manitowoc/Calumet County team include Clarissa Ulness, Garrett Ulness, Lauren Siemers and Brianna Meyer. The Wood County junior team consisted of Wyatt Dorshorst, Sarah Dorshorst, Emma Bangart and Maddie Hensel.

Manitowoc/Calumet and Wood Counties will represent Wisconsin at the National Holstein Convention in Lancaster, Pa. in June 2019.

Rounding out the top five for the junior division were Brown Team 1, Shawano Team 1 and Fond du Lac Team 2, respectively. Finishing in third through fifth place in the senior division were Green County, Dodge County and Door County.

All juniors at convention had the chance to compete in the Dairy Jeopardy competition. The top competitor in each of three age brackets has the opportunity to compete at the national level. Winning the junior division was Logan Harbaugh, Shawano County; second was earned by Austin Meyer, Calumet County; and third went to Cathryn Gunst, Waupaca/Waushara County.

In the intermediate division, Coltin Coffeen of Brown County topped the group with Brianna Meyer, Calumet County, and Marissa Vosberg, Green County, placing second and third, respectively. Lauren Siemers, Manitowoc County, was the winning contestant in the senior division, Mason Jauquet of Shawano County placed second and McKenna Coffeen of Brown County took home third place.

In the speaking contest, Wisconsin can send up to three delegates in each division to compete at National Convention. To compete, youth must prepare a speech on a topic related to the dairy industry at a length assigned to their specific age division.

Heading to National Convention this year in the junior division are Austin Meyer, Calumet County; Christopher Gunst, Waupaca/Waushara County; and Madison Wiese, Brown County.

In the intermediate division, Matthew Gunst, Dodge County, took home top honors. Abby Meyer of Calumet County placed second, and Elizabeth Gunst, Dodge County, placed third.

Winning the senior division was Brianna Meyer of Calumet County with Hannah Ullom, Chippewa County, taking second, and Lauren Siemers of Manitowoc County placing third.

On Saturday evening, the annual banquet was held to honor outstanding juniors in the association. Colin Uecker of Jefferson County and Kalista Hodorff of Fond du Lac County claimed the most prestigious honor, being named Outstanding Holstein Boy and Girl.

These individuals have excelled in their Holstein projects, and have been an asset to the association and dairy industry as a whole. Also receiving honors were 14 other Distinguished Junior Members, 12 Young Distinguished Junior Member winners, and 10 Twelve & Under Recognition winners, all of which excelled in their Wisconsin Holstein activities in 2019.

In addition to Uecker and Hodorff, 2019 Distinguished Junior Members (DJM) included Jenna Broege, Rock County; Nicole Broege, Rock County; McKenna Coffeen, Brown County; Eliza Endres, Dane County; Hannah Hockerman, Marquette County; Kaianne Hodorff, Fond du Lac County; Mason Jauquet, Shawano County; Ben Kronberg, Rock County; Rachel McCullough, Green County; Hannah Nelson, Pierce County; Dawson Nickels, Dodge County; Lauren Siemers, Manitowoc County; Fritzy Ullom, Chippewa County; and Hannah Ullom, Chippewa County.

The Young Distinguished Junior Holstein Members (YDJM) included: Ashley Brandel, Jefferson County; Colton Brandel, Jefferson County; Ava Endres, Dane County; Cathryn Gunst, Waupaca/Waushara County; Christopher Gunst, Waupaca/Waushara County; Elizabeth Gunst, Dodge County; Jacob Harbaugh, Shawano County; Kaydence Hodorff, Fond du Lac County; Emily Stumpf, Fond du Lac County; Kaelyn Weigel, Grant County; Kenadee Weigel, Grant County; and Grady Wendorf, Dodge County.

Lastly, Twelve & Under Member Recognition was awarded to Justin Brandel, Jefferson County; Katie Brandel, Jefferson County; Christina Buttles, Grant County; Logan Harbaugh, Shawano County; Vivian Lichty, Dodge County; Abby Meyer, Calumet County; Ella Raatz, Clark County; Cameron Ryan, Fond du Lac County; Dylan Ryan, Fond du Lac County; and Payton Sarbacker, Dane County.

Of the exceptional youth recognized, four representatives in the DJM and the YDJM categories were selected to submit award forms to the national level with hopes of being honored at the National Convention. Mason Jauquet, Rachel McCullough, Hannah Nelson and Colin Uecker all were chosen to represent Wisconsin as DJMs. The YDJM delegates include Ashley Brandel, Colton Brandel, Ava Endres and Jacob Harbaugh.

The 2020 Wisconsin Holstein Princess and Attendant also were crowned at the banquet on Saturday evening. This year, Hannah Ullom of Chippewa County will serve as the WHA Princess, and Roslind Anderson of Pierce County will join her as the WHA Princess Attendant.

The WHY Leadership Merit award was created this year to recognize youth who excel in leadership at a local level. They are nominated by an advisor or fellow junior member by means of an application on their behalf. This year’s award recipients include: Hannah Hensel, Wood County; Katie Biese, Brown County; Josh Gerbitz, Rock County; and Ainsley Noble, Grant County.

Special recognition is given to youth leaders that have been nominated by youth in the Junior Holstein Association. This year’s WHY (Wisconsin Holstein Youth) Friends were honored in the more than five years of service category. Receiving awards were Peggy Coffeen from Brown County and Linda Behling from Dodge County.

Wisconsin Holstein awarded more than $15,500 in scholarships this year, and an auction was held to raise funds for future awards. Donated items auctioned included:

• UW Badgers Men’s Basketball tickets, donated by Rob and Karla Rippchen, and Corey Geiger and Krista Knigge.

• Farmgirl photography session, donated by Danae Bauer.

• A stay at Dr. Daluge’s Ski House in Montreal, Wis., donated by Rick and Peggy Daluge.

• UW Badgers Men’s Hockey tickets, donated by Eric Olstad and Todd Kronberg.

• Green Bay Packers tickets, donated by Kevin Jorgensen.

Funds from these items are put into the WHA scholarship fund, and $3,050 was added this year. High school seniors, short course, and two- and four-year college students that are members of WHA all are eligible for these scholarships.

Throughout the convention, youth were recognized for other outstanding achievements, including Junior Progressive Breeder and Long-Range Production. Those receiving Junior Progressive Breeder Awards include:

• Tessa and Stella Schmocker, Jefferson County.

• Nathan Cordes, Wood County.

• Katie Brandel, Jefferson County.

• Colton, Ashley, Katie and Justin Brandel, Jefferson County.

• Dylan and Cameron Ryan, Fond du Lac County.

• Gracin and Chesney Speich, Rock County.

• Jared and Macie Abraham, Sheboygan County.

• Brooke, Luke and Dane Trustem, Rock County.

• Brooke Trustem, Rock County.

• Luke Trustem, Rock County.

• Matthew, Elizabeth, Cathryn and Christopher Gunst, Dodge and Waupaca/Waushara Counties.

• Cathryn and Christopher Gunst, Waupaca/Waushara County.

• Christopher Gunst, Waupaca/Waushara County.

• Christina Buttles, Grant County.

• Emily Stumpf, Fond du Lac County.

• Jacob, Logan and Madison Harbaugh, and Adella Loehr, Shawano County.

• McKenna and Coltin Coffeen, and Breya Pollack, Brown County.

• Collin Wille, Barron County.

Long Range Production recognizes owners of cows that have produced more than 100,000 pounds in their lifetime. In the over 100,000 pounds category:

• Brooke, Luke and Dane Trustem, Rock County.

• Jared and Macie Abraham, Sheboygan County.

• Hannah Hensel, Wood County.

• Jacob, Logan and Madison Harbaugh, Shawano County.

• Brooke Trustem, Rock County.

• Christina Buttles, Grant County.

• Dylan and Cameron Ryan, Fond du Lac County.

• Colton, Ashley, Katie and Justin Brandel, Jefferson County.

In the over 150,000-pound category are:

• Christina Buttles, Grant County.

• Colton, Ashley, Katie and Justin Brandel, Jefferson County.

• Collin Wille, Barron County.

• Kalista, Kaianne and Kaydence Hodorff, Fond du Lac.

• McKenna and Coltin Coffeen, and Breya Pollack, Brown County.

Lastly, in the over 200,000-pound category are:

• Kalista, Kaianne and Kaydence Hodorff, Fond du Lac County.

• Emily Stumpf, Fond du Lac County.

• Dane Trustem, Rock County.

The convention concluded Sunday morning with an awards breakfast and the annual business meeting, where four new Junior Activities Committee (JAC) members were elected. The JAC group is responsible for coordinating and overseeing all junior events within the Wisconsin Holstein Association.

Selected this year for the southwest district was Hannah Hockerman of District 5, Emma Dorshorst of Wood County for the northwest district, Nicole Broege of Rock County for the southeast, and Elise Bleck of Sheboygan County for the northeast district. These members will serve a two-year term on the JAC, and join second-year members Matthew Gunst, Dodge County; McKenna Coffeen, Brown County; Hannah Nelson, Pierce County; and Nathan Daniels, Iowa County.

The contest room is an excellent way to show off projects completed by junior members throughout the year. Members participate in photography, drawing and painting, crafts, and folding display contests. Results are as follows:

Photography Contest

Junior Animal

First and People’s Choice: Ella Raatz, Clark County.

Second: Natalie Ott, Green County.

Third: Cathryn Gunst, Waupaca/Waushara County.

Junior People

First and People’s Choice: Ella Raatz, Clark County.

Second: Jacob Raatz, Clark County.

Third: Kenadee Weigel, Grant County.

Junior Farm Scene

First: Jacob Raatz, Clark County.

Second: Christina Buttles, Grant County.

Third: Ella Raatz, Clark County.

People’s Choice: Kenadee Weigel, Grant County.

Senior Animal

First: Kaelyn Weigel, Grant County.

Second: Kaelyn Weigel, Grant County.

Third: Elena Jarvey, Shawano County.

People’s Choice: Tie — Elena Jarvey, Shawano County and Emily Stumpf, Fond du Lac County.

Senior People

First and People’s Choice: Hannah Hensel, Wood County.

Second: Laurianna Dannenberg, Iowa County.

Third: Hannah Hensel, Wood County.

Senior Farm Scene

First: Hannah Hensel, Wood County.

Second and People’s Choice: Kaelyn Weigel, Grant County.

Third: Kaelyn Weigel, Grant County.

Advertising Contest

Amateur

First and People’s Choice: Hannah Hensel, Wood County.

Second: Payton Sarbacker, Dane County.

Third: Payton Sarbacker, Dane County.

Professionally Assisted

First and People’s Choice: Kaelyn, Kenadee and Keegan Weigel, Grant County.

Second: Elise Bleck, Sheboygan County.

Third: Jenna Broege, Rock County.

Folding Display Contest

Junior

First and People’s Choice: Cathryn Gunst, Waupaca/Waushara County.

Second: Christopher Gunst, Waupaca/Waushara County.

Third: Ella Raatz, Clark County.

Intermediate

First and People’s Choice: Lily Jenson, Iowa County.

Crafts Contest

Junior

First: Payton Sarbacker, Dane County.

Second and People’s Choice: Grace Hensel, Wood County.

Third: Grace Hensel, Wood County.

Drawing & Painting Contest

Junior

First: Maddy Hensel, Wood County.

Second and People’s Choice: Callie Behling, Marathon County.

Third: Payton Sarbacker, Dane County.

Senior

First: Brianna Meyer, Calumet County.

Second and People’s Choice: Elena Jarvey, Shawano County.

Third: Brianna Meyer, Calumet County.

The annual essay contest encourages members to write about assigned topics relating to today’s dairy industry. In this year’s junior division, taking top honors was Aubrey Behling, Marathon County; second was awarded to Kenadee Weigel, Grant County; and third to Keegan Weigel, Grant County. Kaelyn Weigel, Grant County, took first in the senior division with Tyler Schroepfer of Langlade County placing second.

One of the most coveted awards, based on participation throughout the year and enthusiasm, is the Spirit Award, which was given to Grant County. Winner of the Bell-R-Ring contest was Fond du Lac County.

Amy Gerhardt, Neillsville, was this year’s winner of the calf raffle.

Weigland Holsteins and KHW Genetics donated the Registered Holstein heifer for this year’s raffle.

The following businesses donated additional prizes: Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin, Country Today, CentralStar Cooperative, NASCO, Cattle Connection, Badger Dairy Club, UW-Platteville Pioneer Dairy Club, World Dairy Expo, Hoard’s Dairyman, STgenetics, UW-River Falls Dairy Club, Alta Genetics, and Bonnie Mohr.

The Wisconsin Holstein Association commends the Clark County Junior Holstein Association members and chaperones, and extends a special thank you to all volunteers that helped make the weekend a success. The 2021 Wisconsin Junior Holstein Convention will be hosted by Waupauca/Waushara County.

For more information visit the WHA website at www.wisholsteins.com or call the office at 1-800-223-4269.

Wisconsin Holstein is a not-for-profit membership organization with the purpose of promoting the Wisconsin Registered Holstein Breed, and its breeders and owners.

For more information visit the WHA website at www.wisholsteins.com or call (800) 223-4269.

‘Cow parking’ for Australia bushfire-affected farms

Dairy farms impacted by bushfires may need to temporarily relocate milking cows to an alternative farm where they can continue to be milked. This can be a short term emergency arrangement or a longer term business agreement.

Bega Cheese and Saputo Dairy Australia have agreed to facilitate cow parking arrangements between farms in fire-affected areas. Farmers with milking cows requiring relocation or farms able to offer cow parking for milking cows should contact these processing companies directly.

Cow parking carries a high risk of introducing mastitis bacteria and/or other animal diseases and should be avoided wherever possible. However during crisis situations it may be the only viable option to get cows milked.

Read this fact sheet with information on milk quality and animal health considerations associated with cow parking (including vaccinations and traceability requirements).

If you require assistance with cow parking or can offer this service, please contact:

Bega Cheese T: 02 6491 7787

Saputo Dairy Australia T: 03 9040 5000

Requests and offers for agistment of non-milking animals in Victoria should be directed to Victorian Farmers Federation T: 1300 882 833

For information on more support services for farmers affected by bushfires, please click here.

Source: Dairy Australia

Applications open for Australia’s European Young Breeders School 2020 Team

Applications are now open for places on the five-strong Australian team that will compete at the European Young Breeders School in Battice, Belgium, in September 2020 with young dairy men and women representing all breeds encouraged to apply.

An Australian team competed at the European Breeders School for the first time in 2019, with all team members finishing in the top third of the results, three in the top fifteen. For 2020 the team will be led by Justin Johnston and 2019 team member, Julia Paulger.

“Planning for 2020 started as soon as we returned home,” says Mr Johnston. “For anyone looking to pursue a career in the dairy industry this is an incredible opportunity. The European Young Breeders School is the international reference point for training and show preparation, with almost 200 competitors from around the world expected to take part next year.”

Leadership development is at the heart of Australia’s EYBS program according to Julia Paulger, who will be returning to Belgium as joint team leader.

“Standing alongside four friends as the first Australian team was an unbelievable experience – one I won’t forget. The memories and friendships we made and the experience we gained will last us a lifetime. It’s a real privilege to go back in this new role. Based on my own experience I can see this initiative playing a really important part in developing and broadening the horizons for Australian dairy youth for many years to come,” says Ms Paulger.

Backed by The Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria, Holstein Australia, Jersey Australia and a growing number of dairy industry businesses, applications are open to 18 to 25 year olds planning a future career in the industry. As well as competing at the School, the Australian team will take part in an educational tour through Holland and Belgium.

Brad Jenkins, RASV Chief Executive Officer, says: “The Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria are proud to offer our support of the Australian youth delegation to the 2020 European Young Breeders School.

“Now in our second year of partnering with Holstein Australia and Jersey Australia to deliver this program, we are excited to assist emerging leaders in the dairy industry to develop valuable leadership skills and importantly, create support networks that will last a lifetime.” 

“The European Young Breeders School offers a unique educational experience and we encourage eligible participants to apply for this tremendous opportunity to assist greatly in their development as emerging leaders in the dairy industry.” 

The annual five-day event, run by the Association Wallonne de l’Elevage, involves hands-on workshops including bedding, showmanship & clipping, as well as classroom-based sessions such as marketing and herd promotion. After three days of workshops and practice, participants put their skills to the test in stock judging, showmanship & calf classes.

Graeme Gillan, Holstein Australia Chief Executive Officer says: “We are really excited to get behind this great youth initiative again in 2020. The response to Australia’s first European Young Breeders School opportunity in 2019 is I think a real testament to the calibre of our young dairy men and women and our Australian dairy youth programs.

“We are a truly global industry, and this program presents a unique opportunity to experience that first hand and start building international relationships early on in one’s career. You have to be in it to win it, so if you are setting out on a dairy career, apply today.”

Glen Barrett, Jersey Australia General Manager says: ”EYBS is an exciting opportunity for Australia’s young dairy women and men and with this year’s plans to build on the success of 2019 Jersey Australia  is delighted to continue and expand on our support in partnership with the RASV and Holstein Australia for the program. 

“The intent to provide personal development opportunities to build on the team members’ personal development outside of the show ring adds increasing value to the program and future opportunities to team members and the dairy industry.” 

In addition to RASV, Holstein Australia and Jersey Australia, team supporters so far for 2020 include the Gardiner Dairy Foundation, Genetics Australia, ST Genetics, KEENAN, Alltech Lienert Australia and WFI Insurance.

Applications are now open and close Friday 31st January 2020.

Who can enter?

Entry is open to Australian residents aged 18 to 25 years on 2nd September 2020. Applicants must have a track record that  demonstrates  a high level of skill and expertise in the preparation of cattle for showing and an intention to continue working or develop a career in the dairy industry.

Applications are invited from people representing all dairy breeds from all states and territories. To be eligible for the trip applicants must be able to travel between 28th August and 10th September 2020. Team members from 2019 are ineligible for the 2020 team.

How to enter?

Application should be made via email to enquiry@holstein.com.au by the closing date of Friday 31st January 2020. Applications must include a covering letter covering the points below and resume, to include both a personal and dairy industry referee. The covering letter must demonstrate:

  • Your intention to pursue or continue a career in the dairy industry.
  • Why you believe you should be chosen to represent Australia at the European Young Breeders School.
  • What you hope to learn from taking part in the European Young Breeders School and educational tour.

Key dates

Entries must be received by 5pm on Friday 31st January 2020. Interviews for shortlisted candidates  will take place shortly afterwards with the successful applicants announced in late February. The European Young Breeders School takes place in Battice, Belgium, from 2nd to 6th September 2020, preceded by a three-day educational tour taking in some of Holland and Belgium’s premium dairy regions. Dates of travel to and from Australia are to be confirmed.

Further information is available from Justin Johnston on 0428 871 828 or enquiry@holstein.com.au.

With three farms to run and fences to fix, there’s no time to grieve

Aaron Salway, with his nephew Harley Salway, 2. Just behind them is the ridge where Aaron’s father Robert, and brother Patrick Salway died protecting their property in Wandella. Picture: Dion Georgopoulos

Now, with Patrick’s blond-haired two-year-old son, Harley, sitting with him on his quad bike, he was back on the farm fencing, trying to keep his emotions in check and slowly, painstakingly, attempting keep the family together and preserve what little was left.

“We’re all feeling numb, to be honest,” he said.

“We’re hurting bad. And we’ve cried. But we’ve got to keep going.”

He looked down at his young nephew immediately, who sat contentedly, waving the flies from his face.

There was an unspoken, awful emotional burden to be lifted here and Aaron Salway was stepping up, ready to do the heavy lifting.

He now had not one, but three farms to run. His grief would have to wait.

Like many farmers in the once-lush Bega Valley, for decades a rich source of the dairy products put on the tables of tens of thousands of people all over NSW and the ACT, Aaron Salway is back at work.

Behind him, in the base of the valley, is a ribbon of green grass he’s now fencing to serve as future feed for his cattle.

“People here, neighbours and friends, have been wonderful. They’ve all just pitched in to help. There’s been a lot of kindness and support,” he said.

Further up the hill, the grass is razed to bare earth by the fireballs that rolled out of the mountains to the west and bounced “like fire bombs” around the hillsides.

The Salways, three boys and three girls, are fifth-generation farmers in the valley.

They are closely knitted into the fabric of this small community, and known by all. The Cobargo agricultural show, now cancelled, was happening next month and everyone was getting ready for the big day. The show chooks, the horses, the cattle; they were all being prepped for Cobargo’s biggest social event on the calendar. Now the entire town is in shock.

“Dad always said that with bush, you need to burn it before it burns you. And he was right. It got him.”

He said his grandfather used to run cattle in the bush of the mountains behind Wandella and in doing so, they would fell and clear the bush to keep the fire risk down.

But as restrictions were imposed, they stuck to their farms and would look up to the high ridgelines above them where the uncontrolled bush grew thick and deep. Every year that passed, the risk and the forest fuel increased.

And when it came, it came without warning.

 

Patrick and Robert Salway died trying to protect their home but the intensity of the fire was simply too much. No one quite knows what happened but they were overwhelmed, some 60 metres downhill from their home, perhaps in a last-ditch effort to flee.

“They were in the wrong place at the wrong time,” Mr Salway said. “I think they, like a lot of people around here, thought could fight it.

“But this was no ordinary bushfire. This was something else again, something unbelievable.”

He described the New Year’s Eve attack as like a warzone, where a series of firebombs bounced and boomed across the countryside, exploding and shattering trees and sucking the oxygen out of the air.

“There were a mob of cattle which ran up the ridge just over there,” he said, pointing across the valley.

“They just all keeled over and died, starved of oxygen.”

With 90 per cent of his fencing gone, every day of the past week has been long and busy just trying to set posts and strainers and string barbed wire to protect his stock from wandering onto the road.

“We have just got to keep strong and do our best,” he said.

Source: Bega District News

Mexican Chamber of Deputies Approves Bill that Prohibits Use of Dairy Terms on Plant-Based Alternatives

  • In late December 2019, Mexico’s Chamber of Deputies’ voted in favor of a reform to the Ley de la Propiedad Industrial (“Industrial and Federal Property of Consumer Protection law”), which would make regulations on misleading advertising more stringent.  This prohibition will have an impact on plant-based alternatives that currently use dairy terms, such as “soymilk” or “almond yogurt.”
  • The reform would amend articles 90 and 95 of the Industrial and Federal Property of Consumer Protection law, which would expand what constitutes false or misleading language, including the composition of products.  The president of the Livestock Commission, Eduardo Ron, noted that the draft bill “represents hope for thousands of small, medium, and large milk producers, who everyday face unfair practices in the market.”
  • The next step is for Mexico’s Chamber of Senators to review the amendments to the Industrial and Federal Property of Consumer Protection law.  Ron noted that the law would also apply to other products, like sugar-based syrup products that depict honeybees on their packaging, which confuses and misleads consumers.  We will continue to monitor any developments.

In late December 2019, Mexico’s Chamber of Deputies’ voted in favor of a reform to the Ley de la Propiedad Industrial (“Industrial and Federal Property of Consumer Protection law”), which would make regulations on misleading advertising more stringent. This prohibition will have an impact on plant-based alternatives that currently use dairy terms, such as “soymilk” or “almond yogurt.” The reform would amend articles 90 and 95 of the Industrial and Federal Property of Consumer Protection law, which would expand what constitutes false or misleading language, including the composition of products. The president of the Livestock Commission, Eduardo Ron, noted that the draft bill “represents hope for thousands of small, medium, and large milk producers, who everyday face unfair practices in the market.” The next step is for Mexico’s Chamber of Senators to review the amendments to the Industrial and Federal Property of Consumer Protection law. Ron noted that the law would also apply to other products, like sugar-based syrup products that depict honeybees on their packaging, which confuses and misleads consumers. We will continue to monitor any developments.

Source: natlawreview.com

Milk producer says “Dairy is Scary” billboard in Green Bay is inflammatory

A billboard recently placed along Ashland Avenue in Green Bay has people talking. Kris Schuller reports that’s especially true for dairy producers who the billboard appears to be targeting.

Near the corner of Ashland and Lombardi a billboard sits with a message directed at the dairy industry. Just three short words – “Dairy is Scary.”

The billboard was ordered by an individual named Rosco Perez – who we’ve been trying to contact with no luck. But the message isn’t appreciated by a dairy producer on this farm.

“I think it’s poor judgement to go out and spread inflammatory words like that,” said Dan Diederich who owns Diederich Farms.

Diederich has been a dairy producer since 2005, managing a herd of 540 dairy cattle in De Pere. He says his dairy isn’t scary and he is committed to caring for his animals.

“I don’t wake up at two in the morning to take care of a difficult calving because I don’t like animals – I care,” Diederich said.

Similar billboards have appeared in places like California, signs urging people to give up dairy products. But according to this dairyman – for all the wrong reasons.

“They are alluding to either one of two things. One that dairy isn’t good for you, which isn’t true. Talk to any registered dietician that has gone to school and learned that dairy is very good for you. Or they think our methods are wrong and cruel, which is also incorrect,” he said.

Diederich says it’s an attack on his career that is allowed under the First Amendment. But he wishes those who had a problem with dairy would express their concerns in face-to-face discussion.

“It’s very unfortunate that somebody would target one of the main economic drivers in our area and something that is quite frankly, a very nutritious and delicious food,” he said.

Source: wearegreenbay.com

Dairy co-op finds temporary solution after losing Kraft contract

Milk makes its way through a collection system. The milk flows down from the automatic cow milking machine. Sydney Schaefer/Watertown Daily Times

The local dairy cooperative that lost its contract to sell milk to Kraft last month found a temporary solution that should bring in revenue, albeit less than usual.

But the group of almost 30 local farmers united through Jefferson County Bulk Milk Cooperative has still been searching for a longer-term buyer for its milk that would also pay a normal price.

Upstate Niagara Cooperative had previously agreed to purchase about 30 percent of what the local co-op’s member farmers typically produce, which the company has used to make yogurt at its North Lawrence plant. The group, however, still needed to find a home for the rest of the milk.

In the evening of Dec. 31, the last day of the co-op’s existing contract with Kraft, member farmer Lynn A. Murray, co-owner of Murcrest Farm, Copenhagen, said he received a call from the group’s broker telling him they found a short-term home for the group’s milk. Maryland & Virginia Milk Producers Cooperative, Reston, Va., purchased the local co-ops milk for two days, Mr. Murray said. The local co-op received below market value for its milk because it was collected as surplus for production. Even with a lower price and higher transportation costs, Mr. Murray said the deal served better than earning nothing and having to dump the milk.

“It was the closest market we could find in those two days,” he said.

After New Year’s Day, the local co-op took to the spot market, in which processors seek to buy extra milk for short periods, and secured deals to sell and transport milk to three New York plants through Sunday.

Kraft, the same company that rejected the local co-op’s bid for a year-long contract, purchased milk to have sent to its Lowville and Walton plants, and Cayuga Milk Ingredients purchased milk for its Auburn plant, Mr. Murray said. Both larger cooperatives, like the one in Virginia, bought the local group’s milk for less than normal price, as they also considered it surplus supply.

“Between those three spots (and the North Lawrence plant), we were able to market all of our milk,” Mr. Murray said, “and we haven’t dumped any milk so far.”

The co-op will most likely have to return to the spot market on Thursday to strike more short-term deals, unless its broker can find a buyer willing to pay a normal price for a longer period of time.

While the temporary deals with Kraft and Cayuga Milk provide revenue, as opposed to earning none from having to dump milk, Mr. Murray said bringing back less money for his farmers because they have to accept a lower than average price, at a time when milk prices fall short of the cost of production, has been “emotionally hard to do.” He said he hopes the group’s broker can find buyers willing to pay the normal price other farmer groups receive for a month or a couple months until they can strike a deal similar to the contract with Kraft.

This co-op has worked hard to find a market and worked hard to make sure its farmer members stay in business,” said Jay M. Matteson, agricultural coordinator for Jefferson County Economic Development. “We’ve stayed in touch. We’re willing to do whatever we can to try to assist them.”

Kraft, which had been the sole buyer for the local co-op’s milk last year, notified the group of its decision to no longer purchase its milk on Dec. 2, which left little time for Mr. Murray and his fellow farmers to find a new buyer. Unlike its Jefferson County counterpart, Lowville Producers Dairy Cooperative received a year-long contract to sell its milk to Kraft.

“All of our farmers are important to our industry. All of our dairy farmers are important to the local economy,” Mr. Matteson said. “Every farm contributes to the tax base and brings outside revenue to the community.”

Source: nny360.com

Caleb B. McGee Obituary

Everyone at The Bullvine would like to send our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Caleb McGee.

Caleb B. McGee, 19, of Clearfield, died on Wednesday, January 8, 2020 as a result of a motor vehicle accident.

He was born on April 21, 2000 in State College, a son of Brian N. and Becky A. (Mohr) McGee of Clearfield.

Caleb was a member of the Community Baptist Church, Curwensville. He was currently a sophomore at Penn State University where he was studying Animal Science. At Penn State, he was a member of the Penn State Dairy Science Club. As Caleb had a love of cows, he was also a member of the Morrisons Cove Dairy 4-H Club and has shown dairy cows most all of his life.

Caleb was also a gifted musician and had an extreme love of music. He was involved with the Clearfield High School music department as a member of the band and choir. He was recognized in several district, regional and state music festivals, even having the distinguished honor of singing as a Tenor 2 with the All National Choir.

In addition to his parents, Caleb is survived by a brother, Jonathan McGee of Clearfield; a maternal grandfather, Andy Mohr of New Enterprise; uncles Loren McGee, companion Lisa Pruznak and cousins Eric and Amber of Altoona, and uncle Scott Mohr, aunt Susie and cousin Sam of New Enterprise.

Caleb was preceded in death by a maternal grandmother, Sara Mohr; and paternal grandparents, Wallace and Pat McGee.

Funeral services will be held at the Community Baptist Church, Curwensville on Sunday at 2 PM with Pastor Todd Hogue officiating. Interment will be in Crown Crest Memorial Park, Hyde.

Friends will be received at Community Baptist Church, Curwensville on Sunday from 1-2 PM.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorial contributions be made to Community Baptist Church, PO Box 202, Curwensville, PA, 16833; or the PA Holstein Association (Juniors) 839 Benner Pike, State College, PA 16801; or the Morrisons Cove 4-H Dairy Club, C/O Robyn Bechtel, 147 Bechtel Lane, Martinsburg, PA 16662.

Beardsley Funeral Home and Crematory, Clearfield is in charge of arrangements.

To sign the on-line guest book go to Beardsley Funeral Home.

Millennials are Bringing Back the Milkmen

Home milk deliveries from local dairies and creameries used to be a part of the daily routine for many families up to the 1950s and ’60s. However as it became easier and cheaper to purchase milk from the store, the milkman began to disappear.

However as many Millenials shift to more sustainable ways of living, avoiding unnecessary plastic and waste, the milkmen and women of London UK- are making a come back.

It turns out that many will pay a little more for a service, if it’s better bid to help the environment. 

Milk&More and Parker Dairies of London UK have both seen a dramatic increase in their demand for glass bottles since 2018. Claiming that David Attenborough’s Blue Planet II is the catalyst for the uptake. 

With close to a 25 percent increase in two-years – figures estimate that doorstep deliveries make up 3 percent of all milk sales in the UK. Which is around 1 million pints per day. 

Depot manager, Paul Lough of Parker Dairies thinks this interest in glass bottles is “absolutely phenomenal”. In less than a year, he gained 382 new customers, and of these new calls – 95 percent are getting glass bottles.

Paul says: “People are much more environmentally conscious and so they are asking if we do glass,”. Since glass milk bottles can be reused up to 25 times before they are recycled into new bottles, it’s a favorable way to decrease waste. Plus, everything just tastes better when it comes from a cold glass bottle.

In addition to milk deliveries, Paul has started to offer other services to his customers, he knows that the glass bottle dairy has attracted a younger crowd, and so he is working alongside the demographic, improving their product list to also include things like sourdough bread and local honey.

Meanwhile, a fellow company Milk&More says that it has gained more than 2,500 customers in just one month. With an equivalent of up to five new milk rounds, 90 percent of these customers are also requesting the iconic glass bottles. 

Patrick Müller, managing director of Milk&More, said: “The glass bottle is an exciting product… We think that it has a future.” It’s no longer just a thing of the past. “We believe the tradition of the milkman has some fantastic elements that are relevant now. They are a reliable presence for pre-breakfast delivery, they offer an exciting product range including locally sourced produce, and can be a part of the community.

“We just have to make them relevant for the modern consumer.”    

Patrick says his new customers are aged around 35 years old, many with young families with a double income. 

“It’s popular with families, so people that care about the local community and local produce. They want the story behind their produce but they don’t have the time to get it.

“We talked with customers and they said they enjoy the experience of the glass bottle – the childhood memories – and they want to reduce their plastic wastage.”

Let’s welcome back the milkman and milkwoman ~ 

Source: The Hearty Soul

Livestock losses another blow to Australian milk industry in decline

Farm groups say devastating fires that have torn through two of Australia’s key dairy production areas will cause a further decline in the country’s already decades-low milk production levels.

Shaughn Morgan, CEO of the industry group Dairy Connect, said about 30 to 40 farmers on the NSW South Coast had been affected, with some reporting they had lost the bulk of their livestock.

He said the fires were another stress for an industry already under “enormous pressure” from drought, high feed prices, “unfair” milk supply agreements and, in many instances, farm-gate milk prices that did not cover their costs of production.

A cow at a burnt farm in Gippsland, Victoria. Early estimates from Gippsland and northern Victoria are that up to 13,000 beef and dairy cows have been lost to fire.
A cow at a burnt farm in Gippsland, Victoria. Early estimates from Gippsland and northern Victoria are that up to 13,000 beef and dairy cows have been lost to fire.Credit:Joe Armao

Amid these pressures, Australian dairy production fell to less than 9 billion litres last financial year – the lowest volume since 1996 – and Dairy Australia expects production to fall another 3 to 5 per cent this year.

“If we’re not cautious and we continue to lose dairy farmers at the rate that we’ve got, then the amount of milk production will continue to decrease and if it decreases it means we’ll need to source milk elsewhere,” Mr Morgan said. “It questions food security in the long-term.”

The NSW Department of Primary Industries estimates about 3900 head of livestock have been killed or euthanised due to bushfires in the state this summer.

United Dairyfarmers of Victoria president Paul Mumford said early estimates from Gippsland and northern Victoria were that up to 13,000 beef and dairy cows have been lost to fire, with the heaviest casualties among one- and two-year-old cows.

“They’re our generation for next year’s milk production and the year after, so it’s going to be quite problematic for farmers. It’s going to leave a hole in their long-term planing,” Mr Mumford said.

He said even cows that survived would produce less milk due to the stress of the fires.

Mr Mumford said the fires would have a substantial impact on the national milk pool, but not enough to cause a shortage for consumers. However, he said it would keep a brake on any recovery in national production levels for the next year or longer.

The industry groups said the priority now was to ensure farmers could run generators and milk their cows, and had access to feed where required.

Farm-gate milk prices are at record highs on the back of high global prices and demand and reduced local supply, as farmers are hit with high feed costs and drought.

Shares in Australian dairy giant Bega Cheese fell 9.3 per cent on Monday amid fears over its milk supply and a potential further increase in milk prices.

Source: smh.com.au

Sorry, But Emotional Support Cow Ashley P Is the Only ‘Bachelor’ Contestant That Matters

So idk about you, but I’ve spent a significant amount of some time thinking about how I would do my entrance if I ever went on The Bachelor. However, no amount of my time or planning could have topped the most magnificent entrance on tonight’s premiere of Peter Weber’s season. And real ones will know that I’m *obviously* talking about Jenna, the incredible contestant who brought Peter a cow.

Cow in hand, Jenna walks up to Peter, says that Ashley P is her “emotional support cow,” and then walks off, leaving Peter with Ashley. Honestly, it was amazing, and Ashley P is now the only Bachelor contestant who will ever matter to me. In fact, I’m hoping that Ashley makes it to the finals because we’re on the 24th season of this show and really what better way to switch it up? Not only does Ashely P have some lovely curves, but she seems friendly and downright cuddly. I mean, just look at this lady:

image

ABC

Twitter obviously went wild for our girl Ash, and to quote one very astute user, “Ashley P isn’t the contestant we want she’s the contestant we need.”

Jenna DeMoulin@jdemoulin22

Ashley P isn’t the contestant we want she’s the contestant we need.

 

View image on Twitter

View image on Twitter

On the dramatic season finale of The Bachelor…

View image on Twitter
 
Now please excuse me while I make an Ashley P stan account, byeeeee!
Source: Cosmopolitan

USDA Could Announced Another Trade Aid Payment for Farmers

Despite positive trade news of late, USDA could soon announce another tranche of tariff relief payments to reimburse producers for last year’s financial losses.

The department has promised up to $14.5 billion in direct aid for 2019 production (on top of $8.6 billion provided for 2018 losses), and officials haven’t ruled out an entirely new program for 2020, reports POLITICO.

Trade aid and other government payments were largely responsible for keeping net farm income afloat in 2019. The bailout has faced growing scrutiny from ag economists and lawmakers who have questioned the fairness of how the money is distributed across the industry.

But there’s been little effort by Congress to interfere with the program, widely seen as a lifeline for farmers amid Trump’s trade storm.
Source: Wisconsin Ag Connection

Missouri city sues, alleging dairy contaminated river

A southern Missouri city alleges in a lawsuit that a Dairy Farmers of America plant is regularly releasing untreated wastewater into a river.

Cabool is seeking $1.2 million in reimbursement, claiming in the suit that it has to spend more money with its own wastewater treatment to address the problem. The suit also seeks other compensation and for the court to order DFA to stop releasing untreated wastewater into the Big Piney River, the Springfield News-Leader reports.

The city says it first became aware of the potential issue in February 2018. The lawsuit mentions 26 specific dates, most recently Aug. 21, 2019.

The suit says the dairy’s actions damage the quality of the river and open the city to violations of the federal Clean Water Act.

Court documents filed in the case say the Missouri Department of Natural Resources found the DFA in violation of its treatment permit in July.

Dairy Farmers of America said in a written statement that although it believes the allegations are “unfounded,” it has been implementing improvement to its wastewater system. The statement said many of those improvements were previously planned.

The Big Piney River is 110 miles (177.03 kilometers) long and is a tributary of the Gasconade River.

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All information contained in these pages that is NOT the property of eDairy News and is NOT considered “in the public domain” by legal regulations, are trademarks of their respective owners and recognized by our company as such. The publication on the eDairy News website is made for the purpose of gathering information, respecting the norms contained in the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works; in Law 11.723 and other applicable norms.

Any claim arising from the information contained on the eDairy News website will be submitted to the jurisdiction of the Ordinary Courts of the First Judicial District of the Province of Córdoba, Argentine Republic, with a seat in the City of Córdoba, to the exclusion of any another jurisdiction, including the Federal.

 

Jersey Quebec Announces Winners from their 2019 All-Quebec Contest

With more than 60 subjects proposed for the contest, Jersey Quebec has announced the results from their 2019 All-Quebec Contest!

Congratulations to all for the exceptional quality of animals nominated!

To view the results visit the Jersey Quebec website.

‘We are having to shoot them’: Farmers recount ‘heartbreaking’ toll of livestock losses in bushfires

The Federal Agriculture Minister fears stock losses from the recent Australian bushfires will exceed 100,000, as farmers around the country begin to assess the fires’ impacts to their properties and livestock.

Key points:

  • Farmers are having to shoot stock too badly injured by bushfire to survive
  • Nine per cent of the national cattle herd and 12 per cent of the national sheep flock live in areas impacted by the fires
  • The Government has arranged 100 veterinarians to help with livestock assessments

WARNING: This article contains content which some readers may find distressing.

On the last day of 2019, a fire burnt towards Belinda Attree’s property in the Nariel Valley, near Corryong in Victoria’s north.

Like many other farmers, her family made the decision to open the farm gates to give their cattle the best chance of escaping the blaze, but many did not survive.

“It’s heartbreaking,” she said.

“The cattle were just dead in the paddock and my husband was just trying to put them all in one place to dispose of them.

“Having to pick them up on the forks of the tractor — he said they just fall apart.

“They just cook on the inside and explode.”

The race to treat those injured in the fires has started and it is understood many more livestock will need to be euthanised.

“We had cows with calves at foot,” Ms Attree said.

“Their teats are all burnt and they can’t feed their calves.

“Walking these cows down to the yard — there were calves just dropping, falling down and not able to walk, and we were having to go back and shoot them.”

Vets to assess stock

The Federal Government has made 100 veterinarians available to assist in assessing the livestock left standing, in similar situations across the country.

The Federal Agriculture Minister, Bridget McKenzie, said they were working with State Governments to understand the level of catastrophe.

“Last week I was out on the ground looking at the Corryong fire impact, and there were thousands of head dead there,” she said.

“In the South Australian fires — the Adelaide Hills — there would have been a little over 3,000 head deceased as a result of the fires directly, but in the subsequent weeks we’ve seen stock really dying because of heat stress and smoke inhalation.

“The Kangaroo Island fires, they’re talking tens of thousands of sheep and cattle so it’s going to be quite devasting on the national heard.”

Ms McKenzie said with active fires still burning, delivering fodder and disposing of the deceased animals had been prioritised.

“When we are talking to state farming organisations, they are saying first and foremost we need to get fodder into these herds, and they also need clear water,” she said.

“The second thing they are asking is around access back to property and the fencing recovery task … and mental health issues that will be ongoing.”

Ms McKenzie said the government was looking to have dead livestock buried within a week.

“We know the disposal of livestock deceased from the fires is of paramount urgency,” she said.

“We know communities and farmers are struggling to deal with what are massive stock losses.”

Full extent of the loss won’t be known for months

A map put together by agriculture market analyst company Mecardo found about 8.6 million head of sheep and 2.3 million cattle live in areas impacted by the bushfires across Victoria and New South Wales, making up about 12 per cent of the sheep flock and nine per cent of the national cattle herd.

Senior market analyst Matt Dalgleish said because of the size of the area impacted, it could be months before the exact figures on stock losses were known.

“It’s a far bigger area than what was impacted by the Queensland floods, and that took about 3 months before we knew about the amount of cattle impacted,” he said.

Mr Dalgleish said alongside the initial stock loss there would be issues with feeding animals that survived.

“A lot of these areas have been fairly heavily drought impacted,” he said.

“You’ve got farmers that have been paying a lot of money to bring feed in to try and sustain the animals.

“Now this fire has potentially taken away all that investment they’ve made in trying to keep their flock or herd alive.”

Mr Dalgliesh said Australia was already facing a tight season for cattle and sheep numbers around the country.

“When we do get a reasonable enough turn in the weather it’s going to be a big scramble for those that want to get back in [to livestock production],” he said.

“It’s going to cost a lot of money to rebuild animal numbers.”

Dairy industry to be hit

Mr Dalgliesh said they would expect substantial flow-on effects to the dairy industry.

He said the sector, particularly around Bega, had already faced turbulent times prior to the fires.

“They’re now facing a situation where they have not been able to milk their animals for 48 to 60 hours because of the fires, and that also starts to impact the production of milk,” Mr Dalgliesh said.

“The supply chain from the farm and to the processors is also going to be disrupted by road closures.”

Ms McKenzie said power outages had also impacted dairy farms in the region.

“Because of the perishable nature of the product, a lot of them were very well prepared with generators, but now those generators after a week, and as the power shortages continue, will be needing to be fuelled,” she said.

Meanwhile in Victoria, Ms Attree said she knew of farms where milk supply that had been left to waste.

“The milk trucks can’t get in, they’re still having to milk their cows and feed their cows,” she said.

“And then they’re having to open up the vat and let the milk run out because it can’t get collected.

“It’s heartbreaking.”

Source: ABC

Bales and bales of hay roll in for bushfire-affected farmers

Victorians have generously chipped in with cash donations, clothes and food for the many people suffering the impacts of the state’s devastating bushfires.

But a very particular form of charity is proving especially welcome among the farmers in east and north-east Victoria.

Convoys of hay at Bairnsdale, ready to distribute to farms.
Convoys of hay at Bairnsdale, ready to distribute to farms.CREDIT:FROM DARREN CHESTER MP

The saleyards at Bairnsdale, the gateway to fire-ravaged East Gippsland, have been transformed into a kind of clearing house for donated farm fodder.

Thousands of bales of hay have been transported into the region with trucks arriving often unannounced from near and far.

 

On Sunday community leaders and emergency workers at the saleyards took advantage of cooler conditions and clearer skies to help direct trucks to fire-affected areas where animals were in dire need of food.

Many cows, beef cattle and sheep have been killed in the fires, especially in the hills of east and north-east Victoria. Of those that survived, many have been without food for days.

A clearly moved East Gippsland mayor John White told The Age how trucks full of hay had rolled into Bairnsdale like cavalry over the horizon in a mid-century western.

He said he was not sure where all the trucks had come from but some were from far away including from the distant Western District. “It’s incredible, it’s overwhelmed us,” said Cr White.

“Some animals haven’t had anything to eat since New Year’s Eve.”

Cr White said it was hard to explain how farmers from other areas knew where to send the hay. “It’s the good old bush telegraph,” he said.

Speaking from the Bairnsdale saleyards on Sunday local federal MP Darren Chester said the donations of hay from other farming communities had taken him aback.

“I’m standing here watching truckload after truckload of fodder pass by.”

Mr Chester described the fires as “of a scale we haven’t seen before in terms of the vast area that has been burned”.

It was still unclear exactly how many farm animals have died.

The convoys of hay may well be the difference between life and death for many of those that have survived.
Source: The Ag

Fonterra unaffected by Oz bushfires

A Fonterra Australia spokesperson says however, it is keeping a close eye on developments.

“Thankfully, the areas where our factories and farmers are located remain largely unaffected…..with no immediate end to the fires in sight and with the continued dry conditions as a result of the drought, we are staying close to any emerging risks and our priority is to ensure our people and farmers are safe,” she says.

“With the huge challenges that these communities face, we are looking at what we can do to support them, as well as working with the dairy industry to enable support for affected farmers.

“As a first and immediate step, we have donated milk powder to our charity partner Foodbank which will go into emergency relief packs for those in need.”

Source: ruralnewsgroup.co.nz

Holstein Canada Celebrates a Decade of Success

Holstein Canada ended the decade with record numbers in both Registrations and Classifications. Producers submitted 316,302 Registrations by end-of-year 2019, 11,159 more than 2018’s record high. The Field team classified 272,976 animals – 1,704 more than in 2018 – and assessed an additional 83,789 animals for proAction® animal care.

These new benchmarks were made possible by the belief of Canadian producers in the value of our core services and the innovative Holstein Canada team. Since 2010, electronic Registrations went from 80% of all Registrations submitted to 95%. The revamp of our website in 2013 made it easier for producers to access and submit information.

“The more information you have on your herd the better management and breeding decisions you can make for future progress,” said Linda Markle, Manager of Herdbook & Genotyping Services. “Registration is a fundamental first step in the information gathering process, and it is why the percentage of registered Holsteins continues to increase in Canada year over year.”

Classification numbers have also increased over the last ten years. The Holstein Canada classifiers examined 17,000 more animals in 2019 than they did in 2010 from all breeds. More than 15,000 of these were Holstein animals.

“We require more from our cow today than in 2010, and the need to build a herd that is sustainable and healthy is more important than ever,” said Brad Eggink, Manager of Classification and Field Services. “Increased Classification numbers is a continued testament to our Canadian dairy producer utilizing their performance data to build a herd that is functionally optimal and suited to their environmental and management needs.”

Diversifying our services was not something we could have done alone. We began the period with the launch of the National Genomic Testing Service in partnership with Semex Alliance. In 2016, Holstein Canada became the service provider for Animal Care Assessments as part of the Dairy Farmers of Canada proAction Initiative. We ended the decade with the release of Compass, a herd management software designed and implemented with Lactanet and Zoetis. 930 Canadian producers now actively use this free program, with more signing on every week.

Holstein Canada was also pleased to begin collaborations with other breed organizations across the country. On top of in-office support and services, our Association began registering other breeds: Canadienne animals in 2013, Ayrshire in 2014, and Brown Swiss, Guernsey and Milking Shorthorn in 2016.

None of the success we have experienced could have been accomplished without a passionate and dedicated membership base, the dairy producers across Canada, and our industry partners. We look forward to a future of collaboration with the entire dairy industry, providing a healthy and sustainable industry for all.

Announcing the 90th Master Breeder Award Winners

The announcement of the Master Breeder recipients has become an annual tradition at Holstein Canada. This tradition is now in its 90th year, and we are pleased to announce the Master Breeders who will be honoured at the National Holstein Convention Master Breeder Gala in Regina, Saskatchewan on Saturday, April 18, 2020.

Of the breeders who received exciting news today, 11 (58%) are first-time recipients of a Shield. Two breeders are receiving it for the third time. The winners come from five provinces: eight breeders are from Quebec; four are from Ontario and British Columbia each; two are from Prince Edward Island.; and one is from Manitoba.

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Congratulations to the 2019 Master Breeder Recipients:

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Contact information for the winning producers is available on the Holstein Canada website. For more information, contact Steven Spriensma at 519-756-8300 ext. 234 or sspriensma@holstein.ca.

Since its beginning in 1929, the Master Breeder program has become the most coveted Holstein Canada award. Including this year’s winners, 1088 Master Breeder shields have been handed out since 1930 (for the year 1929). We recognize these breeders for having mastered the art of breeding balanced cattle – high production and outstanding conformation with great reproduction, health and longevity. Congratulations to the Master Breeders who joined the ranks of the most elite breeders across Canada in 2019!

The Coca-Cola Company Acquires Remaining Stake in fairlife LLC

The Coca-Cola Company today announced that it has acquired the remaining stake in fairlife LLC from its joint venture partner Select Milk Producers. Coca-Cola now owns 100% of fairlife, up from its previous 42.5% minority stake. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

fairlife LLC, which launched in 2012, started with a high-protein milk shake called Core Power and has grown to offer a broad portfolio of products in the fast-growing value-added dairy category in North America.

fairlife will continue to operate as a stand-alone business based in Chicago.

“We are excited for the next chapter of fairlife’s growth and innovation and look forward to continuing to work with our partners across the Coca-Cola system to meet fast-changing consumer needs in a vibrant category,” fairlife CEO Tim Doelman said. “We set out in 2012 to harness the power and nutrition of dairy and give people great-tasting products that provide the nutrition they are looking for. Our innovative product lines will continue to grow and improve with the strength and scale of The Coca-Cola Company.”

Growing category

Value-added dairy products have been growing steadily in the United States, in contrast to the traditional fluid milk category, with great-tasting, nutrient-dense fairlife milk products playing a significant role in that growth.

fairlife® ultra-filtered milk debuted in 2014, and sales have grown sharply since then, with strong double-digit growth each year since launch. According to Nielsen AMC, fairlife surpassed $500 million in retail sales last year.

fairlife’s continued growth has been supported by new product innovation ranging from delicious lactose-free, ultra-filtered milk with less sugar and more protein than competing brands, to high-protein recovery and nutrition shakes and drinkable snacks.

The brand also has been supported by the reach of Coca-Cola’s U.S. system with products distributed both through the Minute Maid distribution system, as well as by Coca-Cola bottlers across the country. In 2018, fairlife also launched in Canada and will begin local production and sourcing in Ontario in spring 2020. fairlife is also continuing to expand production capabilty in the U.S. by complementing production in Coopersville, Mich. and Waco, Texas with a new facility under construction in Goodyear, Ariz.

“fairlife is a great example of how we’re continually expanding our total beverage portfolio to bring people more of the brands they love,” said Jim Dinkins, president of Coca-Cola North America. “This agreement will help ensure that we continue to build on fairlife’s innovative history by combining their entrepreneurial spirit and innovation capabilities with the resources, reach and expertise of Coca-Cola.”

NOTE TO EDITORS: You can read more about the transaction and the future of fairlife in an online Q&A with Jim Dinkins and Tim Doelman here.

about fairlife, LLC

fairlife, LLC was founded in 2012 to produce nourishing and great-tasting milk beverages made using a patented cold-filtration process that removes some natural sugars while concentrating the protein and calcium naturally found in real cows’ milk. The line of delicious, lactose-free fairlife® products includes: fairlife® ultra-filtered milk, which has 50% more protein and 50% less sugar than regular milk; fairlife® with DHA, ultra-filtered milk with DHA Omega-3 fatty acids to support brain health; fairlife YUP!®, a line of flavored milks; fairlife Core Power® High Protein Shakes, a sports nutrition drink to support post-workout recovery; fairlife smart snacks®, a drinkable snack to help curb hunger between meals; fairlife® nutrition plan™, a nutrition shake to support one’s journey to better health; and the newly launched fairlife® creamers, coffee creamers designed to help enhance your coffee experience. In partnership with The Coca-Cola Company, fairlife ultra-filtered milk and Core Power high protein shakes are distributed throughout the United States (U.S.) and Canada; all other fairlife drinks are available in the U.S. To learn more about fairlife and its collection of products, please visit fairlife.com or follow the company on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.

About The Coca-Cola Company

The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is a total beverage company, offering over 500 brands in more than 200 countries and territories. In addition to the company’s Coca-Cola brand, our portfolio includes AdeS, Ayataka, Costa, Dasani, Del Valle, Fanta, Georgia, Gold Peak, Honest, innocent, Minute Maid, Powerade, Simply, smartwater, Sprite, vitaminwater and ZICO. We’re constantly transforming our portfolio, from reducing sugar in our drinks to bringing innovative new products to market. We’re also working to reduce our environmental impact by replenishing water and promoting recycling. With our bottling partners, we employ more than 700,000 people, helping bring economic opportunity to local communities worldwide. Learn more at www.coca-colacompany.com and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn.

Australian bushfires: Dairy farmers forced to pour milk down the drain

Thousands of litres of milk are being poured down the drain every day because no tankers could get through the fire ground to take the load.

The Bos family in Cudgewa in Victoria near the NSW border have to deal with more than most. 

Their two children, 12-year-old Calinda and 8-year-old Nixon, have an extremely rare condition only a few people in the world have, which involves around the clock care.

“Both my children have a rare neurological disorder called Angelman syndrome, it’s an intellectual disability- they have epilepsy they are non verbal,” mother Lynette Bos said, listing a host of challenges.

While dealing with the normal struggles of life, the family has been dealt a cruel blow with their farm devastated by the Corryong blaze.

The Bos family with reporter Christine Ahern.
The Bos family with reporter Christine Ahern. (Supplied)

Paddocks are blackened, cattle have been lost, fences are gone as well as feed.

“Well, hell is probably one way to put it,” father Matt Bos said.

The Bos family farm was devastated by the Corryong bushfire.
The Bos family farm was devastated by the Corryong bushfire. (Supplied)

Calinda and Nixon joined their parents out on the blackened earth as they fed their remaining cattle with what feed they have. The outlook is bleak

“We hopefully will get an autumn break, but we are looking at June before anything is available for the cattle to eat … and that’s if it rains in autumn,” Mr Bos said.

If that wasn’t bad enough, Lynette’s parents had their farm razed to the ground in the same fire. They were left with nothing but the clothes on their back.

“I went there yesterday to have a look but there is just nothing just nothing there,” Lynette said, fighting back tears.

Over the road there is a dairy farm where the situation is just as dire.

It’s hard to fathom, but thousands of litres of milk are being poured down the drain every day because there have simply been no milk tankers which could get through the fire ground to take the load.

“It’s just going out in the ground, it’s not getting through to the towns. It’s not getting through to the processor its just getting dumped,” said Phill Britton, who has travelled from Wagga to Cudgewa to help out his father-in-law on the dairy farm.

Calinda enjoying a laugh with Ahern.
Calinda enjoying a laugh with Ahern. (Supplied)

There are about 50 other dairy farms in the area. They have also had to dump thousands of litres of milk.

Today travelled with a convoy of milk and feed tankers from Tallangatta as they were finally allowed through to the fire zone, but farmers say they need more help.

“It’s totally crippling for the industry up this way. The milk price is down, the feed we cant get at the moment, so its just crippling everyone,” Mr Britton said.

He shows us the farm’s hay shed which is now a smouldering ruin. There were 900 hay bales, now there is nothing.

“A years worth of feed for all our stock gone … in half an hour,” Mr Britton said.

Mrs Bos says now more than ever they need the help of the community, as farmers face yet another challenge.

“We need Australia’s help and we need people to support each other and stick together there has been a bit of blaming going around Australia but we need to band together … unite not fight,” she said.

(If you would like to donate to the Bos family a Go Fund me page has been set up “Bos Family Fire Disaster Recovery”)

Source: 9Now

Minnesota’s struggling dairy farmers seek out Latino workers

Seventeen years ago, Paul and Craig Gjerde went all in on the dairy operation they run with their father in west-central Minnesota, expanding their herd from 125 cows to 300 and building a barn and milking parlor.

The Gjerdes have milked their share of cows and can do so if they need to, but with so many other duties — growing crops, feeding the animals, managing the farm’s finances — the men wouldn’t be able to run their operation efficiently without a few hired hands.

Yet, in recent years, finding people willing to work on the dairy farm, with its twice-a-day-milkings, physical demands and odd hours, has been difficult. Fortunately for the Gjerdes, they have found what they need in the Latino immigrant population that lives in the Willmar area. These days, four Latino employees milk the cows in the afternoon, clean the stalls and milking machines and then milk the cows again in the early morning, around 2:30 a.m.

“We need them,” Paul Gjerde said of his crew. “I don’t know how we would do it without them.”

It wasn’t always this way. The brothers remember when high school or college students would stop by, looking for work baling hay or doing the other tough jobs on farms. That hasn’t happened for 20 years; the only people willing to work on their farm these days, the brothers say, are Latinos, new to the country and looking to make a living.

The hub of the Gjerde enterprise is Paul Gjerde’s farm site five miles south of Sunburg, an old Norwegian settlement that still celebrates Syttende Mai (Norway’s independence day) and whose sole café still serves Klub (a Norwegian potato dumpling) every day.

From a distance, the farm is but a cluster of buildings that fades into an endless horizon of snow-covered fields dotted by groves of trees. Years ago, it was one of many dairy farms around here; now, it’s the only one in Kandiyohi County’s Arctander Township.

On a recent cold December day, Michelle Rodriquez hooked cows up to machines in a 16-stall milking parlor, eight cows on either side of her. Originally from El Salvador, Rodriquez has been working on the farm for about five years. She grew up on a small farm with chickens and pigs, so the surroundings here are comforting, the work familiar.

“I like the cows. And the work — it’s not too hard for me,” she said in halting English. She added, with a laugh, “the weather is bad, though. Driving (in the snow) is bad! But otherwise it’s fine.”

With her mother and two sisters living in Willmar, and two brothers in New York, Rodriguez said she had no plans to return to Central America, where her father remains. Minnesota was safe, with more opportunities to earn a paycheck, she said.

Nathan Hulinsky, a University of Minnesota Extension educator, said many dairy farmers, navigating a tight labor market, have found a source of workers in the Latino community.

“A lot of Hispanics don’t seem to mind the physical labor,” he said. “They are willing to take that job at a price that works for both sides, whereas I think some in the non-immigrant workforce maybe say, ‘I can go uptown and get the same money and an easier job.’”

The construction industry is one of the main competitors for dairy farmers who are looking for workers, Hulinsky said. Another one, at least in this region of the state, is turkey processing — namely the Jennie-O Turkey Store plant in Willmar. The Gjerdes were paying their workers $12.50 an hour in November, roughly comparable to what they believed was Jennie-O’s $13.50 wage for unskilled labor. (Recent job postings showed Jennie-O offering a starting wage of $14 for general production workers.)

To work for the Gjerdes, workers must provide a Social Security Number or a Green Card, a federal document that allows immigrants to live and work in the United States. A survey for the National Milk Producers Federation showed that Latinos make up about half the workforce at dairy farms around the country. Statistics for Minnesota were not available.

In addition to finding workers, many challenges perplex the small dairy farmer: this year’s unusually wet growing season, competition from large-scale dairy operations, changing consumer habits and, perhaps most significantly, volatile milk prices. (In 2018, the price per-hundredweight of milk – how dairy farmers are paid – hovered around $14 or $15, down about $10 from record highs reached four years earlier. (It inched back up in 2019 and reached about $19 in December).

The stress is showing. According to the state Department of Agriculture, Minnesota had 2,763 dairy farms at the start of 2019 and had 2,536 in November — a drop of about 8%. (The agency bases its numbers on dairy farm licenses).

Obert Gjerde, Paul and Craig’s 80-year-old father, still helps on the farm. It’s been a good life — challenging but rewarding. But he’s not sure he’d recommend it to his grandchildren — not now, anyway, with commodity prices the way they are. “You worked hard and you did well,” he said in summing up his life’s credo. “It’s not necessarily that way anymore.”

The future of dairy farming, perhaps, can be found a few miles south of the Gjerde farm, where acquaintances run an 1,800-head operation. Or a bit to the west, where a massive dairy operation milks about 8,100 cows a day.

The brothers don’t want to sell their herd or do anything else. They do wonder, however, about trying something different – perhaps selling bottled milk to the wealthy cabin owners who live on lakes throughout the region. It will take some creativity to survive. They have also talked about joining a recent trend in dairy farming: robotic milking.

For now, they hang on, thankful for the Latino workers who have helped to keep their operation afloat, who have proven to be reliable, who have made friends with Paul Gjerde’s children. “They’re good workers. They show up on time and they’re big on cleanliness,” he said. “These guys are really good.”

Source: Associated Press

Borden Becomes Second Big U.S. Milk Producer to File for Bankruptcy

Borden Dairy Co. filed for bankruptcy, becoming the second major U.S. milk seller to do so in two months as competitive pressures, declining consumption and falling profits made its debt load unsustainable.

Known for its mascot Elsie the Cow, the Dallas-based company listed assets and liabilities of between $100 million and $500 million in its Chapter 11 filing in Delaware. The company, founded more than 160 years ago, said in a statementthat normal operations will continue while it works out a recovery plan.

A boom in dairy alternatives like soy, rice and nut milk, along with rising prices for raw milk have put the squeeze on Borden, Chief Financial Officer Jason Monaco said in court papers. Added pressure came from retailers investing in their own low-cost dairy products.

“While milk remains a household item in the United States, people are simply drinking less of it,” Monaco said. “In parallel, since the turn of the century, the number of U.S. dairy farms has rapidly declined.”

Higher Costs

That’s choking supply, with the price of raw milk up 27% since January 2019 and expected to rise more, even as retail prices and margins are dropping, court papers show. The same trends helped drive Borden’s larger rival, Dean Foods Co., to file for bankruptcy on Nov. 12.

Private equity firm ACON Investments LLC and affiliates acquired Borden in 2017 and the company received debt facilities from GSO Capital Partners and PNC Bank, according to a statement at the time.

Affiliates of KKR Credit Advisors US LLC and Franklin Square Holdings LP now hold $175 million of Borden debt in the form of a term loan, while PNC holds a $30 million term loan and a $75 million revolving loan.

“Borden is Ebitda-positive and growing, but we must achieve a more viable capital structure,” Chief Executive Officer Tony Sarsam said in a statement, referring to the widely followed profit measure of earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization. “This reorganization will strengthen our position for future prosperity.”

Liquidity Needed

Borden reported a net loss of $42.4 million for 2019 through Dec. 7, widening from 2018’s $14.6 million deficit on net sales of $1.18 billion.

To continue operating in bankruptcy, Borden needs to tap an account containing $26.6 million that it established in 2017 to pay for a settlement with two pension funds, Monaco said.

Borden has more than 3,200 employees, about 22% of whom are unionized, Monaco said. The firm retained Conway MacKenzie Inc. for financial advice.

The case is Borden Dairy Co., 20-10010-CSS, U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware

Source: Bloomberg

Dairy Girl Network is to Host Two Events in California in Early 2020

The Dairy Girl Network (DGN), an organization supporting all women in dairy by enhancing lives and creating opportunities, announces two events taking place in California in January and February 2020.

DGN will be hosting a new event in California during the California Holstein Association’s state convention. The DGN Sharing Wisdom and Connect event will be held at The Penny in San Luis Obispo, California, on Friday, January 24, 2020 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The event will be open to dairywomen involved in all aspects of the dairy industry attending the Holstein meeting or just from California for a day of education and networking. Buses will leave the Embassy Suites at 8:45 a.m. and will handle transportation to and from the event. If traveling in for the day or want to drive separate, parking is available at The Penny.

The DGN event will be held in beautiful downtown SLO at The Penny and include training seminars, lunch and wine tasting. The speakers will include Celeste Setrinni, a cattle rancher and owner of a design and communications business and Erin Nutcher, partner in Hidden Valley Dairy, who will share about her agriculture advocacy experiences and tips. Also speaking will be Paul Swearingen, Core-Leaders Network Founder who will cover conflict resolution and lead an activation and communication exercise. Welcoming the group and enjoying in the day will be Carrie Mess, a DGN Board Member and blogger at DairyCarrie.

Event ticket price is $50.00 and includes transportation, lunch, wine tasting and a DGN special gift. All registrations are due January 8th. There is a student discount available. Visit DairyGirlNetwork.com for registration and further details.

The second event in California will be held at World Ag Expo, Tulare, California, International Agri-Center. The Connect Event during World Ag Expo will be a coffee break open house which will be available at booth DS 105/106 on Wednesday, February 12, 2020 from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. A short program will be held at 10:30 a.m. Join other dairywomen for a quick recharge to talk about your lives involving dairy farming. The event is for all women involved with any part of dairy – whether as a calf feeder, dairy owner, marketing or sales consultant servicing dairy farms or cheese producers, veterinarian, researchers, etc. If there is a dairy cow involved in what you do, you’re invited. The DGN Connect event price for World Ag Expo is $10.00. Attendees will enjoy coffee, snacks and receive a special DGN gift.

For the second consecutive year at World Ag Expo, a Family Lounge will also be provided by Dairy Girl Network at booth DS 105/106. The Family Lounge provides a much-needed quiet space for families and new mothers. Amenities in the Lounge include a comfortable chair for nursing/pumping, a diaper changing station with supplies, and a place to rest and recharge. This quiet space is perfect for families or nursing mothers to escape the hustle-and-bustle of World Ag Expo.

Registration for both events are now open. Those interested can visit DairyGirlNetwork.com to learn more and to register. DGN asks that those who plan to attend pre-register for each event.

The Dairy Girl Network is supported by Vision sponsors: Dairy Herd Management and Mycogen Seeds and Sustaining sponsors: DeLaval, Diamond V, DMI and Land O’ Lakes, in addition to contributions by event sponsors. Event sponsors for the DGN Sharing Wisdom and Connect event: Merced County Holstein Club, Connor Agriscience, TLAY Dairy Video Sales, and Virtus Nutrition. Event sponsors for the World Ag Expo Connect event: Connor Agriscience. Learn more about the organization and sponsorship opportunities at DairyGirlNetwork.com.

The Dairy Girl Network connects all women of the dairy industry, encouraging ideas and camaraderie in an effort to achieve personal and professional development. Designed as a welcoming network of passionate women involved in dairy, relationships will grow through shared experience, support and inspiration.

University Trial Shows Oregano Essential Oil Can Help Reduce Antimicrobial Resistance in Calves

Antimicrobial resistance is one of the greatest threats globally to human health and has been predicted to be responsible for 10 million deaths a year by 2050 if not acted upon.

The levels of E. coli bacteria, that are resistant to a fourth-generation cephalosporin antibiotic, can be significantly reduced by adding an oregano essential oil to calf diets, according to research undertaken at the University of Reading in the UK.

University researchers, Dr Partha Ray and Dr Caroline Rymer, undertook a trial to determine the effect of supplementing Anpario’s Orego-Stim Liquid (a source of 100 percent natural oregano essential oil), in waste milk fed to dairy calves, on the population of antimicrobial resistant bacteria in their faeces.

Holstein male calves were offered either waste milk treated with Orego-Stim Liquid for ten days or a control diet of the same waste milk source without the addition of Orego-Stim Liquid. After the initial ten days, all calves were fed the same ration of untreated waste milk and concentrates until weaning.

The results of the study were very promising, offering a potential solution in helping to reduce the presence of antimicrobial resistant bacteria. In the faeces of calves fed waste milk with no Orego-Stim, 44.1 percent of E. coli present were resistant to the cephalosporin antibiotic (cefquinome). However, in calves fed waste milk supplemented with Orego-Stim Liquid until day ten, this was significantly reduced to only 12.6 perecnt of total E. coli being resistant to cefquinome.

Dr Partha Ray

“Oregano essential oil supplementation not only reduced the abundance of cefquinome-resistant E. coli but also delayed the emergence of resistance to cefquinome,” says Dr Partha Ray, lecturer in dairy animal science at Reading University. “We are conducting further studies to understand the mechanism underlying the effect of Orego-Stim feeding on antimicrobial resistance in the gut of young cattle. Improving our understanding of the mechanism is the only way we can refine the practice of feeding the essential oil based supplement to make it more sustainable.”

These antibiotics are commonly used in human and animal medicine and are classified as ‘highest priority critically important’, therefore safeguarding their use is an absolute necessity.

Dr Caroline Rymer

“Feeding supplements which have antimicrobial activity may themselves encourage the development of antimicrobial resistance. It was therefore very pleasing that there was no evidence that feeding Orego-Stim increased the resistance of E. coli to any of the antibiotic classes tested. It was even more promising that resistance to the critically important cefquinome was reduced”, said Dr Caroline Rymer, associate professor of animal science at Reading University.

Orego-Stim is a 100 percent natural source of oregano essential oil, which has a proven broad-spectrum antimicrobial effect as a result of its composition and the presence of compounds such as carvacrol, p-cymene and thymol.

Desperate Australian dairy farmer who fought fires for 13 hours begs PM for help

Smoke billows on Thursdsay from East Gippsland, Victoria. The regions dairy farms have been devastated. Farmer Craig Calvert made a desperate plea to the Prime Minister to change land management practices to save lives and prevent future catastrophe

A dairy farmer who fought horrific 500m fireballs from his family’s property has made a desperate plea to Prime Minister Scott Morrison for help.

Craig Calvert spent 13 hours on Monday and Tuesday fighting off an inferno to save his family at Wiseleigh, Victoria – and faces another deadly battle on Saturday.

Mr Calvert asked Prime Minister Scott Morrison to learn how to manage the bush properly to prevent devastating bushfires.

‘Mr Morrison, please, throw your gloves on, come down here and see me,’ Mr Calvert told Sunrise.

‘I’ve got an extensive network who can help with knowledge of the bush, how the Australian environment is actually meant to run. It doesn’t run on paperwork.’ 

PLEA FOR HELP 

Dairy Farmer Craig Calvert says  Bruthen in East Gippsland needs:

* A Telstra generator at Bruthen so people don’t lose communications 

* Supplies – especially feed for livestock

* Generators for the dairies 

* Electricians

* Help with potential health issues caused by hundreds of dead cattle 

* Better land management to prevent catastrophic fires in future 

He pleaded with the Prime Minister to ‘step up’ and not to let people die in the future, or to let history repeat itself.  

The exhausted Country Fire Authority volunteer made his impassioned plea after fighting off a massive bushfire with his father, Peter, at his dairy farm for 13 hours over Monday night and Tuesday.

He had barely seven hours of sleep in the week since the nightmare began, and told Daily Mail Australia he couldn’t remember what day it was now or when the fire had been.

As he fought the inferno he watched horrific fireballs from 50m to 500m wide jump across a gully.

The first wave of fire ignited eucalyptus gas in the air above the trees, burning like white flame in mid-air without touching the canopy.

 
 

Eucalyptus trees contain highly flammable eucalyptus oil which evaporates into the air on hot days providing a gas as explosive as jet fuel.  

The second round came through the canopy – then the ground fire came. 

Mr Calvert had to retreat three or four times as he fought the horror blaze and saved his farm.

He said every home in a valley called Dirty Hollow had been destroyed and that it was lucky nobody was killed.

Mr Calvert, a sixth generation farmer whose family have been in the area for 169 years, said the bush had been managed properly for 40,000 years by Aboriginal people who didn’t even have modern equipment.

 

‘If they can do it, we can do it … help us out,’ he said on Friday in his passionate plea to Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

Mr Calvert said loggers warned of disaster 40 years ago when the bush was ‘locked up’ and wasn’t properly prepared for fire risk.

The exhausted volunteer and his family were preparing on Friday for a repeat of dangerous fire conditions with 40C temperatures forecast for Saturday.

 Mr Calvert’s wife Celeste headed in to the nearby town of Bruthen to stock up on supplies for Craig to defend the property on Saturday. 

Celeste and the couple’s four daughters are now safely in the town of Bairnsdale. 

 

Mr Calvert said the area urgently needs more supplies especially feed for livestock.

He implored Telstra to bring a generator to the nearby town of Bruthen so the surrounding areas don’t lose communications during Saturday’s forecast fire weather.

Daily Mail Australia has asked Telstra for a response.  

Climate protesters halted hazard reduction burns which reduce dangerous fuel loads in the Mossiface area near Mr Calvert’s dairy farm in September. 

Gippsland’s Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Beth Roberts told local radio station TRFM that Forest Fire Management Victoria crews had been planning to ignite controlled burns on September 4.

 

They were stopped by protesters who entered the bush and refused to leave.

‘These burns are strategic asset protection burns, intended to protect human life, property and community assets from summer bushfires,’ Dr Roberts told TRFM.  

Victoria Police were called to the incident, Dr Roberts said.  

The catastrophic bushfires that have razed eastern Australia since October are not without precedent. 

 

Almost four million hectares were burnt to the ground in the summer of 2003 causing devastating loss of livestock, bushland, and property across five states, with the Australian Capital Territory worst affected.

A Parliamentary inquiry into the fires heard there had been grossly inadequate hazard reduction burning for too long, and that local knowledge and experience was being ignored by bureaucrats.

The inquiry made 59 recommendations many of which focused on hazard reduction and co-ordination between states and agencies to improve land management and prevention strategies. 

Source: The Daily Mail

Concern over ‘viability’ of dairy farms and milk supplies as Australian bushfires spread

Dairy Connect has warned the Australian bushfire crisis could affect the supply of fresh milk as farmers try to stockpile fodder and fuel. Photograph: Tracey Nearmy/AAP

Dairy farmers were racing to shore up supplies of fodder and fuel on Friday as they prepared for a hot weekend that could see the return of fires that have already ravaged much of Australia’s east coast.

Two key dairy areas, East Gippsland in Victoria and the New South Wales south coast, were heavily burned during fires over the new year, adding to the woes of an industry already suffering from a crippling drought and persistently low milk prices.

Supermarkets say the fire crisis has not curbed the supply of fresh milk but the head of NSW farmers’ body Dairy Connect, Shaughn Morgan, said it could do so if it continued.

“It could have an impact, depending on the amount of milk that’s not collected,” he said.

He said it was hard to get information but the fires were “impacting quite heavily on the south coast from Nowra down”.

“These guys aren’t able to get the milk from their farms, they’re spilling their milk,” he said. “We’re very grateful to the processors, who are continuing to pay the farmers.”

He said he hoped the declaration of a state of emergency by the state government on Thursday would allow roads to open and farmers to bring in fodder.

“If there’s no fodder to feed them [the cows],” he said. “It raises serious questions about the viability of their farms.

“Saturday’s a real concern because it is another flashpoint – it’s going to be something that we need to monitor really closely.

“The people down there are at their wit’s end and have been under enormous pressure for days.”

The president of the United Dairyfarmers of Victoria, Paul Mumford, said there had been reports of pasture damage and some stock losses in East Gippsland and up into the state’s north-east, but information was “still reasonably sketchy coming out of both areas”.

“The big problem farmers are having is fire damage not only to pastures but infrastructure – but more importantly getting services back on to the farm.”

He said farmers needed fodder to feed their cows, and fuel to power milking equipment.

“The cows have to be fed and the cows also have to be milked,” he said. “Some farms may not have been able to milk their cows since the fire went through their district.

“Because tomorrow and Sunday are going to be such problem days for heat, from what I understand today no fodder or services will be allowed in or out of those districts until the worst of the danger has passed.”

Max Roberts, the chairman of milk processor Bega, said it had been difficult to collect milk.

“If they’re not on fire, we can’t get to them,” he said. “There’ve been a number of farms that haven’t milked for up to 50 hours, 60 hours, and that’s an issue for cow health.”

He said the company was working on getting fodder and diesel to farms, while emergency services were helping to get milk tankers out to dairy farms.

“It’s highly unusual to get a milk tanker turning up with a police escort but that’s what’s happening.”

He was “not sure” how much it was costing Bega to pay for milk it could not collect.

“It’d be a bigger cost if the farm went broke,” he said. “You take a longer-term view on these things.”

Production at the company’s factory in Bega will grind to a standstill over the weekend.

“The factory will close down all but a skeleton operation all through Saturday and Sunday to allow people to stay home and look after themselves,” Roberts said. “There will be milk tanker pickups but again the instruction is that, if it isn’t safe to do it, don’t.”

Steve Guthrey, a former dairy farmer who now grows fodder and agists livestock at his property near Bega, said the community was bracing for the weekend.

“Pretty much everybody’s just watching and waiting for the moment,” he said. “We know we’ve got a pretty serious day tomorrow.

“We’re all on tenterhooks, preparing our houses and farms as best we can.”

He said he feared fires to the north-east and north-west could join together.

“We haven’t gotten any aircraft down here to help us,” he said. “A lot of the vehicles down here are really limited in what they can do.

“We’ve run out of irrigation water now. The dams are virtually empty … We’ve still got a long summer ahead of us now.”

Source: The Guardian 

South Coast dairy farmer saves herd as fire roars through his property

All it took was 10 minutes for dairy farmer Robert Miller to have half of his South Coast farmland wiped out by fire.

As he got his 1000 head dairy herd to safety where they stood on concrete under sprinklers, Mr Miller made sure he was prepared for what was to come.

“It hit the farm at 1pm and it was all over by 1.10pm, it came through very fast,” Mr Miller said.

“It was ferocious, it was catastrophic.

“We had done all the preparation we could have, we had the equipment and water in place but we lost power so we had to use generators to power everything.”

The fire destroyed 161 hectares of pasture – half of his farmland near Milton.

And he still doesn’t know the fate of 400 of his replacement heifers that were at Cobargo.

But the worst is far from over as they brace themselves for similar conditions, which are expected on Saturday.

In the meantime they are dumping milk as they can’t get diesel to “run tractors to run the generators to run the dairy”.

“We have generators to milk so we are rationing the diesel.”

But the fire is not out and they need diesel brought inurgently and fodder.

“If we have to fight fires again, it’s going to be a tough call,” he said.

For the past eight weeks they have been buying a semi-trailer truck load of fodder every day to feed the herd.

“We can’t get trucks in and we lost a lot of silage, we have a lot of round bales that have been burned,” he said.

‘We have a bit of fodder on hand but not much.”

Unless it rains, he will be selling heifers on the export market as he won’t have the feed.

“I need animals as replacement but don’t have a choice now,” he said.

To add to his burden is the fact he his not eligible for drought assistance as he lives in a coastal area.

Mr Miller said according to the desertification maps he was in a high rainfall coastal areas making them not eligible for assistance even though the Department of Primary Industries drought maps say otherwise.

“We have been burned out, we are in drought and we still can’t get a single dollar for assistance,’ he said.

“I tried to apply but I’m not eligible and we need it now.

“Someone has to say something to Prime Minister Scott Morrison.”

Source: The Land

The face in the fire: Dairy farmer claims to have spotted the DEVIL lurking in bushfire

The devil’s face has apparently appeared in the bushfire smoke out of regional Victoria, according to a dairy farmer. 

Craig Calvert shared the photo showing the face coming from the smoke of the fires in East Gippsland.

The photo was captured by a friend of Mr Culvert’s as bushfires took hold of the region, including his farm near Sarsfield on Monday.

Pictured: the devil's face has appeared in an image of the bushfire smoke out of regional Victoria

Pictured: the devil’s face has appeared in an image of the bushfire smoke out of regional Victoria

‘I’m not really into hokey pokey spooky stuff but there’s a big devil face right in the fire,’ he told Sunrise on Friday.

The 6th Generation Farmer spent 13 hours defending his property with his father where he described being hit five separate times, with fireballs jumping across the trees and fire so fierce it created a ‘white flame’.

He described being shocked after seeing the photo.

‘You won’t believe it, I don’t believe it,’ he said.

The farmer’s home was the only property left standing in the valley of Dirty Hollow, thanks in part to his family’s efforts and a last minute rescue from the Victorian Country Fire Authority.

He said he’s ‘very glad no-one got killed’ in the valley, although others in the greater East Gippsland area weren’t so lucky. 

Pictured: Dairy farmer Craig Calvert spent 13 hours fighting a fire threatening his property at Sarsfield in East Gippsland

Pictured: Dairy farmer Craig Calvert spent 13 hours fighting a fire threatening his property at Sarsfield in East Gippsland 

One person is confirmed dead and 28 people are still missing after fires tore through East Gippsland ahead of New Year’s Eve on Monday.

The mayor of East Gippsland Shire, Councillor John White told the Age he’s concerned about the welfare of those missing.

‘Are we going to see them walking up the road towards us? I don’t know,’ he said.

‘That’s a real worry, because that’s potentially people’s lives. You can put up another house, you can build new fences but you can’t bring people back.’ 

Source: Daily Mail

DCHA offers $1,000 scholarship

The Dairy Calf and Heifer Association (DCHA) is seeking applicants for its scholarship program. Through this program, DCHA invests in the dairy industry’s future by offering financial support to students focused on careers in agriculture.

“Education is the backbone to fostering a successful and sustainable dairy industry,” says T.J. McClure, DCHA board president. “Today’s students are tomorrow’s producers, veterinarians, advisers and consultants. We are proud to offer a $1,000 scholarship to a deserving student who plans to shape the future of the calf and heifer segment of the dairy industry.”

The annual DCHA scholarship is awarded to a student currently enrolled in an agriculture-related program at an accredited college or university. Applicants must have completed at least one year of post high school education. An individual may only receive the scholarship once.

To apply for the scholarship, applicants must:

  • Be a member of DCHA; or the son, daughter or legal dependent of a DCHA member
  • Have completed at least one year of post high school education
  • Be an enrolled student in good standing at an accredited college or university
  • Be enrolled in a field of agriculture (e.g., dairy science, animal science, veterinary science, agricultural technical program, ag communications) or in a course of study with relevance to agriculture; preference is given to dairy calf/heifer-related fields

Go to: https://calfandheifer.org/scholarship for more information and to apply.

Applications must be received by end of business day, February 20, 2020. E-mail completed applications to jodee@calfandheifer.org.

The 2020 DCHA scholarship recipient will be recognized during DCHA’s Annual Conference, April 7-9, at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wis. The conference, themed “Shaping the Future,” will include producer panels, presentations and breakout sessions on cutting-edge topics, tours and networking opportunities.

Last year’s conference drew more than 400 attendees, including dairy calf and heifer raisers from 33 states and eight countries.

For more information or to join DCHA, visit www.calfandheifer.org, call (855) 400-DCHA (3242) or e-mail info@calfandheifer.org.

The Dairy Calf and Heifer Association was founded in 1996 based on the mission to help dairy producers, calf managers and those professionally focused on the growth and management of dairy calves and heifers. With a national membership of producers, allied industries and research leaders, DCHA seeks to provide the industry’s standards for profitability, performance and leadership, serving as a catalyst to help members improve the vitality and viability of their individual efforts and that of their business.

Brown Swiss Youth Heifer Program accepting applications for 2020

Youth looking for support to purchase their first Brown Swiss should consider applying for the Nelson McCammon Youth Heifer Program offered by the Wisconsin Brown Swiss Association. The organization is accepting applications between now and February 7, 2020.

“The Nelson McCammon Youth Heifer Program helps youth interested in working with dairy cattle gain hands-on experience with high-quality Registered Brown Swiss, explains committee chairperson Josh Hushon. “By working with Brown Swiss through this program, our hope is that they will learn to appreciate the many outstanding qualities the Brown Swiss breed offers as the well as the camaraderie of those who own them.”

Award recipients will receive a grant for 50% (up to a $1,000 total) towards the purchase price of a Registered Brown Swiss female of any age. The program is intended to run for two years with the applicants being between the ages of 9 and 18 for cows and 9 to19 for heifers as of January 1, 2020. Applicants must be residents of Wisconsin and become members of the Wisconsin Junior and the National Junior Brown Swiss Associations.

Since the project started in 2013, 20 youth have purchased Registered Brown Swiss heifers thanks to the generosity of long-time Brown Swiss breeder and youth supporter Nelson McCammon, who generously donated the funding for the program via his estate when he passed. Mr. McCammon was a mentor to many, and a past winner of the Klussendorf Trophy.

Winners will be presented at the Wisconsin Brown Swiss Annual Meeting, March 7, 2020, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Appleton, WI.

Applications and more information about this and other programs can be found at the Wisconsin Brown Swiss Association website at www.wibrownswiss.com or by contacting Josh Hushon at josh2632@yahoo.com or 920-342-0611.

The Legacy of KHW Regiment Apple-Red-ET

It is with great regret we share that KHW Regiment Apple-Red-ET passes. (May 3, 2004 – January 2, 2020) 

Excellent-96 4E DOM 28*
4-01 2x 365d 35,750 4.7 1682 3.7 1314
9-01 2x 365d 36,750 4.3 1582 3.3 1211
Lifetime: 240,640 4.7 11394 3.6

Her accomplishments could fill a book, but a few of the highlights include:
• Grand Champion International Red & White Show 2011
• Unanimous All-American Junior Two-Year-Old 2006
• All-American Red & White 125,000 lb. Cow 2013
• All-American Red & White Aged Cow 2011
• World Champion Red & White Cow 2010 & 2014
• Reserve Grand Champion International Red & White Show 2013
• Reserve Grand Champion Royal Winter Fair Red & White Show 2009
• Premier Breeder International Red & White Show 2017 & 2019

Her influence will live on.  It is worth celebrating the incredible career of a Red & White Holstein, who has bucked every trend the industry has to offer  Apple clicked with almost every sire she was joined to.

Since red color is popular throughout the dairy world, we can likely expect to see Apple’s influence expand exponentially as her genomically tested sons get purchased by AI and get used. The polish on this Apple family is likely just beginning. For example, in Australia Bluechip Holsteins and their partners have had sale topping Apple daughters and granddaughters. (Read more:  Dean and Dianna Malcolm: Gobsmacked in Australia and Dean and Dianna Malcolm: Forward in Five Gears!) Dean Malcolm of Bluechip provides his perspective “She‘s not just red, she’s cherry red. She’s out of a Durham, she transmits rear udders, she’s from an amazing family and she has the numbers.”  Dean goes on “Everyone who bought into the Apple family is enjoying the ride because their owners / managers, in the USA, are doing such a super job. It’s proof that if you buy good families from good cow men who continue to market, a lot of the work is already done for everyone”.

Francisco Rodriguez of Colganados in Columbia/USA reports how emotional his parents where when they watched Apple-Red’s accomplishments at Expo.  They could not believe they have genetics from this great cow.  Rodriguez own another clone to Apple, KHW Regiment Apple A1-Red-ETN (Read more: Francisco Rodriguez: Passion with a Purpose). That has produced Apple’s daughter by Redburst Miss Apple Snapple-RED who has been become a house hold name for her own accomplishments in the show ring. (Read more: KHW Regiment Apple-Red – Beauty, performance, and even more record accomplishments)

Mike Deaver shares in our feature article, KHW Regiment Apple-Red-ET – Everything and more, “We started off with her first flushes to well-proven bulls out of great cow families like Talent, Stormatic and Redliner to see if she was going to be a brood cow. Then we went to Goldwyn – because he was the breed’s greatest bull – and we used the best Goldwyn son at the time, Destry. Every bull worked.

“We didn’t flush her every two weeks to get as many embryos as we could. She had breaks. We’d do two to three flushes for show-age calves and then we’d give her a break.”

One of Apple’s daughters that Mike bought outright is Holstein International’s 2019 Red Impact Cow of the Year (and the sixth member of the Altitude family to achieve the honour in the 12 years the competition has been running), Ms Delicious Apple-Red EX94-2E.

She is also the dam to show specialist Mr D Apple Diamondback *RC at Select Sires and full sister to Absolute-Red and Big Apple-Red.

“Delicious Apple is probably the most proportionate, balanced cow I’ve ever owned. And, when Diamondback was born that’s exactly what he was. He grew at exactly the same rate with everything. His belly came down, as his legs got longer; his shoulder came up, and his neck stayed long. He didn’t shorten in the rump or sway in the back. He’s the best calf I’ve ever had born.”

Her ability to cross credit to the genomics market, and the family’s super production records and great components, hasn’t hurt her either.

Many people are putting the genes of this cherry red Apple into their herds and for good reason. The Apples are appealing to the eye, have productivity in the milk pail and are mothers of progeny with great potential. The Apple family are an investor’s dream – already proving that they are capable of bushels of success.

Australian dairy farmer on NSW south coast shares before and after photos of farm

A dairy farmer on the south coast of New South Wales has shared shocking before and after pictures of his farm after it was razed by fire in just 10 minutes. 

Robert Miller from the town of Milton, about an hour north of Bateman’s Bay, raced to save his herd of 1,000 cattle as fire closed in on his farm on New Year’s Day. 

‘It hit the farm at 1pm and was all over by 1.10pm, it came through very fast. It was ferocious, it was catastrophic.’ Mr Miller told The Land

A dairy farmer on the south coast of New South Wales has shared shocking before and after pictures of his farm after it was razed by fire in just 10 minutes

Robert Miller from the town of Milton, about an hour north of Bateman's Bay, raced to save his herd of 1,000 cattle as fire closed in on his farm on New Year's Day

Robert Miller from the town of Milton, about an hour north of Bateman’s Bay, raced to save his herd of 1,000 cattle as fire closed in on his farm on New Year’s Day 

‘We had done all the preparation we could have, we had the equipment and water in place but we lost power, so we had to use generators to power everything.’ 

He led his cattle onto a concrete area where they stood under sprinklers for the duration of the fire passing through. 

About half of Mr Millers 322 hectare farm was destroyed in the blaze. 

The town of Milton is at the middle of the Currowan bushfire which has merged with two other smaller fires to stretch 100km from Bateman’s Bay to Nowra on the NSW south coast. 

Access to electricity and fuel in the town has been affected forcing Mr Miller to dump milk because he can’t power his dairy. 

He has also being buying a semi-trailer of hay bales each day to feed his herd due to drought conditions but trucks are now unable to make their deliveries and the bales he already has have been mostly burnt. 

The herd is now under threat from starvation and further fires with temperatures expected to rise into the 40s on Saturday. 

More than 100 blazes are currently burning across New South Wales. 

The massive Green Wattle Creek and Gospers Mountain fires have been downgraded to advice alert level while the Currowan blaze remains at Watch and Act alert. 

An Australian Navy ship the HMAS Choule was deployed to the coast off the Victorian border town of Mallacoota on Thursday after residents were forced to seek shelter on a beach. 

More than 2,000 firefighters are working to contain bushfires across the state. 

An after picture of Mr Millers farm after fire raced through the property destroying more than 160 hectares in less than 10 minutes

An after picture of Mr Millers farm after fire raced through the property destroying more than 160 hectares in less than 10 minutes.

Source: dailymail.co.uk

Desperate Australian dairy farmer who fought fires for 13 hours begs PM for help

A dairy farmer who fought horrific 500m fireballs from his family’s property has made a desperate plea to Prime Minister Scott Morrison for help.

Craig Calvert spent 13 hours on Monday and Tuesday fighting off an inferno to save his family at Wiseleigh, Victoria – and faces another deadly battle on Saturday.

Mr Calvert asked Prime Minister Scott Morrison to learn how to manage the bush properly to prevent devastating bushfires.

‘Mr Morrison, please, throw your gloves on, come down here and see me,’ Mr Calvert told Sunrise.

‘I’ve got an extensive network who can help with knowledge of the bush, how the Australian environment is actually meant to run. It doesn’t run on paperwork.’ 

PLEA FOR HELP 

Dairy Farmer Craig Culvert says  Bruthen in East Gippsland needs:

* A Telstra generator at Bruthen so people don’t lose communications 

* Supplies – especially feed for livestock

* Generators for the dairies 

* Electricians

* Help with potential health issues caused by hundreds of dead cattle 

* Better land management to prevent catastrophic fires in future 

He pleaded with the Prime Minister to ‘step up’ and not to let people die in the future, or to let history repeat itself.  

The exhausted Country Fire Authority volunteer made his impassioned plea after fighting off a massive bushfire with his father, Peter, at his dairy farm for 13 hours over Monday night and Tuesday.

He had barely seven hours of sleep in the week since the nightmare began, and told Daily Mail Australia he couldn’t remember what day it was now or when the fire had been.

As he fought the inferno he watched horrific fireballs from 50m to 500m wide jump across a gully.

The first wave of fire ignited eucalyptus gas in the air above the trees, burning like white flame in mid-air without touching the canopy.

Smoke billows on Thursdsay from East Gippsland, Victoria. The regions dairy farms have been devastated. Farmer Craig Culvert made a desperate plea to the Prime Minister to change land management practices to save lives and prevent future catastrophe

Craig Culvert at his family's dairy farm at Wiseleigh near the Tambo River, Victoria, on Friday. Mr Culvert has had just seven hours sleep since Monday as he tries to battle the flames with more severe fire weather and 40C temperatures forecast for Saturday

Craig Culvert at his family’s dairy farm at Wiseleigh near the Tambo River, Victoria, on Friday. Mr Culvert has had just seven hours sleep since Monday as he tries to battle the flames with more severe fire weather and 40C temperatures forecast for Saturday

Eucalyptus trees contain highly flammable eucalyptus oil which evaporates into the air on hot days providing a gas as explosive as jet fuel.  

The second round came through the canopy – then the ground fire came. 

Mr Calvert had to retreat three or four times as he fought the horror blaze and saved his farm.

He said every home in a valley called Dirty Hollow had been destroyed and that it was lucky nobody was killed.

Mr Calvert, a sixth generation farmer whose family have been in the area for 169 years, said the bush had been managed properly for 40,000 years by Aboriginal people who didn’t even have modern equipment.

Ominous smoke filled the sky as the fire approached the dairy on Monday evening

Ominous smoke filled the sky as the fire approached the dairy on Monday evening

‘If they can do it, we can do it … help us out,’ he said on Friday in his passionate plea to Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

Mr Calvert said loggers warned of disaster 40 years ago when the bush was ‘locked up’ and wasn’t properly prepared for fire risk.

The exhausted volunteer and his family were preparing on Friday for a repeat of dangerous fire conditions with 40C temperatures forecast for Saturday.

 Mr Calvert’s wife Celeste headed in to the nearby town of Bruthen to stock up on supplies for Craig to defend the property on Saturday. 

Celeste and the couple’s four daughters are now safely in the town of Bairnsdale. 

The view towards Craig Calvert's grandmother's house. Craig and the CFA volunteers saved both the houses by fighting the unimaginable fires over Monday night and Tuesday

The view towards Craig Calvert’s grandmother’s house. Craig and the CFA volunteers saved both the houses by fighting the unimaginable fires over Monday night and Tuesday

Craig with his wife Celeste (far right) and their four daughters. Celeste and the girls are now safe with family in nearby Bairnsdale ahead of fire danger conditions forecast for Saturday

Craig with his wife Celeste (far right) and their four daughters. Celeste and the girls are now safe with family in nearby Bairnsdale ahead of fire danger conditions forecast for Saturday

Peter Calvert (pictured) fought the fires alongside his son Craig on Monday night. The Calvert family have been dairy farming in the area for 169 years over six generations

Peter Calvert (pictured) fought the fires alongside his son Craig on Monday night. The Calvert family have been dairy farming in the area for 169 years over six generations

Mr Calvert said the area urgently needs more supplies especially feed for livestock.

He implored Telstra to bring a generator to the nearby town of Bruthen so the surrounding areas don’t lose communications during Saturday’s forecast fire weather.

Daily Mail Australia has asked Telstra for a response.  

Climate protesters halted hazard reduction burns which reduce dangerous fuel loads in the Mossiface area near Mr Culvert’s dairy farm in September. 

Gippsland’s Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Beth Roberts told local radio station TRFM that Forest Fire Management Victoria crews had been planning to ignite controlled burns on September 4.

Celeste Calvert took this picture from down her driveway on Monday night

Celeste Calvert took this picture from down her driveway on Monday night 

Exploding fireballs leaped over the ridge and gully to race towards the Calvert's home. The air exploded above the trees first with white flame burning up the flammable eucalyptus gas before the canopy fire struck

Exploding fireballs leaped over the ridge and gully to race towards the Calvert’s home. The air exploded above the trees first with white flame burning up the flammable eucalyptus gas before the canopy fire struck

They were stopped by protesters who entered the bush and refused to leave.

‘These burns are strategic asset protection burns, intended to protect human life, property and community assets from summer bushfires,’ Dr Roberts told TRFM.  

Victoria Police were called to the incident, Dr Roberts said.  

The catastrophic bushfires that have razed eastern Australia since October are not without precedent. 

The inferno continued to turn East Gippsland to ash and smoke on Thursday

The inferno continued to turn East Gippsland to ash and smoke on Thursday

Almost four million hectares were burnt to the ground in the summer of 2003 causing devastating loss of livestock, bushland, and property across five states, with the Australian Capital Territory worst affected.

A Parliamentary inquiry into the fires heard there had been grossly inadequate hazard reduction burning for too long, and that local knowledge and experience was being ignored by bureaucrats.

The inquiry made 59 recommendations many of which focused on hazard reduction and co-ordination between states and agencies to improve land management and prevention strategies. 

Source: dailymail.co.uk

Vermont AG announces legal action against state’s largest dairy operation

The state of Vermont is moving forward with a lawsuit against the state’s largest dairy operation for violating agricultural laws and water quality regulations.

“No farm is above the law,” said Vermont Attorney General T.J. Donovan Thursday, standing in front of the Franklin County Courthouse, where his office filed a seven-count complaint against Pleasant Valley Farms of Berkshire, LLC. “There’s no point in having rules and regulations if they’re not going to be followed and enforced.”

The business run by Mark and Amanda St. Pierre owns farms in several Franklin county towns including the Lumbra Farm in Berkshire. The lawsuit claims the farm has a new 104-thousand square-foot barn and 10-million gallon manure pit — and no permits for any of it.

Exactly when the alleged violations occurred is unclear. The state says because there was no permit filed, they don’t know when the work began but they think it happened in 2016 or 2017.

“When you go behind our back and build these massive structures without permits, without allowing the Agency of Agriculture to come up and do their job, we’re going to seek to hold you accountable,” Donovan said.

The lawsuit was a victory for activists like Michael Colby, who said without them, the alleged violations would not have been reported.

“That’s how it started — with citizens with open eyes,” Colby said. “I filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the state asking for information about the permit and I was informed there was no permit and that the state had no idea it was even being built… it’s very satisfying as citizen activists to see the state step in, take the information we provided them, and try to see some justice.”

No one was available for comment when WCAX stopped by Pleasant Valley Farms main office Thursday. Reached on the phone, their lawyer said they did apply for permits — in January 2018 as a medium size farm — and were denied by the Agency of Agriculture, which said they met the criteria of a large farm. The farm disputes that categorization and has appealed to environmental court. Their lawyer says that’s still pending but that she believes they handled permits properly. She also says the state has never said that anything they did actually harmed the environment at the Lumbra Farm site.

The state says they tried to resolve this out of court first without success and that if the farm had consulted the Agency of Agriculture before starting construction it all could have been avoided.

“Instead, they chose to build this massive barn and massive manure pit without letting anyone know,” Donovan said.

Attorney General T.J. Donovan Thursday announced his office has filed a lawsuit against Pleasant Valley Farms of Berkshire, LLC and its owners Mark and Amanda St. Pierre. The state claims the company expanded an existing barn and manure pit at their Lumbra Farm in Berkshire without obtaining the necessary state permits.

The barn is alleged to have increased in size from around 13,000 square feet to approximately 104,000 square feet and the new manure pit has a capacity of 10 million gallons.

“We have a long and proud tradition of farming, agriculture, and environmental stewardship in Vermont,” Donovan said in a statement. “We need to continue to support our farmers while also protecting water quality and the environment by applying these rules across
the board.”

Donovan says the farm and its owners also violated the state’s water quality rules by skirting its requirements as a Large Farm Operation, LFO, under the state’s Required Agricultural Practices law.

The seven-count complaint was filed Thursday in Franklin Superior Court.

An attorney for the farm says there is an unresolved legal dispute about which permit the farm needs. 

Source: wcax.com

Virginia dairy farms continue to decline at the end of 2019

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services said over the past five years the number of dairy farmers in the commonwealth has declined throughout the end of 2019.

Paulson said many of those dairy farmers switched to farming chickens or beef and are not out of the farming business for good.

In 2019, there were 571 dairy farms in Virginia and at the start of 2019, that number fell to 514. VDACS said as of Dec 31. there were 469 farms dropping more than 100 in two years

Eric Paulson of the Virginia State Dairymen’s Association said the cost of milk is one of the reasons why this is happening across the country.

He said as the price of milk gets lower for consumers it puts more of a strain on farmers, who have to constantly milk and feed their cows.

“We don’t set the price, dairy farmers don’t set the price they ship the milk and they found out what they get paid for the following month,” Paulson said. “So it’s very difficult when the market dictates prices like that and you have no way to increase it.”

He said some farms have gone into agri-tourism or selling other dairy products like cheeses, yogurt and ice cream to offset some of the cost.

“We have some farms that are doing things like selling other products, a lot of farms are diversifying,” Paulson said. “You might have them up also doing some poultry or another crop as well to kind of diversify their operation.”

Paulson said in the later half of 2019, the price of milk began to go up again and expects it to continue to rise throughout 2020. Although he said the damage that has been done will take years of rising prices for farmers to recover.

Source: whsv.com

Holstein Canada Announces Finalists for the 2019 Cow of the Year Competition

Since 1995, Holstein Canada’s annual Cow of the Year competition aims to recognize elite Canadian cows that have had an impact both domestically and internationally and have been enjoyed by Canadian producers. These animals could be a bull dam; a brood cow; a high or consistent milk producer; a show winner; a high-index animal; or a top cow in another country.

Holstein Canada has announced the finalists for the 2019 Cow of the Year!

View the finalists and their biographies HERE

Cast your vote in four easy ways:

  1. Mail your postage-paid ballot (in the Jan/Feb edition of InfoHolstein): 20 Corporate Place P.O. Box 610 Brantford, ON N3T 5R4
  2. Fax your ballot to 519-756-5878
  3. E-mail your vote to cowoftheyear@holstein.ca
  4. Online-vote from your confidential online web account: To vote online, simply log into you member profile and click on the Cow of the Year banner at the top of the page. (*Each prefix or client ID is entitled to one vote.)

Visit Holstein Canada’s website for more information.

Application Period Open for 73rd Alice in Dairyland

The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) is seeking a communications professional eager to help Wisconsin residents make meaningful connections with Wisconsin agriculture as the 73rd Alice in Dairyland. Individuals interested in applying may submit applications through Monday, Feb. 3, 2020. Application materials and information are available on DATCP’s website at https://datcp.wi.gov/Pages/Growing_WI/BecomingAlice.aspx.

“Applying to serve as Alice in Dairyland is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made,” said 72nd Alice in Dairyland Abigail Martin. “Being Wisconsin’s agricultural ambassador has allowed me to share the story of our state’s $104.8 billion agriculture industry with many diverse audiences across the state. It’s also broadened my own view of agriculture and deepened my appreciation for the industry.”

In this highly visible, fast-paced position, Alice in Dairyland cultivates relationships with television, radio, and print media outlets; writes and delivers speeches at events large and small; and leverages social media to promote Wisconsin agriculture.

Minimum Qualifications

Applicants should have:

  • Considerable knowledge or work experience with Wisconsin agriculture
  • At least three years of experience, education or training in communications, marketing or public relations
  • Public speaking experience, and
  • A willingness to attend an extensive number of work-related events on evenings and weekends.

Applicants must be female Wisconsin residents who are 21 years old.

Position Information

The one-year, full-time contractual position starts June 1, 2020. The position is headquartered in Madison and travels extensively throughout the state. The salary is $45,000 annually and includes holiday, vacation, and sick leave as well as use of a vehicle for official business. Reimbursement is provided for health insurance as well as travel expenses for official purposes.

Selection Process

Interested individuals should submit an application form, cover letter, resume, three professional references, and a summary of their qualifications by 4:30 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 3, 2020. Application materials are available at https://datcp.wi.gov/Pages/Growing_WI/BecomingAlice.aspx

In contrast to previous years, preliminary interviews will be held on a Saturday (Feb. 22, 2020) and may be conducted via Skype or in person. Following these preliminary interviews, up to six top candidates will be required to attend a two-day program briefing and press announcement on March 13-14. Top candidates must also attend the three-day final interview process May 14-16 in Walworth County, which culminates in the selection of the 73rd Alice in Dairyland.

Questions regarding the position or application process can be directed to Debbie Vine (Gegare) at 608-224-5116 or Debbie.Gegare@wisconsin.gov.

 

Australian farmer Steve Shipton was forced to shoot his cattle that were burned by bushfires

A NSW dairy-turned-beef farmer’s story of having to shoot his cattle has made world headlines in the wake of the Australian bushfire crisis.

In an area where four people perished in a ferocious fire, Steve Shipton’s eyes were burning as he tried to save his home.

“I thought I was a goner,” the Coolagolite cattle farmer told AAP.

“The heat was horrendous. My eyes … I couldn’t see 20 feet last night.”

The Countegany/Dampier State Forest blaze raced through Cobargo and Coolagolite on Tuesday morning on its way to burning an area twice the size of Canberra.

Steve Shipton (left) talks to a local vet in Coolagolite, NSW. Picture: AAP
Steve Shipton (left) talks to a local vet in Coolagolite, NSW. Picture: AAP

Three men and an unidentified person died out of a population of about 1050.

Mr Shipton thought he was fine to protect his home after getting his wife and kids inside and his stock out to a dirt clearing.

“It all happened so quick,” the 46-year-old said, soot still covering his face.

“I stayed out. I suppose I shouldn’t have but it just happened so fast.

Steve Shipton inspects the burns on a calf in his paddock after a bushfire in Coolagolite, NSW. Picture: AAP
Steve Shipton inspects the burns on a calf in his paddock after a bushfire in Coolagolite, NSW. Picture: AAP

“It’s just unbelievable. The ferocity and how quick … That’s what shocked me and that’s why I thought we were in a good situation to survive,” he said.

He estimates he lost about a tenth of his 250-odd head of cattle.

His story has made world headlines on the UK’s Metro and Mail Online.

Most of the cattle had been where Mr Shipton thought would be safe – on dirt with a feed rack – but the animals “obviously panicked”.

Steve Shipton (centre) is consoled by fellow farmers Bernie Smith (left) and Peter Mercieca in Coolagolite, NSW. Picture: AAP
Steve Shipton (centre) is consoled by fellow farmers Bernie Smith (left) and Peter Mercieca in Coolagolite, NSW. Picture: AAP

A vet on Wednesday was assessing which would survive and which needed to be euthanised.

“There are some in there badly scorched,” Mr Shipton said.

“He’ll know better than me what can survive and what can’t because I’ve never been through this scenario.

Steve Shipton prepares to shoot an injured calf in his paddock after a bushfire in Coolagolite, NSW. Picture: AAP
Steve Shipton prepares to shoot an injured calf in his paddock after a bushfire in Coolagolite, NSW. Picture: AAP

“You don’t want them to suffer.” The forefront spared Cobargo artist Sally Wilson’s shop but embers took hold of the historic property as she and her partner Christopher Lee protected their home and animals a short walk away.

As things calmed down at home, Mr Lee walked over to the shop to find it alight.

“The firefighters said it had started 20 minutes before,” she told AAP, standing beside the rubble.

Steve Shipton prepares to shoot an injured calf in his paddock after a bushfire in Coolagolite, NSW. Picture: AAP
Steve Shipton prepares to shoot an injured calf in his paddock after a bushfire in Coolagolite, NSW. Picture: AAP

“He stood out the front and watched it burn.”

The couple moved to Cobargo just 18 months ago after deciding it was “a really safe pocket” with a vibrant, caring community.

“I’ve been visiting here for years and it was like nothing could get you,” she said.

Local farmer Greg Tett said the community was a very tight-knit one, where people “dove in” to help those whose chips were down.

“That’s the way it’s been for a long time and why I think a lot of people like to come here,” he told AAP.

He suspects he’ll have to entirely de-stock after 95 per cent of his 110-acre property was scorched.

“At least we’re still alive,” his wife Karen Tett said.

Mr Tett woke about 1am on Tuesday to a phone call from his daughter warning about the approaching fire.

His brother spent five hours building a fire break in vain.

“When it came down the mountain, we had spot fires everywhere,” Mr Tett said. He said his family will fight on.

“We’ve got to.”

Source: Daily Telegraph

 

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