News

New Zealand milk production up 2.4 percent from previous season

Milk production for the New Zealand dairy season just ended was up by more than 2.4 percent on the season prior.

Figures from the Dairy Companies Association of New Zealand shows national production from 1 June 2018 to 30 May 2019 lifted to 1,883,559 tonnes of milk solids.

An analyst from from the dairy insight group of NZX, Robert Gibson, said it was up about 1.5 percent compared to the five-year average.

“The last season was predominantly a strong spring, that’s helped to offset any dry conditions that we had in the second half of the season… so [there were] very very good weather conditions at the start of the season right up until December which sort of fed through into milk production, even to the start of January,” Mr Gibson said.

Mr Gibson said the so far outlook for the 2019/2020 season was looking positive.

He said May was typically the peak month, where farmers sent any surplus cows to be culled, but this season farmers appeared to be retaining more cows for milking.

“Figures from the New Zealand Meat Board show that cull cow numbers are back by about 30,000 head on the previous year… so with more cows, or a slight lift in cows being retained, for the coming season we’d expect similar to slightly up milk production going into next season,” Mr Gibson said.

 

Source: Stuff

A Minnesota robotic dairy survives amid trade war

On a dairy farm in rural Eyota, Minnesota, a day-old calf wobbled up to a robotic feeding stall. An RFID reader scanned the tag clipped to the calf’s ear and measured the amount of milk allotted to the baby as she drank from the feeder.

In just a generation or two, farmers have embraced high-tech advances in their fields and barns.

But those advances led to a sharp increase in production in the midst of a trade war with two of the U.S.’s largest dairy export markets. That has left many American farms awash with excess product with no one to sell it to. But the economy of scale has kept some larger dairy producers afloat.

“There’s been a crazy amount of technology added to farming,” said Dana Allen-Tully, a manager and operator of the multigenerational Gar-Lin Dairy Farms Inc. “We can access our cow files on our phone, I can look up a specific cow on my phone, or I can see what the feeders are doing on my phone.”

The automatic feeders allow calves to have multiple, smaller meals throughout the day to mirror the feeding schedule they would have if they were out in the pasture with their moms.

Each calf is fitted with an ear tag shortly after it’s born that has an identification code, similar to a Social Security number, that can be scanned by the automatic feeder when the baby approaches the milk distribution stall, according to the La Crosse Tribune.

Information associated with that code, such as how much a calf should eat and when it should eat, is transmitted to the feeder and governs the flow of milk through the dispenser.

Data from robotic feeders is fed back to a handheld device, where supervisors can monitor how much the calves drink and how fast.

“Calf feeding is by far one of the hardest jobs on the farm because it’s so physical. You’re dealing with a calf that weighs 100 pounds and you’ve got to lift it and work with it, so this was built to improve the environment for the employees too,” Allen-Tully said.

Gar-Lin is an efficient operation. It pasteurizes waste milk to feed to calves, instead of dumping the milk and purchasing milk replacement, and roughly half a mile away Gar-Lin employees harvest hay to feed their herd.

They grow their own to reduce the cost of feed and they use manure from their cows to fertilize their fields.

Of the 4,500 acres they farm, 3,100 of that goes to feed the animals.

They’ve become partially independent of external suppliers to keep their cost down and to keep in line with federal EPA regulations that apply to dairy farms of 700 head or more. They have an on-site nutritionist who analyzes the feed and balances rations to optimize milk production as well as cow health and performance.

“Our cows eat a way better diet than I do,” Allen-Tully said, laughing.

Gar-Lin Dairy was purchased by Allen-Tully’s parents from her grandparents in the mid-1970s. At that time, they were milking about 40 cows.

Allen-Tully’s parents decided to expand the dairy, and by the time she graduated from high school, they were milking 300 cows. When Allen-Tully returned to the farm after college, her parents had doubled their herd to 600 cows.

In 2006 the herd expanded to 1,100, and from there it’s grown to the current size of 2,000 cows and 45 employees. Allen-Tully attributed the growth as necessary to make a profit in an industry with stagnant milk prices but inflation in equipment and supply costs.

“Consolidation in the dairy industry is happening way faster than I expected it to,” she said. “I don’t think we’ll be considered a ‘big farm’ for very long, I think we’ll be average.”

She noted that the cost structure of products in the market, such as deeper discounts on supplies for producers who buy in larger bulk orders, is driving smaller farmers out of business and prompting mid-size farms to expand to survive.

“I can buy a gallon of teat dip so much cheaper than someone who uses only a gallon, because I buy 275 gallons at a time and they’re going to buy 15,” she said. “I think it’s sad.”

Gar-Lin fills three 6,000-gallon tanks to be shipped per day to manufacturing and distribution facilities.

The dairy’s semi-robotic carousel in the parlor can milk up to 50 cows at a time and 270 cows in an hour. The machine monitors and records the amount of milk each animal produces, as each cow walks on and off the carousel on their own.

They send their milk to Land O’Lakes, which sells dairy products internationally through partnerships with major food manufacturers across the globe.

“I think trade has affected us, but the issues that they’re trying to fix should have been fixed a long time ago,” Allen-Tully said.

She hopes Congress will pass the trade agreement with Mexico and Canada, noting that Mexico received more dairy products from the United States than any other trading partner before the trade war.

“We’ve got a lot more product in the country than what we would have had before” and that additional product within the U.S. leads to the surplus that helped to drive the cost of milk down, she said.

“The ag economy is in a tough spot, so hopefully we’ll see some price recovery.”

In La Crosse, 60 miles southeast of the Gar-Lin Dairy, Dona Goede, Brad Sirianni and Aimee Schomburg, farm business management instructors at Western Technical College, sat around a table in a conference room looking over years’ worth of milk production numbers.

Each has experience with the fluctuation of the ag and dairy market. Sirianni farms 170 acres of land in Trempealeau County to supply feed to dairy farmers; Schomburg milks 130 cows and farms roughly 220 acres to feed her herd; Goede’s in-laws are getting ready to expand their organic farm into the organic dairy industry as a way to use leftover hay supplies.

Goede said her in-laws crunched the numbers and decided to invest in the kind of cattle that will produce milk high in butterfat, proteins or components that lend themselves well to cheese production.

“You need to supply the market with what it wants, and we’re in Wisconsin so it’s cheese. By jumping in on organic and the components with high butterfat, every time we do the cash flows, it works for that operation,” Goede said. “The farms that we have struggling right now from what I see are the ones that aren’t willing to give the market what they want.”

Schomburg nodded in agreement, as her newborn daughter cooed in the background.

“As long as you’re going to be in the industry, you have to be willing to be flexible,” Schomburg said. She and her husband purchased their farm just last year from family members, but she questioned whether that was the right decision for her family.

During the past couple of years, the base milk price has not met the cost required by most farmers to produce, leading them to lose money. Net incomes have either declined or are negative.

“That means people are leaving unpaid bills out there,” Sirianni said.

Both interest rates and debt rates are increasing across the ag and dairy industry. A large number of farms can’t afford to buy new equipment, so they try to repair the equipment they have but can’t afford to pay their repair bills, Goede said. The crisis has spread throughout other aspects of the rural economy.

“(Equipment dealers and repair shops), feed dealers, fertilizer, dairy supply,” Goede said. “The ag economy is such a huge driving force for our rural communities, without farms you’re going to see a lot of the businesses disappear.

“That’s what a lot of our farms are facing, how do you pay off a 22% interest feed bill, when you still have to feed the cows. You still have to buy more feed but now you’re paying 20-22% more on a feed bill because you can’t pay it every month.”

Despite the numbers and the crippled market, Goede, Schomburg and Sirianni remain hopeful. Like Allen-Tully, they see evidence of a government that’s trying to fix things that should have been fixed a long time ago in regard to fair prices in international trade agreements.

“I think we’re going through a painful fix,” Sirianni said.

U.S. Rep. Ron Kind, D-La Crosse, unveiled his Dairy Action Plan Friday in his La Crosse office.

The plan, which he’ll introduce to the 116th Congress, includes components that will combat farm consolidation, boost conservation and agriculture innovation and support beginning farmers and ranchers, among other measures.

Kind said he is working on almost a daily basis with President Donald Trump’s trade team to try to end the trade war and reopen international markets.

In the early hours of June 8, President Trump sent out a tweet that read, “MEXICO HAS AGREED TO IMMEDIATELY BEGIN BUYING LARGE QUANTITIES OF AGRICULTURAL PRODUCT FROM OUR GREAT PATRIOT FARMERS!”

But Kind and his colleagues on Capitol Hill have been left in the dark regarding what the new deal with Mexico will entail.

“We have gotten zero information about any details of this secret deal with Mexico, other than the president not moving forward on another threatened round of tariffs,” Kind said. “I think it’s important that we do get back to a level of trust and reconciliation because Mexico and Canada, they’re two of our largest trade partners.”

The lack of information regarding the deal mentioned by President Trump on Twitter prompted Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Wisconsin, to pen an open letter to the president demanding details of this deal to be released to the public.

In her letter Baldwin wrote, “(Wisconsin farmers) need the full details of the agreement in order to inform the many decisions they must make that affect their livelihood and business.”

Source: startribune.com

Dairy Cows Fuel Up on Coffee Creamer Each Day at This Iowa Farm

The cows at Cinnamon Ridge Dairy Farm run on coffee creamer to produce some of the best milk in the nation, according to the owner.

Dairy Task Force 2.0 Adopts Final Report

The Wisconsin Dairy Task Force 2.0 voted unanimously to adopt their final report at a meeting in Madison on Friday, June 21, 2019. This report includes the 51 recommendations approved by the group at previous meetings.

“I am pleased to accept the final report of the Dairy Task Force 2.0 as their recommendations for the long-term success of Wisconsin’s dairy industry,” said Governor Tony Evers. “While the group’s work has completed, it is now time for all of us to consider how these recommendations could be implemented to maintain Wisconsin’s world leadership in dairy.”

The Dairy Task Force 2.0 Chair Dr. Mark Stephenson compiled the 51-page report. In addition to the recommendations, the report provides information about milk production, milk price volatility, and changing farm structure across the country.

“For nearly a year, Dairy Task Force 2.0 members have come together to roll up their sleeves and find consensus on recommendations,” added Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection Secretary-designee Brad Pfaff. “We at DATCP are already finding ways to implement these recommendations. Our state’s dairy farmers are facing a triple whammy of low prices, uncertain international trade markets, and wet weather. Enacting policies that assist them in both the short and long term is of paramount importance.”

After more than 45 in-person meetings and teleconferences, the final report concludes the work of the Dairy Task Force 2.0. Recommendations highlight the need for additional investments in research, increased innovation, expanded market development, and strengthened connections across the industry.

“Our universities can play a role in helping Wisconsin’s critical dairy industry innovate and identify opportunities to succeed in an especially challenging environment,” said University of Wisconsin System President Dr. Ray Cross. “Dairy Task Force 2.0 was diligent in its work, and we are hopeful that the recommendations can improve the lives and work of farmers throughout our state.”

DATCP and UW System established the Dairy Task Force 2.0 in June 2018 to enable stakeholders to come together to make recommendations on actions needed to maintain a viable and profitable dairy industry in our state. The 31 members of the Dairy Task Force 2.0 included farmers, processors, and representatives of allied organizations.

To access the Dairy Task Force 2.0 final report, visit dairytaskforce.wi.gov.

 

‘I no longer have neighbours with cattle’ – one of Dublin’s last dairy farmers on urban pressures

The Mexicans built a wall and so will Padraig Ó Scanaill, i-f that is what it takes to secure one of the last remaining dairy farms in North Co Dublin.

 

Source: Independent.ie

Government of Canada supports two dairy processing businesses in Ontario

The dairy processing sector plays a vital role in Canada’s economy, producing good, high-quality and nutritious products for Canadians across the country.

Today, the Member of Parliament for London North Centre, Peter Fragiskatos, announced on behalf of the Honorable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, an investment of over $2 million under the Dairy Processing Investment Fund for two dairy processors in St. Marys.

The investment of $1,933,060 for Saputo Dairy Products Canada G.P.) will help to expand their production area and add new cold storage capacity. The project consists of the purchase and installation of equipment in order to increase production capacity, while improving overall efficiency. It is expected that the project will allow Shepherd Gourmet Dairy Inc. to increase the use of Canadian milk and to create approximately eight new jobs.

For Stonetown Artisan Cheese Ltd., the investment of $149,238 will allow them to purchase and install new equipment to increase cutting, processing, storage and ageing capacity. This will allow them to expand their operations and broaden their product offerings. The project is expected to increase use of Canadian milk and result in the creation of two new full-time and two new part-time jobs.

Quotes

“This investment will help these local businesses expand and create opportunities for growth and economic development in St. Marys. The government is pleased to work together with industry to ensure our Canadian dairy processors have the support needed to provide top-quality products, while creating well-paying jobs for Canadians.”
– Peter Fragiskatos, Member of Parliament for London North Centre

“Saputo is very pleased with this announcement. This grant provided under Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Dairy Processing Investment Fund will go towards improved operational efficiency at our plant and assist in meeting future demand for our high quality specialty dairy products.”
– Sandy Vassiadis, Vice President, Communications and Corporate Responsibility, Saputo Inc.

“This program supports growth and protects jobs created by small businesses like ours. Stonetown Artisan Cheese is a family owned on-farm cheese processing plant, using whole milk from our own cows, located outside St. Marys ON. The increased productivity resulting from this funding will enable us to respond to the growing demand and meet our consumers expectations.”
– Hans Weber, Owner Stonetown Artisan Cheese

Quick facts

  • In 2001, Shepherd Gourmet Dairy Inc. began operations as a dairy processing company in St. Marys, manufacturing high quality products including specialty cheeses and yogurts. On June 19, 2018, Shepherd Gourmet Dairy Inc. was purchased by Saputo, a leading cheese manufacturer and fluid milk and cream processor in Canada.
  • Stonetown Artisan Cheese Ltd. is an on-farm artisanal cheesemaking company from St. Marys that has been in business since 2015.
  • Canada has more than 478 dairy processors that generate $14.3 billion in sales and create over 42,000 jobs.
  • The Dairy Processing Investment Fund, valued at $100 million, is designed to help dairy processors modernize their operations, improving productivity and competitiveness.
  • Canada’s dairy sector is also supported by the associated Dairy Farm Investment Program. To date, 1,900 dairy projects have been approved for funding support valued at $129 million, in a wide array of projects from small investments in cow comfort equipment to large ones for automated milking systems.

 

SourceCision Canada

China Mengniu Dairy, Coca-Cola sign Olympic deal to 2032

China Mengniu Dairy and Coca-Cola have signed a multi-year global Olympic deal as joint beverages and dairy sponsors starting from 2021 until 2032, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said on Monday.

While some reports put a $3 billion price tag on the agreement, there were no financial details available and both Coca-Cola CEO James Quincey and Mengniu Chief Executive Jeffrey Lu refused to comment on the size of the deal.

Coca-Cola’s previous deal ran to 2020 and the new agreement with China’s top milk products manufacturer, which will span six Olympic Games, makes it the longest Olympic sponsor, the U.S. drinks maker having first supported the Games in 1928.

“It is a substantial arrangement. It is a profound partnership,” said Quincey.

“With Mengniu, we saw an opportunity to expand the dairy aspect of the beverage category.

“We will be activating our own individual marketing plans, but we are pleased to be a joint partner with a well-respected dairy company that is well known to us in China.”

The two companies are already working together in some aspects of their business in China.

The announcement is a major boost for the IOC, strengthening its financial future as interest in the world’s biggest multi-sports event has waned in the last few years.

Mengniu is the latest Asian company to join as top sponsors after Bridgestone, Toyota and Alibaba in recent years and reflects the region’s growing influence of global business.

“This long-term agreement is another demonstration of the relevance and stability of the Olympic Games in these times of uncertainty,” IOC President Thomas Bach said.

His organization will later award the 2026 Winter Olympics to either Milan or Stockholm. Four other cities had pulled out of the bidding, fearful of the Games’ cost and size.

Beijing will host the 2022 Olympics, while the Summer Games of 2024 will be staged in Paris. Los Angeles has been awarded the 2028 Olympics.

Mengniu’s Lu said the agreement was a key part of their global vision.

The Coca-Cola Company President and CEO James Quincey, IOC President Thomas Bach and Mengniu Dairy Executive Director and CEO Minfang Lu attend a news conference before the 134th session of International Olympic Committee (IOC) during which the host city for the 2026 Winter Olympic Games will be decided in Lausanne, Switzerland, June 24, 2019. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

“This historic joint partnership deal, together with our global expansion plans, will help Mengniu promote our long-held values around quality and safety,” Lu added.

“This is a vital step in our international strategy, and we are honored to have the opportunity to build the positive reputation of Chinese food and beverage brands among consumers globally.”

Source:reuters.com

Murray Goulburn settles class action for $42m

Former milk processing co-operative Murray Goulburn has settled a class action for $42 million.

Known as the Endeavor River class action, it was launched in August last year on behalf of more than 1,300 investors who had purchased units in the Murray Goulburn Unit Trust between May 29, 2015 and April 27, 2016.

These units traded on the Australian Securities Exchange.

Legal group Slater and Gordon Practice Group leader Emma Pelka-Caven would not disclose the amount claimants were seeking, but she said it “wasn’t significantly higher” than the $42 million that they received.

“What we were claiming on behalf of our unit holders was the Murray Goulburn had misled the market, both in statements it made when it listed and its Product Disclosure Statement and over the next few months,” she said.

“Essentially what we were concerned about is that Murray Goulburn had not had reasonable grounds for the forecast it had given for its FY16 financial year.”

Murray Goulburn did not admit liability as part of the settlement and the settlement would also be subject to Federal Court approval.

The settlement of this class action left one pending class action against Murray Goulburn.

Known as the Webster Class Action, a statement from Murray Goulburn said court ordered mediation would occur on or before November 8, 2019 with a trial listed to start on February 5 next year.

Murray Goulburn units lifted 13.5 per cent to 0.335 cents in Monday morning ASX trading.

‘A commercial decision’

A statement from Murray Goulburn said the $42 million settlement included interest and costs with about 80 per cent of this funded by insurance.

“MG will contribute the remaining portion of the settlement amount and intends to recover this amount from an insurer third party,” the statement said.

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MG said the settlement was a “commercial decision made in the best interests of MG Shareholders and Unitholders in the MG Unit Trust”.

Murray Goulburn was asked if insurance could cover a settlement or costs of the second class action.

It said it would not comment on arrangements with insurers as they were confidential.

It also said any further distribution to shareholders and unitholders will be considered by the Board on a periodic basis.

MG reported to the ASX on April 15 that it held $272 million — or 49 cents per share or unit — for the 554,665,638 shares and units on issue.

MG was sold to Canadian dairy giant Saputo in May last year for $1.31 billion.

This came after Murray Goulburn dropped the farmgate milk price it paid suppliers in April 2016, a move followed by Fonterra Australia.

This triggered what was known as the ‘dairy crisis’ and resulted in a number of dairy farmers switching milk companies or exiting in the industry.

As part of that transaction between Murray Goulburn and Saputo, shareholders and unit holders received 80 cents for each share they owned.

Many dairy farmer suppliers had paid a minimum of $1 a share to secure shares when supplying the co-operative.

Money was retained, following the transaction, so MG could pay a farmgate milk price set-up and a farmer supplier ‘retention payment’ when the sale was concluded.

At the time, MG flagged it would also retain a further $195 million for any potential exposure under the retained litigation that MG retained responsibility for, costs associated with this litigation and operational costs.

Source: abc.net.au

Milk Markets Continue Last Weeks Steady Climb in Chicago Monday

On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange Monday milk futures were mostly up and cash dairy prices were mixed.  Class III milk was flat in nearby months but continued a steady climb for late 2019. June and July were unchanged at $16.30 and $17.08/cwt, but August gained 9 cents to $17.44 as did September to finish at $17.64/cwt. October- December gained 1-4 cents and they average $17.41/cwt. January – March of 2020 gained 3-4 cents to $16.63/cwt. Class IV milk was also unchanged for June and July, finished at $16.86 in June and $17.10 for July. Second half average for Class IV milk is at $17.36/cwt.

The CME spot product trade showed some gains on limited volumes.  Dry whey was up $.01 at $.3525 cents per pound. Two sales were recorded at $.3425 and $.3575. Forty-pound blocks were up $.0150 at $1.84 per pound. Ten sales were recorded from $1.8250 to $1.8425. Barrels were down $.0175 to $1.72 per pound. Two sales were recorded at $1.71 and $1.7375. Grade AA Butter was up $.0125 at $2.4025 per pound. Three sales were recorded at $2.38 and $2.4025. Nonfat dry milk was down $.0050 at $1.04 per pound. One sale was recorded at that price.

Grain and feed prices rebounded Monday after some softening at the end of last week. July corn gained 4 ½ cents to $4.46 ¾, July Soybeans gained 6 ¼ cents to $9.09 even, and July soybean meal gained $2 to $317.60/ton.

Trouble-shooting Milk Fever and Downer Cow Problems

In the time period shortly before calving, large amounts of calcium are removed from the blood and are utilized in the mammary gland to be part of the colostrum. Calcium in colostrum may be eight to ten times greater than in the blood supply. The rapid drop and the decreased mass of the calcium pool prior to parturition, and the failure of calcium absorption to increase fast enough after the onset of lactation, can predispose animals to milk fever or hypocalcemia.

There are other probable causes that have been associated with inducing milk fever. They include excessive bone formation due to elevated levels of gonadal hormones and rations containing excessive dietary levels of cations, especially potassium. In addition, other metabolic disorders can lead to clinical and subclinical hypocalcemia (i.e. ruminal stasis, displaced abomasum, retained placenta, prolapsed uterus, metritis, and ketosis). Table 1 lists additional factors and situations.

Table 1. Conditions associated with milk fever.
Factors Situations
Low calcium intake, especially for dry cows (< 0.40% in total ration dry matter (TRDM)) Heavy corn silage feeding; high moisture corn feeding; inadequate supplementation; low grain intake (dry cows); low forage – high grain feeding.
Low phosphorus intake (< 0.28% TRDM) Inadequate supplementation; high forage – low grain (i.e. pasturing dry cows).
Excessive calcium intake (between 0.70% and 1.00% TRDM) High legume intake by dry cows; over supplementation with calcium.
Excessive phosphorus intake (> 0.40% TRDM) Over supplementation; excessive grain feeding.
Excessive vitamin D intake (> 100,000 units per head daily) Over supplementation can lead to calcification of tissues and result in heart failure.
Low magnesium intake (< 0.20% in TRDM) Failure to balance low magnesium forages, i.e. corn silage, grasses, and small grains.
High potassium intake as it affects anion-cation balance (> 1.2% in TDRM) Forages high in potassium content – over 1.5% on a dry matter basis.
Reduced mineral absorption; rumen pH over 6.8 to 7.2; higher incidence with increasing age (lack of vitamin D, alimentary tract stasis, lack of motility, constipation) High legume ration; high pH water over 8.5; under 3 to 5 pounds of grain intake; underfeeding forage or effective fiber; excessive protein intake.
Selenium or vitamin E deficiency (< 0.10 ppm) (< 250 units per head daily) White muscle disease; lack of supplementation.
Toxemia Coliform mastitis, other toxin-forming organisms; lower gastrointestinal tract stasis; reproductive tract infections.
Nerve or muscle damage Injury at calving; damage from going down or lying on limbs for a prolonged time period.

Symptoms and Problem Situations

Stages of milk fever

Milk fever is divided into three stages based on clinical signs. Stage I milk fever often goes unobserved because of its short duration (< 1 hour). Signs observed during this stage include loss of appetite, excitability, nervousness, hypersensitivity, weakness, weight shifting, and shuffling of the hind feet.

The clinical signs of stage II milk fever can last from 1 to 12 hours. The affected animal may turn its head into its flank or may extend its head. The animal appears dull and listless; she has cold ears and a dry nose; she exhibits incoordination when walking; and muscles trembling and quivering are evident. Other signs observed during stage II are an inactive digestive tract and constipation. A decrease in body temperature is common, usually ranging from 96°F to 100°F. The heart rate will be rapid exceeding 100 beats per minute.

Stage III milk fever is characterized by the animal’s inability to stand and a progressive loss of consciousness leading to a coma. Heart sounds become nearly inaudible and the heart rate increases to 120 beats per minute or more. Cows in stage III will not survive for more than a few hours without treatment.

Problem situations

Milk fever is considered a herd problem when over 10% to 15% of the cows are afflicted on an annual basis. The higher value may apply to herds where many cows are freshening that have a history of getting milk fever, i.e. older cows being more susceptible.

A problem situation can be when a high proportion of cows in a sizable group of freshenings is affected. An example of this would be when five out of the last eight freshening cows are diagnosed with milk fever.

Forms of Milk Fever

Typical milk fever

An acute form affecting cows usually within a few days after parturition, but it sometimes occurs in late lactation or the dry period. Typical milk fevers respond well to treatment.

Refractory or atypical milk fever

An acute form with little or no response to treatment. The cow may remain alert, eat, and milk but cannot regain her feet. She may become a creeping downer cow with flexed pasterns and posterior paralysis. Rupture of the large muscle or group of muscles in one or both hind legs may complicate the problem. Similar fracture or dislocation of a hind joint may have occurred when the cow went down initially or in struggling to rise.

Tremors or sub-acute

Cows are easily excited with muscle twitching and tremors occurring. Usually, several cows are involved. Many of these animals may be in late lactation, dry, or recently fresh. Often, there is a magnesium deficiency involved as well.

Blood Parameters

The most notable changes occurring in the blood are a decrease in blood calcium and blood phosphorus levels and an increase in blood magnesium levels. In cases of milk fever complicated by a lack of magnesium, the blood magnesium level may remain normal or even be depressed. Table 2 illustrates the blood mineral levels for animals in various stages of milk fever.

Table 2. Blood serum concentration of dairy cows in various metabolic states.
State Blood serum (mg/dl)
Calcium
Blood serum (mg/dl)
Phosphorus
Blood serum (mg/dl)
Magnesium
Sources: Compiled from The Ruminant Animal: Digestive Physiology and Nutrition. Prentice Hall, Englewood, NJ. 1988. Chapter 24, Metabolic problems related to nutrition. pg. 494; The Dairy Reference Manual, Northeast Agricultural Engineering Service, Ithaca, NY. 1995. Chapter 6, pg. 167; and J. Dairy Sci. 71:3302-3309, 1988.
aMilk fever complicated by low magnesium may result in serum magnesium ranging from 1.4 to 2.0 mg/dl.
Normal lactating cow 8.4 to 10.2 4.6 to 7.4 1.9 to 2.6
Normal a parturition 6.8 to 8.6 3.2 to 5.5 2.5 to 3.5
Milk fever, Stage I 4.9 to 7.5 1.0 to 3.8 2.5 to 3.9a
Milk fever, Stage II 4.2 to 6.8 0.6 to 3.0 2.3 to 3.9a
Milk fever, Stage III 3.5 to 5.7 0.6 to 2.6 2.5 to 4.1a

Some cases of milk fever are complicated by a toxemia from infection in the udder, reproductive tract, or digestive system. This type of toxemia from infection may be reflected in the blood with a high packed cell volume (PCV), depressed white blood cell (WBC), and/or elevated blood urea nitrogen (BUN). It is recommended to include the WBC differential as this can indicate stress or infection.

Other blood parameters that can denote toxemia are sodium, potassium, chloride, and fibrinogen. Fibrinogen levels can signal that inflammation and infection is present. If toxemia is a factor and is not overcome, treatment for milk fever may not be successful.

For downer cow problems, consider creatine phosphokinase (CPK) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) in the blood test. CPK normally ranges between 105 to 409 IU/L. A value greater than 1000 IU/L indicates severe muscle damage from being down. AST levels over 200 IU/L flag a guarded prognosis and levels over 500 IU/L can indicate severe muscle damage.

Control Suggestions

  1. Make certain that mineral tests on forages are available. Minerals to test should include calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, sodium, sulfur, and chloride.
  2. Consult with a nutritionist to evaluate the present ration program and the feeding management practices. Include all pertinent information including incidence and severity of milk fever cases.
  3. Collect a blood sample from the animal before administering treatment for hypocalcemia. If the animal does not respond to treatment, submit blood sample for blood counts and clinical chemistry. Include in the profile serum minerals, PCV, WBC with differential, and BUN. Some situations may warrant checking CPK and AST.
  4. Pending results of feed and blood testing and ration evaluations:
    1. Check feeding management practices. For example: Are dry cows consuming free-choice forages or mineral premixes? Is there selective consumption by cows for forages?
    2. Discontinue any free-choice mineral feeding. Force feed all minerals.
    3. Check that dry cows are receiving supplemental vitamin D at 15,000 to 25,000 units per head daily and that on average, milk cows are getting about 30,000 units per head daily. A maximum intake of 50,000 units per head daily should be used for all cows.
    4. Check dry cow rations, especially during the last two to four weeks prior to calving.
      • Limit grain intake to a maximum of about 0.5% to 0.8% of body weight.
      • Limit legume or mixed mainly legume forage to 30% to 50% of forage dry matter intake.
      • Limit corn silage to 50% of the forage dry matter intake.
    5. Remove moldy or spoiled forage or feed from the ration, especially those testing positive for mycotoxins.
  5. Use plain calcium borogluconate for the first treatment to minimize refractory cases.
  6. As a last resort, use one of the following:
    1. Feed–mixed with the grain or other quickly eaten feed–100 grams (3.5 oz) of ammonium chloride per head daily beginning not less than two days before and continuing at least two days after freshening. This is particularly appropriate if high rumen pH is suspected. Check urine pH promptly. Most cows should have a urine pH of 7.0-8.6.
    2. Inject intramuscularly 10 million units of vitamin D3 in a water-soluble, highly crystalline form within 24 to 48 hours of expected freshening. Do not repeat dose for at least 10 days if cow doesn’t freshen. Use three million units in a repeat dose.
    3. Before giving up on downer cows, give a drench of two pounds of Epsom salts in one gallon of water. This will sometimes remove toxins in the lower gastrointestinal tract and enable cows to stand within two to four hours.
    4. Administer high calcium boluses (about 75 grams of calcium carbonate) as soon as possible after calving and within eight hours of freshening; or administer calcium paste paying close attention to the manufacturers recommendations and directions.

Dietary Cation — Anion Balance

Another method of preventing and controlling milk fever is balancing dry cow rations for anions (negatively charged molecules) and cations (positively charged molecules). Sodium and potassium are the cations and chloride and sulfur are the anions of interest in formulating anionic diets. The dietary cation-anion balance (DCAB) equation most often used to determine milliequivalents per 100 grams of dry matter is: mEq/100g = mEq (Na + K) – mEq (Cl + S). Based on current research, the range that achieves the lowest incidence of milk fever is a DCAB of -10 to -15 mEq/100g dry matter (DM) or -100 to -150 mEq/kilogram.

Achieving a DCAB of -10 to -15 mEq/100g requires adjustments in the major mineral levels that are quite different than what is normally programmed for regular close-up dry cow rations (no anionic salts). Table 3 lists recommended mineral levels for both regular and anionic rations.

Table 3. Guide to mineral composition (dry matter basis) for close-up dry cows.
Mineral Regular Anionica
aDCAB may be calculated from the percent element in diet dry matter. The equation is as follows: mEq/100g DM = [ (%Na ÷ 0.0230) + (%K ÷ 0.0390) ] – [ (%Cl ÷ 0.0355) + (%S ÷ 0.0160) ]; Example: DCAB mEq/100g DM = [ (0.10 ÷ 0.0230) + (0.80 ÷ 0.0390) ] – [ (0.70 ÷ 0.0355) + (0.35 ÷ 0.0160) ] = 4.35 + 20.5 – 19.7 + 21.9 = 24.9 – 41.6 = -16.7.
b
Based on continuing research and field experience, calcium levels from 1.5% to 2.00% and magnesium levels of. 40% to. 45% may be warranted.
cA sulfur level of 0.45% may be tolerated for short periods of time (three to four weeks).
Calcium 0.45 to 0.55 1.40 to 1.60b
Phosphorus 0.30 to 0.35 0.35 to 0.40
Magnesium 0.22 to 0.24 0.28 to 0.32b
Potassium 0.80 to 1.00 0.80 to 1.00
Sulfur 0.17 to 0.19 0.35 to 0.40c
Chlorine 0.20 to 0.24 0.70 to 0.80
Sodium 0.10 to 0.12 0.10 to 0.12

Balancing rations for anions affects the cow’s acid-base status, raising the amount of calcium available in the blood. Urine acidity is affected by these changes in the cow’s acid-base status, Table 4. Checking urine pH can help producers and veterinarians monitor the effectiveness of an anionic ration.

Table 4. Urine pH predicts calcium status of cows at calving.
Ration DCAB Pre-fresh cow
Urine pH
Pre-fresh cow
Acid-base status
Fresh cow
Calcium status
Source: Davidson J. et al. Hoard’s Dairyman, pp. 634. 1995.
Positive (> 0 mEq/100g) 8.0 to 7.0 Alkalosis Low blood calcium
Negative (< 0 mEq/100g) 6.5 to 5.5 Mild metabolic acidosis Normal blood calcium
Negative (< 0 mEq/100g) Below 5.5 Kidney overload, crisis Normal blood calcium

Feeding a combination of different anionic salts is necessary for achieving the desired DCAB, Table 5. The most commonly fed salts are ammonium sulfate, calcium sulfate, magnesium sulfate, ammonium chloride, calcium chloride, and magnesium chloride. Pay special attention to the degree of hydration of specific salts in formulating rations as well as their costs and availability.

Table 5. Chemical composition of commonly available anionic macromineral salts.
Mineral salt Chemical formula Percent as-fed
N
Percent as-fed
Ca
Percent as-fed
Mg
Percent as-fed
S
Percent as-fed
Cl
DM
%
Ammonium sulfate (NH4)2SO4 21.2 24.3 100.0
Calcium sulfate CaSO4*2H2O 23.3 18.6 79.1
Magnesium sulfate MgSO4*7H2O 9.9 13.0 48.8
Ammonium chloride NH4Cl 26.2 63.3 100.0
Calcium chloride CaCl2*H2O 27.3 48.2 75.5
Magnesium chloride MgCl2*6H2O 12.0 34.9 46.8

Before incorporating DCAB into a dry cow program, there are several factors to consider. Some of the anionic salts are very unpalatable which can depress intakes significantly in conventional feeding programs. In particular, ammonium salts may result in more intake and palatability problems, especially when a silage based ration is not being fed. Reduced dry matter intakes as a result of feeding anionic salts can lead to the development of other metabolic disorders.

Much of the success with anionic salts has been in herds feeding a total mixed ration. The use of an anionic diet is appropriate when high calcium forages are fed at relatively high levels during the close- up dry period. Animals should receive the anionic diet at least three to four weeks prior to expected calving.

Forages presumed to be good dry cow forages might actually contain high potassium levels that interfere with DCAB. When the potassium level in the total ration dry matter exceeds 150 grams (or > 1.2%), it is difficult to add the proper amounts of anionic salts to meet the ideal DCAB range. Re-evaluating the ration and forages may be necessary if more than 0.65 to 0.75 pounds of anionic salts are needed.

If DCAB is to be implemented in a herd, sodium, potassium, chloride, and sulfur must be included in the forage analyses. Buffers must not be used in anionic salt rations because they will counter the effect of DCAB.

Source: extension.psu.edu

Floating Farm in Rotterdam is now home to 32 cows

A floating dairy farm has opened in Rotterdam, showing how food production can become less vulnerable to climate change.Floating Farm was designed by Peter van Wingerden and Minke van Wingerden of Beladon, a company that specialises in waterborne architecture, and local architecture studio Goldsmith.

It is now home to 32 cows, producing dairy products that will soon be on sale in Lidl stores all over the city.

Floating Farm in Rotterdam
The farm is currently installed in Merwehaven. Photo is by Ruben Dario Kleimeer

The project is designed for a future where rising sea levels mean that farmland is increasingly out of action due to flooding.

It aims to show a new way of bringing farming back into the city, with minimal impact on resources and the environment.

“We are seeing an ever-growing world population,” explained the Floating Farm team. “In 2050, it is expected that two to three billion people will have been added.”

Floating Farm in Rotterdam
The cows each have their own stalls, with rubber floors

“The available area of fertile agricultural land does not grow along with the world population. In fact, fertile land is becoming increasingly scarce,” they continued.

“Climate change shows that there is increasingly heavy rainfall and flooding of cities and farmland. So we will have to look at a climate adaptive system to continue feeding the city.”

Minimal impact on the environment

The structure was developed to follow circular design principles. It generates all of its own electricity from floating solar panels and provides fresh water through an integrated rainwater collection and purification system.

Floating Farm in Rotterdam
A milk robot allows cows to be milked as they choose

The cows are fed with grass from playing fields and golf courses in the city, along with waste food products like potato scraps, bran and brewers grains. Their manure is used to create a natural fertiliser.

The organisers claim that animal welfare is a big conern for them. The cows each have their own stalls, with rubber floors that are soft but supportive underfoot. They are also free to wander back onto dry land – a neighbouring field – when they want to stretch their legs.

Cows today are often on water, as many are shipped between countries. The company behind Floating Farm claims that Australia often exports as many as 800,000 cows a year, and the animals are often aboard large ships for weeks at a time.

“Compared to regular stables, this floating cow garden is a major leap forward,” they said.

“In particular the cow garden, the space per square metre, the firmness, softness and cleanliness of the floor and the plants, greenery in the cow garden. Then, of course, we examined the stability of the building with our engineers.”

Teaching people about sustainable farming

The team are keen to show how technology can be used to improve the whole farming process.

A milk robot allows cows to be milked as they choose, while a slurry robot clears away manure immediately after it is produced. There is also an automatic belt feeder that distributes food.

The building is deliberately as transparent as possible so that visitors can easily observe these processes. There are also education spaces on board, so groups can come and learn more about sustainable farming.

“To make the city dweller more aware of healthy food, we want to bring it close to the consumer,” added the team, “to make healthy food clear, insightful and attractive in a transparent and educational way.”

The Floating Farm is among a number of innovations coming out of Rotterdam, a city that is investing heavily in design and technology. Billed by architects as “the city of the future”, it is home to studios experimenting with robotic construction and wind power, as well as floating architecture.

Rising sea levels is a particular concern for the city’s creatives, as the Netherlands already suffers from frequent flooding.

It is hoped the Floating Farm will encourage more people to think about the possibilities offered by floating buildings. The farm is currently installed in Merwehaven – a port area that is set to become a new residential district for the city.

The farm is being managed by Albert Boersen, who is being described as the world’s first floating farmer.

If the project proves a success, the team will move forward with plans to expand the business with a floating chicken farm and a floating greenhouse, producing fresh fruit and vegetables for the city.

The project is funded by private investors, with support from a range of industry partners.

Source: dezeen.com

The Future of the Dairy Industry in Scotland

Must-attend events for Scottish dairy farmers in July

Scottish dairy farmers are being urged to attend meetings on the future of dairy farming in Scotland being held in early July.   

The must-attend meetings, being held in Kinross (3 July); Thainstone (3 July); Castle Douglas (4 July) and Renfrew (4 July) are in anticipation of the UK Government’s consultation on the regulation of contracts between dairy farmers and processors.

The consultation is likely to be the most significant for the industry since deregulation of the milk industry 25 years ago.

Government has acknowledged that there is a need to improve stability in the dairy supply chain by addressing bargaining power, contract terms such as exclusivity, trust and transparency.  

The seminars, which are open to all, will help inform farmers and other stakeholders of the potential for change in the dairy sector and will be led by well-informed experts from NFU Scotland, NFU England and Wales, AHDB and Scottish Government.

Speaking on the first day of the Royal Highland Show in Edinburgh (20 June), NFU Scotland Vice President Martin Kennedy said: “This is the start of the most important conversation with dairy farmers and other stakeholders in a quarter of a century.   

“UK farming unions have a strong desire to work with farmers, processors and retailers to develop the type of relationships which will drive fairness, efficiency and competitiveness in the UK dairy sector, making it fit for purpose for decades to come.

“The voluntary code on milk contracts, agreed in 2012, covering dairy contracts, has disappointingly fallen short of expectations and Government now sees a need for some form of statutory requirement to secure more equitable, progressive dairy contracts between farmer and processor.

“These seminars are the beginning of an ongoing discussion to agree what an effective milk contract should cover and how this is agreed.  I urge every dairy farmer in Scotland, where possible, to get involved and feed in their views.  It’s your dairy industry and it’s your future.”  

 

Source: NFU Scotland

Strong global fundamentals back $7.15 farm-gate price

Rabobank is holding its farm-gate milk price forecast of $7.15 for the 2019-20 season amid strong global market fundamentals.

In its latest quarterly global dairy report, the bank said those fundamentals had remained well-balanced through the first half of 2019, with stagnant milk supply growth, reduced stocks and price stability continuing to be the key themes permeating across the sector.

Milk production across the “big seven” exporters – the EU, United States, New Zealand, Australia, Uruguay, Argentina and Brazil – in 2019 was below the prior year, allowing markets to find support.

A sharp finish to the milk production seasons in both New Zealand and Australia, coupled with robust China imports, supported Oceania-origin dairy product prices, Rabobank dairy analyst Emma Higgins said.

The outlook through the second half of 2019 pointed to an ongoing challenge to “turn the milk production tap on” across key exporting regions.

“Milk production across the export engine has stuttered along in the first half of 2019 with negative growth of 0.3% and this has created tension in the global market.

“However, the milk supply tap is slowly being turned on, and in quarter three we expect to see the return of milk supply growth for the big seven exporters, with this led by the northern hemisphere producers.”

Importantly for New Zealand producers, the bank’s forecast suggested less milk volumes would be available from the southern hemisphere export countries over the second half of 2019.

On the demand side, the report said the landscape in import markets remained a “mixed bag”.

Chinese import appetite was stronger than expected through the first four months of 2019 and some buyers were likely to have adequate coverage.

Chinese demand was expected to remain firm but lower than in the first half of 2019 which might “place a ceiling” on price increases, Ms Higgins said.

The US economy was heading for a sizeable slowdown in 2020 while the Eurozone economy had been underperforming since 2018, she said.

Trade tensions and the worsening African swine fever outbreak shaped as key watch factors in the second half of 2019, the report said.

 

Source: Otago Daily Times

Flower-Brook Atwood Gee-ET Earns Grand Champion of 2019 Minnesota State Holstein Show

Flower-Brook Atwood Gee
Grand Champion, Best Udder of Show, Champion Bred & Owned

The 2019 Minnesota State Show was held at the Meeker County Fairgrounds in Litchfield, Minn., on Saturday, June 15, 2019. Yan Jacobs of Quebec was the official judge for the show. He placed 86 heifers and 57 cows for a total of 143 head. The show was hosted by the Meeker County Holstein Association and Meeker County Dairy Barn.

Junior Champion was awarded to the first place Junior Yearling Heifer, Stranshome A Affection-Red (Addiction-P-Red), exhibited by Joseph, Zach, Jerome, & Darian Stransky. Reserve Junior Champion was awarded to the first place Fall Heifer Calf, Budjon-Vail Wild Child-ET (Doc) exhibited Calvin and Chandler Bening. Receiving Honorable Mention honors for Junior Champion was the first place Summer Yearling Heifer Calf, Sunkist Crush Acallie-ET (Crush), exhibited by Malcolm & Sarah Beck & Pat Heeren.

Judge Jacobs selected the first place Senior Three-Year Old, MS St-Jacob Dempsey Again (Dempsey), exhibited by Joseph, Zach, Jerome, & Darian Stransky as the Intermediate Champion. Reserve Intermediate Champion honors were awarded to the second place Senior Three-Year Old, Sunkist Airlift Lexus Livley (Airlift), exhibited by Benjamin Donnay. Honorable Mention Intermediate Champion honors were awarded to the first place Junior Two-Year Old, Pine-Shelter Cerea Dormn-ET (Doorman), exhibited by Molly Alberts.

Senior Champion was awarded to the first place Four-Year Old, Flower-brook Atwood Gee-ET (Atwood), exhibited by Andrew D. Stuewe. Reserve Senior Champion was presented to the second place Four-Year OldMacland HF Yoder Rachel-ET (Yoder) exhibited by James W. Mcfarland. Earning Honorable Mention honors for Senior Champion was the first place Aged Cow, Lida-Acres Atwood Annie (Atwood), exhibited by Olivia D. & Madilyn B. Johnson.

For Grand Champion, Judge Jacobs selected the Senior Champion, Flower-Brook Atwood Gee-ET (Atwood), exhibited by Andrew D. Stuewe. Flower-Brook Atwood Gee-ET also was honored as the Grand Champion Bred and Owned and Best Udder. Reserve Grand Champion was awarded to the Intermediate Champion, MS St-Jacob Dempsey Again (Dempsey) exhibited by Joseph, Zach, Jerome, & Darian Stransky.Honorable Mention Grand Champion went to Macland HF Yoder Rachel-ET (Yoder) exhibited by James W. Mcfarland. Macland HF Yoder Rachel-ET also received Reserve Champion Bred and Owned.

The Premier Breeder and Exhibitor of the 2019 Minnesota State Holstein Show was awarded to Lida Acres, Pelican Rapids, Minn.

View below for the complete list of placings and awards. The 2020 Minnesota State Holstein Show will be hosted by the Sibley County Holstein Club from June 16-19.

 

JUNIOR HEIFER CALF (3):

  1. DEMMERS ABSOLUTE PRIDE (ABSOLUTE-RED), DEMMER FARMS, (1ST B&O)
  2. MAT-AR-DOR AWESOME ROSY-RED (AWESOME), JACOB AND AIDEN TIMMER AND ANDREW AND AVERY ZYLSTRA, (2ND B&O)
  3. SILVER-CREST WDBROOK DISCO (WINDBROOK), WILLIAM MUELLER (3RD B&O)

WINTER HEIFER CALF (18):

  1. BUDJON-ABBOTT ATLANTA-ET (CRUSH), CALVIN AND CHANDLER BENING
  2. JU-LAR SIDEKICK BLACKBERRY (SIDEKICK), LINDAHL FARMS LLC, (1ST B&O)
  3. DJLPUREPRIDE ICEBRKR-RED-ET (JACOT-RED), DYLLON AND CONNER LOHMANN
  4. ROLLINGRIVER MOONLIGHT-RC (ADVENT-RED), KAMRIE A MAUER & BENTLEY J BRASCH, (2ND B&O)
  5. DEMMERS DEMPSEY PAIGE (DEMPSEY), DEMMER FARMS, (3RD B&O)
  6. DEMMERS DEFIANT GINGER-RED (DEFIANT), DEMMER FARMS, (4TH B&O)
  7. FLOWER-BROOK SOLOMON GLEN (SOLOMON), ADDISON, ELLA, & BRIEA JAEGER
  8. KRESS-HILL SUNRISE-RED-ET (JORDY-RED), ARNIE, ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES
  9. LLR LA DOLCE VITA (DOORMAN), TIM WOESTE, RICKY & ELIZABETH HALL & LUKE OLSON
  10. LONE-OAK-ACRES S RANITA-ET (SOLOMON), JOHN J. SAUBER, (5TH B&O)
  11. HEATHERSTONE CRYSTAL-ET (KENOSHA), SETH TANDE
  12. BUDJON-ABOTT C ANNAHEIM-ET (CRUSH), CALVIN AND CHANDLER BENING
  13. SIEMERS SRG APPLE 30689-ET (SURGE), ARNIE, ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES
  14. AL-SHAR SOLOMON MICKIE (SOLOMON), WALKER L ZOELLNER, (6TH B&O)
  15. BARBER-RD CHEESE CURD (ATMOSPHERE), CHANDLER KURTH
  16. DESTHAVEN SID SONATA (SID), STEVEN, DEBRA, DANIELLE & PATRICK HEUER, (7TH B&O)
  17. SILVER-CREST BROKAW DICE (BROKAW), WILLIAM MUELLER
  18. ST-YLISH SHOTTLE NOELLE (SHOTTLE), JULIETTE ALBRECHT-LEASED TO REGAN LISTUL, (8TH B&O)

FALL HEIFER CALF (16):

  1. BUDJON-VAIL WILD CHILD-ET (DOC), CALVIN AND CHANDLER BENING
  2. BUDJON-CRAVE STELLA (AVALANCHE), TAYLOR JERDE
  3. MAT-AR-DOR AVAL RENE-RED-ET (AVALANCHE), JACOB AND AIDEN TIMMER AND ANDREW ZYLSTRA, (1ST B&O)
  4. DEMMERS DEFIANT MISTY-RED (DEFIANT), DEMMER FARMS, (2ND B&O)
  5. DEMMERS DIAMONDBACK GADGET (DIAMONDBACK), DEMMER FARMS, (3RD B&O)
  6. MANANNAH CAMERO (CORVETTE), SLOAN STAHNKE
  7. FLOWER-BROOK SOLOMN GERMAIN (SOLOMON), ANDREW D. STUEWE, (4TH B&O)
  8. MAT-AR-DOR SOLOMON ANNABELL (SOLOMON), JACOB AND AIDEN TIMMER AND ANDREW AND AVERY ZYLSTRA, (5TH B&O)
  9. KINGSWAY GOLDWYN GEM (GOLDWYN), BENJAMIN DONNAY
  10. SHEEKNOLL AVAL ADRIANA – ET (AVALANCHE), SHEEKNOLL FARMS, (6TH B&O)
  11. VANDERHAM CRUSH GOLDRUSH (CRUSH), VANDERHAM DAIRY, (7TH B&O)
  12. SUNKIST AMMO MERCEDES-RED (AMMO-P), ARNIE, ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES
  13. SUNKIST DREAM ADDICT-RED (ADDICTION-P-RED), ARNIE, ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES
  14. FLASHY-M-W-D FLYIN SOLO (SOLOMON), FLASHY HOLSTEINS & MILKY-WAY DAIRY, (8TH B&O)
  15. FLOWER-BROOK D.BACK COLETTE (DIAMONDBACK), KILEY LICKFELT
  16. DESTHAVEN REDLINER PERDY (REDLINER-RED), STEVEN, DEBRA, DANIELLE & PATRICK HEUER, (9TH B&O)

 

SUMMER YEARLING HEIFER (13):

  1. SUNKIST CRUSH ACALLIE-ET (CRUSH), MALCOLM & SARAH BECK, PAT HEEREN
  2. T-SPRUCE DBACK 12237-RED-ET (DIAMONDBACK), ARNIE ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES, (1ST B&O)
  3. SILVER-CREST BROKAW CAMILLE (BROKAW), WILLIAM MUELLER (2ND B&O)
  4. STU-FELT AVALANCHE SKY-ET (AVALANCHE), KILEY LICKFELT
  5. ROLLINGRIVER-KM ALLI-CAT (SOLOMON), KAMRIE MAUER & BENTLEY BRASCH, (3RD B&O)
  6. MACLAND KDOC CIN CITY (DOC), ANNA K CULBERTSON, (4TH B&O)
  7. WILS-GOLD WONDERFUL SOLOMON (SOLOMON), ARNIE ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES
  8. FLOWER-BROOK DELORIS-RED-ET (DIAMONDBACK), ANDREW D. STUEWE, (5TH B&O)
  9. SHIR-MAN AMMO MALIBU- RED (AMMO-P), HAELY AND KAYLA LEIDING, (6TH B&O)
  10. THREESISTERS DESTINY CRUSH (CRUSH), SHELBY SWANSON, (7TH B&O)
  11. SHEEKNOLL GOLD-C ASHLEY-ET (GOLD CHIP), SHEEKNOLL FARMS, (8TH B&O)
  12. SHERONA-HILL RADISH (SOLOMON), JOHN MARCHAND & TAMMY WENDELL
  13. MAT-AR-DOR DBACK GALA-RED (DIAMONDBACK), JACOB AND AIDEN TIMMER AND ANDREW AND AVERY ZYLSTRA, (9TH B&O)

 

JUNIOR YEARLING HEIFER (12):

  1. STRANSHOME A AFFECTION-RED (ADDICTION-P-RED), JOSEPH, ZACH, JEROME, & DARIAN STRANSKY, (1ST B&O)
  2. MACLAND CARAMEL CRUSH (CRUSH), SCOTT R CULBERTSON, (2ND B&O)
  3. BUDJON-VAIL JORDY LOVEE-RED (JORDY-RED), RYAN LABER & SCOTT CULBERTSON
  4. JU-LAR GOLD CHIP PRIMROSE (GOLD CHIP), ETHAN AND ALEXA LINDAHL, (3RD B&O)
  5. SKYRIDG-BZ-CR JDY RACHEL-RED (JORDY-RED), NATALIE A., PAIGE L., & NEIL R. HAASE
  6. TJ-POLLEMA DMNBAK BROOKLYN (DIAMONDBACK), J SCHAEFER, G JACKSON, P&A WALDOCH
  7. FIER-VIEW SUNFLOWER-RED-TW (DIAMONDBACK), FIER-VIEW HOLSTEINS, (4TH B&O)
  8. MS FIER-EP D-BACK BELLA-ET (DIAMONDBACK), FIER-VIEW HOLSTEINS & RUSSELL & HEATHER THYEN, (5TH B&O)
  9. TJ-POLLEMA JACOT WINNI-RED (JACOT-RED), J SCHAEFER, G JACKSON & P&A WALDOCH
  10. MS CAN ADD CAMARO-RED-ET (ADDICTION-P-RED), SAUBER, KNUTSON, K&R HYOVALTI & B&C BUEHRING, (6TH B&O)
  11. DEMMERS LOTUS EMERALD (LOTUS), DEMMER FARMS, (7TH B&O)
  12. KURTHKINE WINDBROOK LULU-ET (WINDBROOK), LARKUN C. KURTH, (8TH B&O)

 

WINTER YEARLING HEIFER (12):

  1. KURTHHAVEN BAM BAM LOTUS (LOTUS), CHANDLER KURTH, (1ST B&O)
  2. HEATHERSTONE GLITTER-ET (DOORMAN), ARNIE, ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES
  3. MACLAND RACH ROULETTE-ET (CRUSH), CONNER AND DYLLON LOHMANN
  4. SHEEKNOLL DOORMAN ABBY-ET (DOORMAN), ROBERT, KELLY, ANDREW, KRISTA SHEEHAN, (2ND B&O)
  5. NEWALTA SOLOMON 10766 (SOLOMON), IAN VANDERWAL, (3RD B&O)
  6. TJ-POLLEMA AMMO EXPLOSION (AMMO-P), BROOKLYN AND BRIANNA HOLTZ
  7. KURTHKINE JACOT ELIANNA (JACOT-RED), LARKUN KURTH, (4TH B&O)
  8. MAT-AR-DOR SOLOMON STELLA (SOLOMON), JACOB AND AIDEN TIMMER AND ANDREW AND AVERY ZYLSTRA, (5TH B&O)
  9. FIER-VIEW DEFIANT SKYLA-RED (DEFIANT), FIER-VIEW HOLSTEINS, (6TH B&O)
  10. PRAIRIEHAVEN BEEMER KENNEDY (BEEMER), NATALIE A., PAIGE L., & NEIL R. HAASE
  11. MS ST-YLISH APPLECRSP DRMER (APPLE-CRISP), AARON ALBRECHT, (7TH B&O)
  12. LONE-OAK-ACRES S EDINA (SOLOMON), JOHN SAUBER, (8TH B&O)

FALL YEARLING HEIFER (11):

  1. FAIRMONT JACOBY ASH (JACOBY), LOREN AND LUKE OLSON
  2. SUNKIST MARIO KIARA (MARIO), BENJAMIN DONNAY, (1ST B&O)
  3. MS DESTHAVEN SIRWOOD TIA-ET (SIRWOOD), STEVEN, DEBRA, DANIELLE & PATRICK HEUER, (2ND B&O)
  4. KURTHHAVEN MACY LOTUS (LOTUS), CHANDLER KURTH, (3RD B&O)
  5. MS ALLISONS MCHAMMER ARIEL (MC HAMMER), ARNIE, ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES
  6. NEWALTA DOORMAN 9891 (DOORMAN ), IAN VANDER WAL, (4TH B&O)
  7. SCHILL-Q PRINCESS LEIA-RED (MAX-RED), MICHAEL & KAREN SCHILLER & KARLA SMIEJA, (5TH B&O)
  8. AL-SHAR DOOR MADGE (DOORMAN), JORDAN ZOELLNER, (6TH B&O)
  9. TANDE AWESOME DREAM-RED (AWESOME-RED), SETH TANDE, (7TH B&O)
  10. LONE-OAK-ACRES S ELLISON-ET (SOLOMON), JOHN J. SAUBER, (8TH B&O)
  11. JO-COSTA LADY SANSA-RED (ADVENT-RED), JULIETTE ALBRECHT

JUNIOR CHAMPION

  • JUNIOR CHAMPION: STRANSHOME A AFFECTION-RED (ADDICTION-P-RED), JOSEPH, ZACH, JEROME, & DARIAN STRANSKY, B&O
  • RESERVE JUNIOR CHAMPION: BUDJON-VAIL WILD CHILD-ET (DOC), CALVIN AND CHANDLER BENING
  • HONORABLE MENTION JUNIOR CHAMPION: SUNKIST CRUSH ACALLIE-ET (CRUSH), MALCOLM & SARAH BECK, PAT HEEREN

 

JUNIOR BEST THREE FEMALES (7):

  1. MACLAND HOLSTEINS
  2. FLOWER-BROOK HOLSTEINS
  3. SHEEKNOLL FARMS
  4. SUNKIST ACRES
  5. DEMMER FARMS
  6. MAT-AR-DOR HOLSTEINS
  7. FIER-VIEW FARMS

UNFRESH TWO-YEAR-OLD (1):

  1. GRACRES SOLOMON IVANKA (WALNUTLAWN SOLOMON-ET), ETHAN & MASON GRAMS, (1ST B&O)

DRY AGED COW (2):

  1. LIDA-ACRES DAMION ANNA-ET (DAMION), OLIVIA D. & MADILYN B. JOHNSON, (1ST B&O)
  2. DESTHAVEN LAUTHORITY PETRO (LAUTHORITY), STEVEN, DEBRA, DANIELLE & PATRICK HEUER, (2ND B&O) (1ST PRODUCTION)

GOLDEN GOPHER FUTURITY (7):

  1. PINE-SHELTER CEREA DORMN-ET (DOORMAN), MOLLY ALBERTS, (1ST B&O)
  2. LIDA-ACRES ATWOOD AMANDA-ET (ATWOOD), JACOB AND AIDEN TIMMER AND ANDREW ZYLSTRA
  3. MAT-AR-DOR AWESOME GLORY (AWESOME-RED), JACOB AND AIDEN TIMMER AND ANDREW ZYLSTRA, (2ND B&O)
  4. SCHA-HILL BRADNICK ALICIA (BRADNICK), JACOB SCHAEFER & WILLIAM SAMPSOM III, (3RD B&O)
  5. SCHILLVIEW-Q A SWEET BABY G (KHW KITE ADVENT-RED), CHARLES SCHILLER & QUENTIN SCOTT, (4TH B&O)
  6. PINE-SHELTER LAGUNA 1STCLAS (ZAHBULLS ALTA1STCLASS-ET), REAGAN SCHIMEK, (5TH B&O)
  7. CIRCLE-DRIVE SID JOSIE (PINE TREE SID-ET), SHELBY SWANSON

JUNIOR TWO-YEAR-OLD (9):

  1. PINE-SHELTER CEREA DORMN-ET (DOORMAN), MOLLY ALBERTS, (1ST B&O) (BEST UDDER)
  2. MAT-AR-DOR AWESOME GLORY (AWESOME-RED), JACOB AND AIDEN TIMMER AND ANDREW ZYLSTRA, (2ND B&O)
  3. WILSTAR SALOON BOBBIE (SANDY-VALLEY SALOON-ET), ARNIE, ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES
  4. SCHA-HILL BRADNICK ALICIA (BRADNICK), JACOB SCHAEFER & WILLIAM SAMPSOM III, (3RD B&O)
  5. CAMPANILE DEFNT 7481-RED-ET (DEFIANT), SOUTH DAKOTA STATE UNIVERSITY, (4TH B&O)
  6. AL-SHAR ATWOOD BEV (ATWOOD), WALKER L. ZOELLNER, (5TH B&O)
  7. SHERONA-HILL RAVISH (SANCHEZ), JOHN MARCHAND
  8. DEMMERS MARIO PATIENCE (MARIO), DEMMER FARMS, (6TH B&O)
  9. MS BPS BYWAY ADELE-ET (BYWAY), A & E PENZENSTADLER & C,C & K BUEHRING, (7TH B&O)

 

SENIOR TWO-YEAR-OLD (13):

  1. LIDA-ACRES ATWOOD AMANDA-ET (MAPLE-DOWNS-I G W ATWOOD-ET), OLIVIA D & MADILYN B JOHNSON, (1ST B&O) (BEST UDDER)
  2. BELFONTAINE DOORMAN DAISY (VAL-BISSON DOORMAN-ET), DOUGLAS PETZEL
  3. ORBE-VIEW G-DRMS JACKIE (HEAVENLY GOLDEN DREAMS-ET), NATHAN TITERA, ADAM G. & DANA JOHNSON, (2ND B&O)
  4. NEWALTA DOORMAN PORCHA-ET (VAL-BISSON DOORMAN-ET), IAN VANDER WAL, (3RD B&O)
  5. SCHILLVIEW-Q A SWEET BABY G (KHW KITE ADVENT-RED), CHARLES SCHILLER & QUENTIN SCOTT, (4TH B&O)
  6. OAKFIELD BRADY TOKYO-ET (BUTZ-BUTLER ATWOOD BRADY-ET), FLASHY HOLSTEINS & JENNY TRAPP
  7. PINE-SHELTER LAGUNA 1STCLAS (ZAHBULLS ALTA1STCLASS-ET), REAGAN SCHIMEK, (5TH B&O)
  8. JU-LAR REDBURST WONDER-RED (LOOKOUT-P-REDBURST-RED-ET), ETHAN & ALEXA LINDAHL, (6TH B&O)
  9. RAYLORE DOORMAN AVONIA (VAL-BISSON DOORMAN), LUKE OLSON, (7TH B&O)
  10. OLMAR DURHAM BELINDA-ET (REGANCREST ELTON DURHAM-ET), ISAAC NELSON, (8TH B&O)
  11. DEMMERS GOLDWYN PAISLEY-ET (BRAEDALE GOLDWYN-ET), DEMMER FARMS, (9TH B&O)
  12. SUNKIST DIAMONDBACK PAXTON (MR D APPLE DIAMONDBACK), JULIETTE ALBRECHT
  13. CIRCLE-DRIVE SID JOSIE (PINE TREE SID-ET), SHELBY SWANSON

 

JUNIOR THREE-YEAR OLD COW (2):

  1. JU-LAR DOORMAN PENNY (VAL-BISSON DOORMAN-ET), ETHAN AND ALEXA LINDAHL, (1ST B&O) (BEST UDDER) (1ST PRODUCTION)
  2. LUCK-E CRUSH ACCALIA (MAVERICK CRUSH), T SCHEAFER,S TANDE, R GROOS, M TIMMER

 

SENIOR 3-YEAR OLD IN MILK (9):

  1. MS ST-JACOB DEMPSEY AGAIN (DEMPSEY), JOSEPH, ZACH, JEROME, & DARIAN STRANSKY (BEST UDDER)
  2. SUNKIST AIRLIFT LEXUS LIVLEY (AIRLIFT), BENJAMIN DONNAY, (1ST B&O)
  3. KING-LANE ABS ALWAYS-RED-ET (ABSOLUTE-REDT), J SCHAEFER, G JACKSON, P&A WALDOCH
  4. T-SPRUCE RAGER 9384-RED (RAGER), ARNIE, ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES, (2ND B&O), (1ST PRODUCTION)
  5. MAT-AR-DOR BRADICK CARAMEL (BRADNICK), JACOB AND AIDEN TIMMER AND ANDREW AND AVERY ZYLSTRA, (3RD B&O)
  6. RAYLORE LICKETY SPLIT (SOLOMON), LOREN & LUKE OLSON, (4TH B&O)
  7. MAT-AR-DOR AIRLIFT STAR (AIRLIFT), JACOB M. & AIDEN J. TIMMER
  8. STRANS-JEN-D BARNIE TALKIN (BARNIE), ARNIE, ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES
  9. HOLLANDALE G W ATWOOD KRIS (ATWOOD), RICHARD L & ROGER L HOEN, (5TH B&O)

 

INTERMEDIATE CHAMPION:

  • INTERMEDIATE CHAMPION: MS ST-JACOB DEMPSEY AGAIN (DEMPSEY), JOSEPH, ZACH, JEROME, & DARIAN STRANSKY
  • RESERVE INTERMEDIATE CHAMPION: SUNKIST AIRLIFT LEXUS LIVLEY (AIRLIFT), BENJAMIN DONNAY, B&O
  • HONORABLE MENTION INTERMEDIATE CHAMPION: PINE-SHELTER CEREA DORMN-ET (DOORMAN), MOLLY ALBERTS, B&O

4-YEAR OLD IN MILK (14):

  1. FLOWER-BROOK ATWOOD GEE-ET (MAPLE-DOWNS-I G W ATWOOD-ET), ANDREW D. STUEWE, (1ST B&O) (BEST UDDER)
  2. MACLAND HF YODER RACHEL-ET (WOODCREST MOGUL YODER-ET), JAMES W. MCFARLAND, (2ND B&O)
  3. AUSPICIOUS FRANCHISE BOWLO (SONNEK MOGUL FRANCHISE-ET), ADAM G & DANA JOHNSON, JAKE & JOEB OYSTER
  4. T-SPRUCE DESIRED 9015-ET (TRIPLECROWN SS DESIRED-ET), ARNOLD T, ASHLEY L & ANDREW J GRUENES, (3RD B&O)
  5. FLOWER-BROOK GLADYS-RED-ET (APPLES ABSOLUTE-RED-ET), ANDREW D. STUEWE, (4TH B&O)
  6. SHEEKNOLL BEEMER 2577-ET (POL BUTTE MC BEEMER-ET), SHEEKNOLL FARMS, (5TH B&O)
  7. JACOBS CONTRAST BROOK (LARCREST CONTRAST-ET), JOHN J. SAUBER
  8. MINKOTA CEO JENNA (RICKLAND ALTACEO – ET), SEAN & LINDA GROOS, (6TH B&O)
  9. JERLAND SH GOLDWYN GIN-ET (BRAEDALE GOLDWYN), JOSEPH, ZACH, JEROME & DARIAN STRANSKY
  10. MILKSOURCE DNT TALIA-RED-ET (SCIENTIFIC B DEFIANT-ET), MELARRY FARMS
  11. OLMAR COLT 45 BABESY (MR CHASSITY COLT 45-ET), OLMAR FARMS, (7TH B&O)
  12. T-SPRUCE ARMANI 8668 RC (MR APPLES ARMANI-ET), ARNIE, ASHLEY AND ANDY GRUENES, (8TH B&O) (1ST PRODUCTION)
  13. LU-MANN AEROBEL (LONE-OAK-ACRES ALTAROBLE-ET), LUCAS PLAMANN AND REBECCA JOPP, (9TH B&O)
  14. DEMMERS REGINALD PARFAIT-TW (REGANCREST REGINALD-ET), DEMMER FARMS, (10TH B&O)

5-YEAR OLD IN MILK (2):

  1. LIDA-ACRES WOOD SCARLETT (WOOD), OLIVIA D. & MADILYN B. JOHNSON, (1ST B&O) (1ST PRODUCTION)
  2. JACOBS WINDBROOK DANIA-ET (WINDBROOK), CORY SCHMIDT

AGED COW IN MILK (4):

  1. LIDA-ACRES ATWOOD ANNIE (ATWOOD), OLIVIA D. & MADILYN B. JOHNSON, (1ST B&O) (BEST UDDER)
  2. AL-SHAR SDG MS ERIN-ET (HERO), JORDAN T. ZOELLNER, (2ND B&O)
  3. MT-ARARAT GOLDWYN EBRILL-ET ( GOLDWYN), REID STRANSKY & MARK BUTZ (1ST PRODUCTION)
  4. FLOWER-BROOK HEZTRY CARMEN RC (HEZTRY), ANDREW D. STUEWE, (3RD B&O)

150,000 LB COW (2):

  1. LIDA-ACRES DAMION ALLIE (ERBACRES DAMION), OLIVIA D. & MADILYN B. JOHNSON, (1ST B&O) (BEST UDDER)
  2. CIRCLE-DRIVE BRAXTON GIRL (REGANCREST S BRAXTON-ET), JACOB AND AIDEN TIMMER AND ANDREW ZYLSTRA (1ST PRODUCTION)

 

SENIOR CHAMPION:

SENIOR CHAMPION: FLOWER-BROOK ATWOOD GEE-ET (MAPLE-DOWNS-I G W ATWOOD-ET), ANDREW D. STUEWE, B&O

RESERVE SENIOR CHAMPION: MACLAND HF YODER RACHEL-ET (WOODCREST MOGUL YODER-ET), JAMES W. MCFARLAND, (B&O)

HONORABLE MENTION SENIOR CHAMPION: LIDA-ACRES ATWOOD ANNIE (ATWOOD), OLIVIA D. & MADILYN B. JOHNSON, (B&O)

 

GRAND CHAMPION

  • GRAND CHAMPION, BEST UDDER, AND TOP BRED AND OWNED: FLOWER-BROOK ATWOOD GEE-ET (ATWOOD), ANDREW D. STUEWE, (B&O)
  • RESERVE GRAND CHAMPION: MS ST-JACOB DEMPSEY AGAIN (DEMPSEY), JOSEPH, ZACH, JEROME, & DARIAN STRANSKY
  • HONORABLE MENTION GRAND CHAMPION: MACLAND HF YODER RACHEL-ET (YODER), JAMES W. MCFARLAND, (B&O)

DAUGHTER DAM (3):

  • LIDA-ACRES:
    • LIDA-ACRES ATWOOD AMANDA-ET (ATWOOD)
    • LIDA-ACRES DAMION ANNA-ET (DAMION)
  • LINDAHL FARMS:
    • JU-LAR DOORMAN PENNY (DOORMAN)
    • JU-LAR GOLD CHIP PRIMROSE (GOLD CHIP)
  • MAT-AR-DOR:
    • MAT-AR-DOR AIRLIFT STAR (AIRLIFT)
    • MAT-AR-DOR SOLOMON STELLA (SOLOMON)

 

PRODUCER OF DAM (1):

  1. CALVIN AND CHANDLER BENING:
    • BUDJON-ABBOTT ATLANTA-ET (CRUSH)
    • BUDJON-ABOTT C ANNAHEIM-ET (CRUSH)

PREMIER BREEDER AND EXHIBITOR: LIDA-ACRES

Introducing the Bulls of GenoSource!

GenoSource, LLC is excited to announce the launch of their bull lineup, offering bulls with unique traits and developing qualities. GenoSource’s goal has always been to develop a more efficient and profitable cow and they believe this line of genetics will help producers achieve just that. The official launch date is June 21, 2019.

GenoSource, LLC believes this new offering will allow dairymen to achieve their genetic goals while purchasing semen at a more reasonable price.

Semen will be offered worldwide, a published bull book is available on the GenoSource website.

“We are extremely excited to bring our genetics to the marketplace at affordable prices and with a quality product – we have worked extremely hard over the years to breed a cow for the future that is efficient and profitable for dairyman around the world.“ says Tim Rauen, Genetics Manger.

-Your Leading Genetic Source

Wisconsin District Show Highlights

Welsh-Edge Sid Hadara

Welsh-Edge Sid Hadara (owned by Heidi Petersheim) won District 2, ahead of Welsh-Edge Goldsun Gimmick (Ralph Petersheim). Triumphing in District 5 were Gamblin Armani Glad (Rosedale/Hovden/Borba) and Doorman daughter Rosedale Unscripteddrama as Reserve. District 7 was won by Ms Milksource Kyra, an Archrival out of Lovehill Katrysha from Milk Source LLC & Crescentmead, ahead of Synergy Anahiem Magnolia owned by Jauquet & Haack. Mar-Linda-K Sweet Sensation (<Airlift) and Eastriver Shimmer (<Lewisdale Black Gold) from Smithcrest Holsteins won in District 8.

Several buyers interested in purchasing Fonterra’s Dennington factory

A Fonterra spokeswoman said interested buyers had approached the milk processor after the company announced in May it would close the site later this year.

“We have been contacted by several non-dairy companies that have expressed interest. We are talking with them; however these discussions are commercial in confidence,” she said. 

The company said at the time of announcing the shutdown that it had explored all options for the site, including selling it, but there had been no genuine interest.

South-West Coast MP Roma Britnell, who had accused the company of “mothballing” the site, said she was aware of several interested buyers from the dairying industry. 

Ms Britnell said she met with Fonterra on Friday to discuss the site’s future options.

“My focus is the Dennington site and keeping it open, it is an important site for our community and if we can see that continue to be operational that’s what we are looking for,” she said.

“It is looking promising, I am hopeful for a positive outcome.” 

Fonterra milk supply general manager Matt Watt said the company was preparing to exit the site and exploring plans for possible environmental remediation.

“With local community groups and stakeholders we are going to have to make sure that whatever it looks like post (November), it’s in the shape people expect it to be,” Mr Watt said.

Focusing on what works

CLOSING Dennington will allow Fonterra to better utilise its remaining assets, milk supply general manager Matt Watt said while visiting the south-west.

Mr Watt said limited milk supply, drought, and the under-utilisation of the Dennington plant were the key reasons for the plant’s closure.

But he said the closure allowed Fonterra to focus on the “the stuff that works” which includes the high-value Western Star butter produced at Fonterra’s Cobden factory which attracts 200,000 new consumers a year.

“By putting milk in Dennington, it doesn’t create the same level of value as putting milk into Cobden and producing something like Western Star”,” Mr Watt said.

“So we make the choice that says ‘actually we are just going to double down on the stuff that works’.

“There are bits of our business in a smaller milk pool that aren’t as relevant and aren’t working.”

He also confirmed that milk was flowing out of south-west Victoria to Fonterra’s modern milk processing facility in Stanhope, increasing competition on the Dennington plant, but added it was “by no means the majority”.

“Over the last 12 months we have certainly seen milk move that way,” Mr Watt said.

“We have times where factories here will be shut, and that will increase with only having one plant here. We will be saying ‘where do we best allocate that milk?”

Mr Watt ruled out future risk to the Cobden plant, which he said was a “corner stone” of Fonterra’s Australian operations.

“Western Star is its forte. It also has powder-drying capability, and it’s a beverages plant. It’s a corner stone plant in terms of what we do,” he said.

“We have made our decision around our network, and what that does is make the rest of the network, and Cobden especially in this region stronger.”

‘Increase your milk price’

FONTERRA will review its opening milk price after suppliers called for a step-up at meetings in the south-west this week.

Farmers told Fonterra Australia’s managing director Rene Dedoncker and general manager Matt Watt in Warrnambool and Camperdown this week that they expected a step-up following announcements of competitors’ prices, some as high as $7.20.

Mr Watt said the company had announced its 2019-20 $6.60 a kilogram of milk solids opening price in May to give farmers certainty ahead of the new season.

“We have seen others come out with their prices and they have been high. We are going to have to respond to that,” Mr Watt said.

“We are reviewing that now, and we have said to farmers you can expect us to be competitive and you can expect to see that soon.” 

He said the business had between 250 and 300 south-west suppliers and the roadshow was an opportunity to discuss the “challenging” setting the industry faced.

“It’s clear it’s been a very challenging 12 months across the industry with droughts and changes,” Mr Watt said.

“We would expect to see production in the next 12 months to be lower than this last 12 months.”

Some farmers also have 12 months remaining on controversial ‘claw-back’ loans they received following Fonterra dropping its milk price in 2016, meaning a percentage of farmers could choose a different supplier when the loans mature.

“In terms of the loans itself, that’s around 20 per cent of our supply base,” Mr Watt said. 

“Now that’s significant, but I would say, if you look at the Dairy Australia stats, across the whole industry, 25 per cent of milk moved last year. 

“So that just reflects that the whole market is competitive and whether that’s this year or next year whether the loans expire, our farmers are going to have to see a bottom line return.”

Farmers make decisions for next season

WITH one-in-four of Australia’s dairy farmers choosing a new processor this year, farmers are looking at options for next season.

Dairy Australia says in 2019, 25 per cent of farmers changed processor, compared to 10 per cent in 2015. The number one reason was milk price.

Kennedy’s Creek Fonterra supplier Allan, who did not want his surname published, said he and others at the Camperdown meeting had pushed for a price step-up.

“They got the message and they reckon they are going to review it by the end of the week,” he said.

Allan said any price changes in coming weeks could determine if he remained a Fonterra supplier.

“I am under no contract so I can do what I like, it’s an open market,” he said.

Princetown Fonterra supplier Eva Vickers said she had supplied four different processors in the past two decades, but she had no plans to leave Fonterra. 

“If we think something affects our business to its detriment we will move,” Ms Vickers said.

“Fonterra have actually paid reasonably well in comparison over the last couple of years. They haven’t been at the bottom of the heap every year, I don’t think there is any reason to be looking elsewhere.”

South Purrumbete dairy farmer Adam Jenkins, a former Fonterra supplier, said trust between milk processors and farmers was taking time to rebuild following the dairy crisis and ongoing climate challenges.

“There’s no doubt that farmers are feeling very jaded over the last number of years. Yes we enjoy the competition. But the trust and transparency and the complication of the pricing and the special deals … and with fires and drought, people have reviewed their assets,” Mr Jenkins said.

But he said headline milk prices were of secondary importance to choosing a pricing structure that best suited farmers’ grass curve.

“Our farms business will look at maximising the grass that we have that maximises our profit. We are not interested in chasing a $7 milk price if it’s going to cost us $7.20 to produce it,” Mr Jenkins said. 

 

Source: The Standard

Cassie Gebert Crowned 2019 National Red & White Queen

There is a new reigning National Red and White Queen and she hails from Wawaka, Indiana. Cassie Gebert was crown the 2019-2020 Red and White Queen. She will spend the next year promoting the Red and White breed at shows and events. 
 
Cassandra Gebert is The 17-Year-old daughter of Chad & Angela Gebert from Wawaka, Indiana. She is a Junior at West Noble high school. Cassandra is a member of the West Noble FFA Chapter and currently holds the Vice President position. She is President of the Whitley County 4H Dairy Club. As a member of the Indiana State Jr. Holstein, she is representing them as the 2019 Indiana Holstein Princess. Cassandra travels in her role as IN Jr. Holstein’s princess to elementary schools teaching students and adults about the dairy industry. Cassandra has shown her Red and Whites on all levels and last year placed eighth at the World Dairy Expo Showmanship contest.

Congratulations Cassie!

Janina Siemers Named Dairywoman of the Year

World Dairy Expo is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2019 Expo Recognition Awards to be formally presented during the 53rd annual event, October 1-5 in Madison, Wisconsin. The honorees were nominated and selected by their peers for their contributions and excellence in the dairy industry and their community.

With esteem, we announce the 2019 honorees:

Dairy Woman of the Year
Janina Siemers, Siemers Holsteins, Newton, Wis. 

Dairyman of the Year
Steve Maddox, Maddox Dairy, Burrel, Calif. 

Industry Person of the Year
Dr. Randy Shaver, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Department of Dairy Science, Madison, Wis. 

International Person of the Year
Dr. Julio A. Brache Arzeno, Rica Group, Santo Domingo, DN, Dominican Republic

These individuals will be recognized at World Dairy Expo’s Dinner with the Stars, October 2, 2019 in the Exhibition Hall at the Alliant Energy Center.

 

Source: Siemers Holstein

Two Minnesota Holstein Association Members Run for Region 6 National Director

The Minnesota Holstein Association is proud to have two members that are running for the Holstein USA Region 6 Director position. Elections will be held at the 2019 Holstein Association USA, Inc. Annual Meeting on Wednesday, June 26, 2019 for officers and directors in Regions 1, 4, 6 and one at-large director. Any unsuccessful regional director candidate may run for the one at-large position.

On behalf of your fellow Holstein enthusiasts from Minnesota, we would like to introduce the two highly-qualified Minnesota candidates running for the National Holstein Board of Directors. Each of these upstanding Registered Holstein breeders continue to put forth elite genetics and unique breeding philosophies that shine in the barn and in the show ring. Their leadership in the industry and in their communities only complement their extensive accolades and speaks to the high level of character they each possess. Both continuously support the State and National Associations through their active participation in Holstein events. Multiple generations within our membership have benefited from the mentorship and advisement of each individual, as well as their willingness to tackle current issues facing the dairy industry and the Holstein cow. The Minnesota Holstein Association is proud to present both hardworking and dedicated individuals as candidates for the National Holstein Board of Directors:

Spencer Hackett – Rice, MN Mike Schiller – Freeport, MN
Background:

  • Spencer and his wife Stacey, alongside their two sons operate Melarry Farms.
  • Currently milk 170 cows and farm 1,000 acres

Leadership in Holstein:

  • 2019 MN Holstein Show/Sale/Futurity, committees
  • 2019 HAUSA Genetic Advancement Committee
  • 2001-2011 MN Holstein Board Member
    • President (2 years)
    • Executive board (5 years)
    • 2005 President’s Award, recipient
    • Breed Activities (Chair), State Sale (Vice Chair), Junior Activities, State Show
  • Spencer also serves on two local co-op boards, 4-H livestock and auction committee volunteer.  The farm hosts farm tours, as well as showing, fitting, and judging workshops.

Holstein Achievements:

  • Melarry Robust Miles-ET – 2016 Gold Metal Sire
  • Melarry Josuper Frazzled
  • 2005 National Distinguished Young Breeder
  • 2011 PDCA Distinguished Breeder
  • Markets genetics domestically and internationally
Background:

  • Mike and his wife Karen, alongside their son Charlie operate Schillview Holsteins.
  • Currently milk 100 cows and farm 380 acres

Leadership in Holstein:

  • 2019 MN State Holstein Sale, committee
  • 1990-1998 MN State Holstein Board Member
  • Associated Milk Producers (AMPI)
    • Corporate Board (12 years)
  • 2014-2019 World Dairy Expo, Board of Directors
  • Stearns County Holstein Association, member
  • Mike also serves as his township supervisor (9 years) and has hosted various events involving barn meetings, Holstein classification seminars, dairy cattle judging contests, fitting workshops,and  farm tours. Schillview Holsteins shows at county, state, and national competitions.

Holstein Achievements:

  • 2007 MN Livestock Breeders Association
    • Hall of Fame, Inductee
  • 2009 Minnesota Distinguished Holstein Breeder
  • He has marketed embryos and A.I. bulls to several foreign countries

 

Source: Minnesota Holstein Association

Top Dairy Industry News Stories from June 15th to 21st 2019

Top Stories:

Top News Stories:

Dairy Farmers Are Closing Up Shop. A Rite of Summer That Celebrates Them Lives On.

Thousands of people in Wisconsin visit farms each June for a tradition known as the dairy breakfast. In one county where the industry struggles, two families kept the breakfast going.

It was just shy of 5 a.m. on Saturday, and a determined crew of volunteers fanned out across the farm on Creamery Creek. Men mixed pancake batter in buckets. Daisies were arranged in vases on long tables. The smell of Folgers wafted through the tents.

Soon, a rural traffic jam materialized like something out of “Field of Dreams,” a long line of cars snaking through the countryside to reach the farm.

They came for the county dairy breakfast, which, like many Wisconsin traditions, is fiercely cherished within the state and mostly unknown outside of it. The annual early-summer gatherings are held across the state, with thousands of people showing up at a farm at dawn to socialize over a spectacularly lactose-rich spread of milk, yogurt, cheese curds, scrambled eggs, pancakes and sausage. For dessert, there is ice cream or frozen custard, often topped with local strawberries.

In rural Wisconsin, the dairy breakfast is as indispensable as a Fourth of July parade, an annual tradition that celebrates a common bond and gathers neighbors together.

This one almost didn’t happen.

Last year was a brutal one for dairy farmers in Wisconsin, as the price of milk slumped, cutting into profits. Many farmers simply gave up. Five years ago, there were 96 dairy herds in La Crosse County, where Creamery Creek Holsteins, the farm named for the stream that runs through it, sprawls across 2,200 acres. Now, there are 60.

Video

 
Credit

When the committee that plans the annual La Crosse County dairy breakfast met this spring, the members came to a crushing realization: No farmer had stepped forward to host and, with time running out, the breakfast would have to be called off.

“The dairy industry in Wisconsin is struggling to keep afloat, and our farmers in La Crosse County are not immune to this,” the committee posted on its Facebook page. “We remain hopeful that things will turn around and our farmers will pull through.”

Megan Hansen, a 21-year-old dairy science major at the University of Wisconsin whose family is an owner of Creamery Creek, called it the “woe-is-the-dairy-industry message.”

“I texted my dad and said, ‘We have to do this,’” she said.

Mark Hansen, her father, immediately agreed. “I got a tear in my eye reading that text,” he remembered.

Phone calls were placed. Family meetings were convened. Back-of-the-envelope calculations were made. Louisa Peterson, whose family co-owns the farm, was also unwilling to let the dairy breakfast die. Creamery Creek, which had hosted in 2018, would do it again, she announced.

More than 3,000 people were expected, and she had less than 12 weeks to prepare.

By the morning of the breakfast, the farm had been neatened. Antique tractors were on display. An old alfalfa field was now a parking lot.

When the color guard marched down a gravel road and fired a salute to begin the festivities, a line of cows in a nearby barn — tagged with numbers and names like Milkshake and Galapagos — startled and jumped to their feet. (Even cows know to stand at attention, a Marine in attendance said.)

“You have commanded us to work the land and cultivate it,” said the Rev. Raja Kennedy, a Roman Catholic priest, leading a prayer. “Your devoted people now pray that you will grant us an abundant harvest from our flocks, fields, vineyards and orchards.”

“Amen,” the crowd murmured.

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Creamery Creek Holsteins is the largest dairy in the county. Ms. Peterson and her husband, Justin, both 38, met as undergraduates at Michigan State University and moved to western Wisconsin in search of the farming life. In 2010, they partnered with the Hansen family, who had been farming their land since the 1930s.

The farming was different out here, Ms. Peterson quickly realized. The Driftless region of Wisconsin, which the glaciers missed during the ice age, is marked by river valleys and bluffs, so farms tend to have less room to spread out.

Creamery Creek is an exception, a relative behemoth with 675 cows and 11 full-time employees. All four Peterson children pitch in with chores around the farm.

Louisa Peterson, left, with her husband, Justin, and their children at the dairy breakfast.

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Louisa Peterson, left, with her husband, Justin, and their children at the dairy breakfast.

On the day of the breakfast, Ms. Peterson, friendly and unflappable, was a jack-of-all-trades — decision maker, problem solver, farmer.

“If this is the only farm people ever visit, if this is the only farmer they ever meet, what do I want them to see?” she said. “That’s why I do the breakfast.”

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At 7 a.m., a three-person band began playing “Stand by Me.” (They would have come earlier, Ms. Peterson said, but they had to milk their own cows.)

The breakfast tends to have different meanings for people, depending on where they stand on the generational ladder. Those who have been coming for decades often grew up on a farm and like the excuse to come back to one.

For younger families who live in the college town of La Crosse, the breakfast is more of an agri-tourism activity, an opportunity to show their small children how a cow is milked and where food comes from.

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Dale Kirchner, 84, grew up on a farm in Mindoro and worked for the local agricultural co-op for 52 years. When he was a boy, there were 34 dairy farms in the valley where his parents farmed, he said. Now there is one.

It used to be that nearly everybody worked in the same business, said his wife, Betty. Hollywood has film. Washington has politics. And this part of Wisconsin had dairy.

“There are so many scary changes, but you just have to accept them,” she said, checking on a vat of coffee. “You can’t be bitter. It’s just progress.”

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Betty Kirchner.

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Dale Kirchner.

Then there is the rising generation on the farm, full of ambition and ideas.

Megan Hansen is studying agriculture, and like many young would-be farmers, she plans to get an advanced degree.

“A lot of people tell me, ‘You shouldn’t go into this,’” she said. “But I want to do something to help the industry.”

She was an ambassador of sorts for the business on Saturday, watching the birth of a heifer calf that attracted a crowd of onlookers and feeding a 3-day-old calf a mixture of electrolytes and water.

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“It’s like Gatorade for cows,” she said.

Jeff Heitkamp, chairman of the dairy breakfast committee, was running on about 30 minutes’ sleep on the day of the event, after being consumed for weeks by the planning process. He keeps doing the work for its own rewards, even though he was recently laid off from his job as a salesman in the agriculture business.

Jeff Heitkamp and Ms. Peterson.

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Jeff Heitkamp and Ms. Peterson.

Mr. Heitkamp grew up on a farm in East Dubuque, Ill., and has never worked in another field. He is considering two job leads right now — one of them in a different business.

“I don’t know if I’ll still be in the dairy industry down the road,” he said. “So many farms are selling out. I’d like to stay. But it’s getting harder and harder.”

As the lines dwindled and guests left the farm, Ms. Peterson, finally able to relax, took her first bite of food all day — a spoonful of frozen custard. She has already volunteered to host another dairy breakfast, but for a notably far-off and specific year, 2032, when the farm would celebrate its 100th birthday.

Most of her children will be grown by then. The oldest, Joseph, who is 12, has “an incredible sense of duty,” she said, doing chores without complaint.

He says that he wants to be a priest, another job that is sorely needed in La Crosse County, where their pastor shuttles between parishes.

Ms. Peterson is supportive of whatever her children someday decide to do, she said, especially if one of them goes into the dairy industry.

New USDA Program, Other Assistance, About to Kick in for America’s Dairy Industry

Each June, we celebrate National Dairy Month! Since 1937, this month has been set aside to mark the importance of the dairy industry and the products it produces to America’s agricultural sector and to hundreds of millions of Americans and consumers around the world.

Many of the country’s 37,000 dairy farms are family-owned, and more than 3 million jobs are supported, with $38 billion in direct wages for workers, by the U.S. dairy industry.

Times are tough for America’s dairy industry. Costs are high, and margins have been squeezed. In fact, the dairy industry is now in its fifth consecutive year of low prices, which – at least in part – prompted more than 2,700 dairy farms to go out of business in 2018 alone.

Dairy Margin Coverage Program

USDA is working to support dairy producers. One way is through the Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program, which producers can begin signing up for this week. The signup began Monday and runs through Sept. 20. USDA has partnered with the University of Wisconsin-Madison to provide a DMC decision tool that will help producers make coverage choices that will best benefit their individual dairy operation.

Want to Sign-up?

Through the provisions of the 2018 Farm Bill, dairy producers will be eligible for coverage retroactive to January 1, 2019. It’s expected to be a vast improvement over the former Margin Protection Program for Dairy (MPP-Dairy), with lower premiums.

The DMC program offers protection to dairy producers when the difference between the all-milk price and the average feed cost (the margin) falls below a certain dollar amount selected by the producer. So far this year, DMC payments have triggered in January, February, March and April.

The 2018 Farm Bill also allows dairy producers who had been covered and paid premiums under MPP-Dairy to be eligible for reimbursements. An operation either can receive 50 percent of the reimbursement amount as a cash refund or take 75 percent of the amount as a credit toward premiums for DMC. Producers must make repayment elections by September 20, 2019.

Implementing the 2018 Farm Bill

FSA and other USDA agencies are working diligently to implement the new programs and policies of the 2018 Farm Bill. DMC was the first large implementation effort of FSA because we recognize the importance of making this program available to dairy producers.

Producers interested in learning more about the program should contact their local FSA county office. Additionally, FSA is planning outreach meetings in some local communities to help with sharing information and answering questions on the new program. Learn more on the DMC webpage as well as by listening to this June 17 webinar.

WA dairy farmer announced as Holstein Australia Youth UK Exchange winner

Fourth-generation dairy farmer, Tahlia McSwain, from Chapman Hill in Western Australia has been announced as the 2019 Holstein Australia Youth UK Exchange winner. Funded by Holstein Australia, in partnership with Holstein UK, the exchange begins in late September.

Tahlia will spend a month travelling the length and breadth of Britain staying and working with Holstein UK members, and will also take part in the South West Dairy Show, the UK’s largest dairy show, and the All Britain All Breeds Calf Show. The All Breeds All Britain Calf Show is one of the highlights of the UK’s Holstein Young Breeders calendar, featuring showmanship & calf conformation classes for seven dairy breeds.

The focus of Tahlia’s trip will be learning, practical on-farm experience, skills development and networking. She will gain first-hand knowledge of dairy farming in the UK and is planning to use that information to further her own career in the family business, Boallia Creek Holsteins.

Twenty-four year old Tahlia is a Western Dairy Young Dairy Network committee member, Southern Districts Rural Ambassador and graduated from Charles Sturt University with a Bachelor of Agricultural Business Management. She holds a Certificate III in Agriculture through the National Centre for Dairy Education Australia.

In conjunction with her parents, Kingsley and Judy, Tahlia runs Boallia Creek Holsteins, milking 600 Holsteins on the 800-hectare property. The farm has been in the McSwain family since 1930 when Ms McSwain’s great-grandfather moved from Victoria to set up the farm with humble beginnings – six Jerseys and 38 hectares as part of the WA Government’s group settlement farm program.

Tahlia’s passion in the business is in the breeding and genetic selection of her animals and the science of improving overall milk quantity and quality. She is also focused on the many changes facing the industry and how the next generation of dairy farmers will need to adapt to meet an environment shaped by a changing climate and animal welfare issues.

“I’m really excited to be heading to the UK in September and looking forward to gaining a real insight into the differences and similarities in the Holstein world between the two countries.

“Visiting Holstein operations overseas, understanding the way they farm and operate, is a fantastic opportunity. In an ever-changing world with technology in farming becoming more and more important to meet the challenges my generation will face, seeing the technologies available in Europe will allow me to bring back ideas for the future of Boallia Creek,” says Ms McSwain.

Graeme Gillan, Holstein Australia CEO, says Tahlia’s passion, knowledge and commitment to the dairy industry, the Holstein breed and the family business were key in her selection for the exchange.

“Our interview panel were impressed with Tahlia’s vision, and how she intends to use the experience she gains in the UK to further both her dairy career and the family business. She will be a great ambassador for the next generation of the dairy industry in Australia overseas.

“Interest in the Holstein Australia Youth UK Exchange continues to grow, with a record number of applicants this year. Overall the calibre of applicants was very high, and if this is representative of our future dairy farmers and industry leaders, I think the Australian dairy industry will be in very good hands,” says Mr Gillan.

The return leg of the exchange program will take place in early 2020 with a young UK dairy farmer spending a month working with Holstein Australia members in Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia, taking in International Dairy Week and a dairy youth camp.

 

Source: NewsMaker

Dairy Australia Situation and Outlook June 2019

As farmers prepare for the season ahead, the Situation and Outlook report ensures farmers and the industry have access to current market insights and future projections to inform farm business decisions.

High costs have pressured Australian dairy farmers, resulting in lower milk production and low farmer confidence. Well-balanced global markets, exchange rates, competition among processors and autumn rainfall are all in dairy farmers’ favour. As dairy farmers look to take advantage of some of the highest farm-gate prices in recent years, grain, hay and water prices will be the key to profit.

Access episode six of Dairy Australia’s podcast to hear Dairy Australia Trade and Strategy group manager Charlie McElhone discuss key insights from the report with senior analyst John Droppert.

 
 

Westland Milk boss promised $680k bonus if sale to Chinese goes through

Westland Milk Products chief executive Toni Brendish has been criticised for a “huge conflict of interest” over a $680,000 bonus if the co-operative is sold to Chinese company, Yili.

Bonuses will also be paid to other top management including $360,000 to its chief operating officer, $302,700 to its general sales manager and $100,000 to its chief financial officer.

Otago University senior accountancy lecturer Dr Helen Roberts said it appeared Yili was willing to pay the management to encourage farmers to sell their assets, raising a conflict of interest.

“If you were in that position would you say no?

“It’s a problem with these kinds of ownership structures where the management is supposed to represent the best interests of the true owners, but they have a conflict because they have their self-interest vested in their remuneration,” Roberts said.

Harihari farmer Jon Sullivan accused the Westland board of “taking the p…” out of farmers and that the sale was against New Zealand’s interests.

The bonuses are to be paid by Yili if farmers vote in favour of the sale on July 4 of the century-old company that is the West Coast’s biggest industry and employer.

The average West Coast farmer will receive $500,000 cash, plus the Fonterra equivalent payout price for the next 10 years. State-owned corporate farmer, Landcorp, will receive $11 million for the 3.25m shares it holds.

Brendish is paid $1.1m a year, and 16 further employees receive more than $200,000.

For years the co-op has struggled to make a profit, last year finally managing to run into the black with a $3.3m profit before tax.

Controversially in 2016 former boss Rod Quin was handed a departing bonus of $290,000, despite the co-op recording an after-tax loss of $14.5m.

Agriculture Minister and West Coast-Tasman MP Damien O’Connor has described the bonus deal as “outrageous and an insult to farmers”.

However, Westland board chairman Pete Morrison, who was paid $142,500 for his governance role, has defended the promised bonuses.

He said they were negotiated when the offer was made last year by Yili, and were standard to stop top management from leaving during the sale process, and would be made only if the deal went through.

“If senior executives left during the process it would have presented a picture of instability and that would have undermined possible interest and proposals,” Morrison said in a statement.

Management were also not involved in selling the sale to farmers and other stakeholders.

Sullivan said the $500,000 being offered to the average farmer had to be put into context.

“Last year I was $300,000 behind the price paid to Fonterra farmers and we’ve had that for the last few years, so the $500,000 is just a fraction of what we’ve missed out on.”

He also queried the role of Australian investment banker Macquarie, which is managing the sale. It would receive at least $5.8m if the sale did not go ahead, and much more if it got across the line, but the amount had not been disclosed.

Sullivan complained shareholders had not been given enough time to scrutinise the sale. He hoped it would be opposed and a “ruthless” person would be appointed to turn the co-op around.

Roberts queried whether Brendish would also have been promised the carrot of a continuing chief executive role at Westland.

“Someone’s going to have to manage it, at least be an interim manager, the new owners won’t know everything they need to know,” Roberts said.

The deal was likely to be a good one for the Chinese buyers because they knew the demand for high quality milk products in China and they would have direct access to the market there without having to go through a lot of red tape.

“Even though it might seem they’re paying a lot, in the long term they’ll make money,” Roberts said.

 

Source: Stuff

Farm produces Alaska’s first Grade-A goat dairy products

An Alaska farm has begun selling the state’s first certified goat milk dairy products.

The Kodiak Daily Mirror reported Thursday that Baptist Mission Heritage Farm in Kodiak recently acquired the Grade-A certification necessary to sell products commercially.

The farm sold its first batch of goat milk ice cream last week.

Kelli Foreman of Baptist Mission says the ice cream will be sold at a farmers market on Saturdays during the summer.

She hopes to expand the times they are sold and the flavors, which now include salted caramel, key-lime pie, mint chocolate chip, and birthday cake.

Foreman says goat cheese varieties including a Monterey Jack version called Kodiak Jack, feta and other soft cheeses are expected to go on sale in the last weekend of June.

Source: Madison.com

Double Digit Gains on Milk Markets in Chicago Thursday

On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange milk futures closed higher again Thursday supported by strength in cash markets and increasing slaughter numbers. Futures contracts closed higher across the board in Class III up double digits in certain months. June added a penny to $16.29 while July traded 16 cents higher and August was up 15. September through December moved 6-10 cents higher and first half 2020 added 205 cents per cwt. Class IV milk results were mixed. June through October ranged from 3 lower to 6 higher. 

Cheese trade led markets higher on Thursday.  Barrels up $0.03 at $1.72. Seven trades were made ranging from $1.70 to $1.72.  Blocks up $0.0225 at $1.8225. Three trades were made ranging from $1.8150 to $1.8225. Dry whey unchanged at $0.3425. Butter up $0.0125 at $2.3875. One trade was made at $2.39. Nonfat dry milk down $0.0050 at $1.04. Two trades were made at that price.

Grain markets rebound Thursday after a brief 2 day drop. Corn added 9 cents of value back to its price closing at $4.50 per bu. in July and $4.61 in December. Soybeans jumped 12.25 cents to a new crop price of $9.41 per bu. Bean meal added $6 a ton. The wheat complex was mixed with Chicago gaining 5 cents, Kansas City up 2-3, and Minneapolis was down 3. 

Inspect tower silos while empty

Many dairy producers are starting the silage season with empty silos this summer, says Reagan Bluel, dairy specialist for University of Missouri Extension. That presents a good opportunity to inspect those silos for problems.

Producers turned to silage stockpiles this winter to feed cattle after the drought of 2018.

Tower silos, designed to store chopped fermented silage, are at risk due to age and use. Concrete and steel corrosion compromises the structural integrity of the silo. “As a result, tower silos in disrepair may collapse because they can no longer carry the design loads caused by the stored forage,” says MU Extension agricultural engineer Joe Zulovich.

Empty silos are easier to inspect for structural damage than those being topped off, says Bluel.

“Now is the time to make a visual check the entire exterior for cracks and settlement,” she says. “Additionally, check interior sidewalls for cracks and degradation. If you can see daylight through a tower silo wall, you have a tower silo that is likely structurally compromised.”

Check the silo discharge door, roof and wall openings for sagging, she adds. Roofs can receive damage from overfilling, vibrations and the environment. Check regularly.

Climb into the silo and inspect sidewalls for cracks and bulges. Wear a mask to prevent breathing issues in the confined space.

Immediately make a plan if you find faults. Consider treating surface problems to prevent collapse, or using alternative storage for the 2019 silage crop. Perform regular preventive maintenance.

During her work with dairy farmers in southwestern Missouri, Bluel finds that leaning silos usually collapse within 24 hours. This puts lives and crops at risk. Proactive inspections reduce the likelihood of injury and costly cleanup. Zulovich notes that many silo failures are not included on insurance policies.

Be sure to harvest corn silage at the correct moisture, Bluel says. “If harvesting forage when it is juicier than ideal, as the feed ferments, the excess leachate containing acid from the silage will eat away at the concrete walls and foundation and weaken silo structure.”

Bluel says it is important to train new workers on the correct way to blow silage or green fodder into the silo.

Teach workers to blow silage using a silo forage distributer to evenly spread forage or blow forage exactly into the center of the silo to evenly load silo walls.  Uneven loads on a tower silo wall will likely cause the silo to collapse. Teach workers how to properly unload the forage wagon and monitor the silo blower. Use fall protection and work with a partner, particularly during harvest season, Bluel says.

Bluel recommends “Deterioration of Concrete Tower Silos,” a fact sheet from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, available for download here.

According to the International Silo Association, stone structures for grain storage date back more than 3,000 years. Until the 1800s, silage was typically stored in pits. An Illinois farmer named Fred Hatch is often credited with building the first modern silo in the U.S. in 1873. He dug an 8-foot pit in his barn and built a 16-foot aboveground extension made of wood. In an 1891 bulletin from the University of Wisconsin (updated in 1919 by the University of Missouri), agricultural scientist F.H. King promoted an improved type of silo that drew on the lessons of his detailed study of silo designs in the Midwest. The King Silo, as it came to be known, featured a now-familiar cylindrical design that reduced spoilage by eliminating corner air pockets and allowing tighter packing of silage. The following years saw extensive silage education through farm magazines, agricultural college bulletins and field demonstrations. Dairy and beef regions adopted the technology. Beef operations needed more storage capacity, and concrete block/stave and poured concrete silos appeared. While silos are not the only method for storing silage, this old science is still highly effective in storing high-quality feed for your dairy, says Bluel.

 

Source: MU Extension

Meek and Buttars Receive CowManager Specialist of the Year Awards

Brad Meek, Preston, Idaho, and Dallin Buttars, Logan, Utah, were recognized at the 2019 Select Reproductive Solutions® (SRS®) Conference as recipients of CowManager® Specialist of the Year awards. The annual conference was hosted by Premier Select Sires in Roanoke, Va., in early June.

“Select Sires MidAmerica is very fortunate to have Brad Meek and Dallin Buttars as integral players on our team,” says Randy Hill, general manager of Select Sires MidAmerica. “Brad has a highly respected influence on many large dairies in the western region. His confidence in CowManager’s abilities has been vital in the installation and continued support of the system on several of the largest dairies in Idaho and Utah. Dallin brings innovative ideas and excitement to the team. The influence of CowManager on his family’s dairy has provided him with first-hand knowledge of the product’s success and puts him in a great position to serve customer-owners. Both Brad and Dallin have become trusted advisors for reproduction and genetics in our region.”

Meek, a graduate of Utah State University, has been with Select Sires MidAmerica for 20 years and has served as both an SRS specialist and a genetic consultant for the Select Mating Service® (SMS®) program. Beginning July 1, he will transition to the role of marketing director for the western region and assistant manager for the newly merged Select Sires MidAmerica cooperative.

Buttars has been with Select Sires MidAmerica for four years and is a graduate of Utah State University. He serves herds throughout Utah in both SRS and SMS roles and has installed CowManager systems in herds of 20 to 10,000 cows. Today, Buttars is a supervisor for the collegiate judging contest at the Western Spring National Holstein Show.

Based in Plain City, Ohio, Select Sires Inc., is North America’s largest A.I. organization and is comprised of seven farmer-owned and -controlled cooperatives. As the industry leader, it provides highly fertile semen as well as excellence in service and programs to achieve its basic objective of supplying dairy and beef producers with North America’s best genetics at a reasonable price.

 

Source: Select Sires

Electronic ID to replace metal tags

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is beginning the process to move from using metal identification tags to electronic tags for beef and dairy cattle along with bison. As of right now, this change in ID tags will only apply to cattle previously required to have the traditional metal tags.

By Jan. 1, 2023, electronic tags that use radio frequency identification (RFID) will be required and all animals who have metal tags will need to be retagged with the approved electronic IDs, according to a USDA fact sheet.

These electronic tags are not implants and will still be able to be read visually or with an electronic reader.

In April of 2019, the USDA published a fact sheet outlining the timeline of electronic ID implementation:

As of Dec. 31, 2019, the “USDA will discontinue providing free metal tags;” however, the metal tags will still “be available for purchase on a state-by-state basis” through Dec. 31, 2020.

On Jan. 1, 2021, “Veterinarians and/or producers can no longer apply metal ear tags for official identification and must start using only official RFID tags”

By Jan. 1, 2023, “RFID ear tags will be required for beef and dairy cattle and bison moving interstate that meet … requirements. Animals previously tagged with metal ear tags will have to be retagged with RFID ear tags in order to move interstate.”

The USDA does not need congressional approval to implement electronic tags as the primary form of identification.

According to Aaron Scott, director of the National Animal Disease Traceability and Veterinary Accreditation Center, “There are no changes to the current regulations, so congressional approval is not required. Animals covered by the rule (9CFR Part 86) are currently required to have official identification to move interstate … Only tags approved by the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service administrator may be used for activities under part 86 such as interstate movement.”

The USDA fact sheet also outlined the types of livestock that currently require, and will continue to require, identification tags. These include: “Beef cattle and bison (who are) sexually intact and 18 months or older; used for rodeo or recreation events (regardless of age); or used for shows or exhibitions. All female dairy cattle and all male dairy cattle born after March 11, 2013.”

The fact sheet also stated that “feeder cattle and animals moving directly to slaughter are not subject to RFID requirements”

Chelsea Good, Livestock Marketing Association’s vice president of government and industry affairs, commented on the animal traceability rule that went into effect in 2013 and explained that “while it is important, we need to oppose expansion of mandatory animal ID into feeder cattle.”

As for the new timeline and regulations that the USDA is moving forward with, Good stated that she “appreciates that (RFID tags) are not mandatory for all livestock.”

FEEDBACK

She went on to say that the LMA has hosted meetings to get feedback about changes in animal ID’s from their membership and at those meetings they experienced “less push back than expected.”

The introduction of mandatory RFID tags would mean that sale barns would need to add electronic readers.

According to Scott, “throughout 2017 and 2018, USDA met with state and industry stakeholders to discuss the way forward … at over 20 face-to-face public meetings.”

Scott went on to say that, “Although there were differences of opinion, some major themes arose from cattlemen and women, as well as veterinarians and state officials across the country.” Some of these themes included that the change to RFID tags should not affect feeder cattle, the cost of transitioning away from metal tags, access to traceability data and producer concern about data confidentiality, and concern about the reliability of APHIS’s data systems.

Another theme discussed was the “economic losses created by the need to restrain cattle to manually read and record the official ID number on small visual-only ear tags,” Scott said.

The new regulations have also caused division among livestock groups. In an April press release from the South Dakota Stockgrowers Association, executive director James Halverson expressed concern about division within The Cattle Traceability Working Group, which is “a group of interested organizations and companies wanting to give input on animal identification and how that system will work and function in the future.”

At a meeting in Des Moines, Iowa, some members of the CTWG formed their own “Producers Council” that is made up of only livestock industry individuals and USDA officials who support electronic ID.

In the press release, Halverson stated that, “We aren’t against electronic ID, in fact that can be a useful tool that many producers, including several on our board of directors have decided to use, but we are against a top-down approach mandated to producers with little regard to whether that system will even work.”

“We’ve used the existing tools for a long time, and mostly effectively,” South Dakota State Vet Dr. Dustin Oedekoven stated.

CURRENT SYSTEM

Currently the USDA provides the orange metal tags free of charge. These metal tags are attached at the time of bangs vaccination primarily onto breeding age cattle that travel interstate, with some exceptions.

In South Dakota, the metal tag numbers along with brand information is stored in a data base located at the state veterinary office in Pierre. These two modes of identification are then used to track and trace any disease threats that the state may encounter.

Oedekoven explained that the orange metal tags were developed when brucellosis was a serious disease threat, but since 2000 South Dakota has been free of that disease which means that there is less of a reason to continue vaccinating for brucellosis.

According to Halverson, the current metal tag system has “proven to be a fairly adequate and good system.”

He said that in the last few years there have been a few bovine tuberculosis cases, but using just the brand and bangs ID numbers, they were able to track down the infected animal within 48 hours. It should also be noted that all of the TB cases in South Dakota have traced back to cattle imported from Mexico.

Oedekoven explained that an RFID tag “doesn’t have the capacity to store information … so there is no more information on an RFID than we have on a metal tag.”

Applying RFID tags wouldn’t have to be something that a veterinarian must administer, producers could apply for a premise identification number (PIN), purchase their own RFID tags and apply them without going through a vet.

“Producers are used to metal tags, not that they couldn’t transition, but the timeline is fairly aggressive,” Oedekoven said.

 

Source: The Fence Post

Witness Confirms ARM Employee Coerced Behavior Seen in Fair Oaks Abuse Video

According to detectives are investigating claims that the Animal Recovery Mission employee that captured animal abuse at Fair Oaks Farms “A third-party witness has come forward to corroborate the allegations made by a suspect that the ARM employee encouraged or coerced the behavior depicted in the portions of the video that have been released publicly.”

The Newton County Prosecutors say detectives are continuing to investigate the claims through additional interviews and written discovery.

The investigation stems from a disturbing video released by ARM, a nonprofit. The footage shows employees abusing calves and using drugs at the Indiana dairy farm.

Three people are facing a charge of beating a vertebrate animal as a result of the activity seen in the video. As of Tuesday, only one of the suspects, 36-year-old Edgar Gardozo-Vasquez, has been arrested.  On June 12 Edgar was taken into custody on a warrant for animal cruelty and torturing or mutilating a vertebrate animal. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has a hold on Gardozo-Vasquez. It’s believed he was in the country illegally and had been apprehended by ICE officers previously. 

ARM issued this statement, denying the allegations made against them:

“The statement sent out by the Newton County’s Prosecutors Office that an ARM Investigator coerced or encouraged the abuse of innocent animals at Fair Oaks Farms, couldn’t be further from the truth. The Newton County Sheriff’s and Prosecutors Office has yet to reach out to Animal Recovery Mission’s main witness in this case for any additional statement. For prosecutors to release such an unfounded and bogus information that is part of an open and ongoing criminal case, is not only unprofessional, but irresponsible, as it could have a negative effect on this very important criminal case. It is apparent that this prosecutor is attempting to divert public attention away from Fair Oaks Farms and Mike McCloskey in order to create doubt on a professionally put together investigation into Newton County. Once again, the Animal Recovery Mission is reaching out to both the Sheriff’s and Prosecutors Office to give our first formal statements.”

Fair Oaks issued this statement:

Law enforcement’s investigation will follow its own course. We continue to focus and make every effort to ensure the safety and welfare of our animals so this never happens again. For further information on the progress of our commitments, visit https://fofarms.com/.

 

‘Dairy is Scary’ billboards outrage New Brunswick farmers

Dairy farmers in New Brunswick are upset over advertising on billboards in Moncton and buses in Fredericton that claim “dairy is scary.”

The anti-dairy program is being supported by a vegan group trying to encourage people to strike dairy from their diets.

“We want to bring awareness to the horrors of the dairy industry that many people are not aware,” said Bill Wilson of Vegan Education Group New Brunswick, who also represents the Halifax chapter of the group.

The billboards, one showing a calf saying “dairy took my mom and my life,” were placed on facing Main Street in Moncton in the mid-June.

One of the billboards points people to watch blogger Erin Janus’s YouTube video posted in 2015 about the dairy industry, viewpoints Wilson said the group supports.

“Forcible impregnating cows so that they can produce milk, it involves removing babies from their mothers within 24 hours after birth mothers can bellow for days.”

But the messages have left a sour taste in the mouth of dairy farmer Mike Mullin, who has a dairy farm in Steeves Mountain, N.B.

“It’s just really hard to see this sort of stuff toward the dairy farmers,” he said.

Mullin says its false advertising, as it’s in a dairy farmer’s financial best interest to treat his cows with care.

“If we don’t look after our cows they don’t give milk, that’s for sure,” said Mullin.

He says animal cruelty as shown in the video is not at all commonplace in the industry. While he supports the vegan group’s right to free speech, he says their message is one sided and could harm an already struggling industry

“Check your facts. Get them right,” Mullin said.

But Wilson believes dairy farmers across the country should move away from milk production and instead grow plant-based commodities.

“We don’t have any need for dairy. In fact, the Canada Food Guide eliminated dairy as a food group,” said Wilson.

The group has no plans on slowing down its campaign against dairy. Over the next two weeks, they plan on putting up more billboards in the Halifax area.

Source: globalnews.ca

From Two Bulls, 9 Million Dairy Cows

There are more than 9 million dairy cows in the United States, and the vast majority of them are Holsteins, large bovines with distinctive black-and-white (sometimes red-and-white) markings. The amount of milk they produce is astonishing. So is their lineage. When researchers at the Pennsylvania State University looked closely at the male lines a few years ago, they discovered more than 99 percent of them can be traced back to one of two bulls, both born in the 1960s. That means among all the male Holsteins in the country, there are just two Y chromosomes.

If Holsteins were wild animals, they would fit in the category of critically endangered species.

“What we’ve done is really narrowed down the genetic pool,” says Chad Dechow, one of the researchers.

The females haven’t fared much better. In fact, Dechow — an associate professor of dairy cattle genetics — and others say there is so much genetic similarity among them, the effective population size is less than 50. If Holsteins were wild animals, that would put them in the category of critically endangered species. “It’s pretty much one big inbred family,” says Leslie B. Hansen, a Holstein expert and professor at the University of Minnesota.

Any elementary science student knows that genetic homogeneity isn’t good in the long term. It increases the risk of inherited disorders while also reducing the ability of a population to evolve in the face of a changing environment. Dairy farmers struggling to pay bills today aren’t necessarily focusing on the evolutionary prospects of their animals, but Dechow and his colleagues were concerned enough that they wanted to look more closely at what traits had been lost.

For answers, the researchers have begun breeding a small batch of new cows, cultivated in part from the preserved semen of long deceased bulls, to measure a host of characteristics — height, weight, milk production, overall health, fertility, and udder health, among other traits — and compare those to the modern Holsteins we’ve created. The hope is that they might one day be able to inject some sorely needed genetic diversity back into this cornerstone of livestock agriculture, and possibly reawaken traits that have been lost to relentless inbreeding.

“If we limit long term genetic diversity of the breed,” Dechow says, “we limit how much genetic change can be made over time.”

In other words, we could reach a point where we’re stuck where we’re at. There will be no more improvement in milk production. Fertility won’t improve. And if a new disease comes along, huge swaths of the cow population could be susceptible, since so many of them have the same genes.


Holsteins today are responsible for the vast majority of milk we drink and much of our cheese and ice cream. For at least the past century, these animals have been prized for their voluminous output. Over the last 70 years or so, humans have introduced a variety of methods to ramp up production even further. In 1950, for example, a single dairy cow produced about 5,300 pounds of milk a year. Today, the average Holstein is producing more than 23,000. In 2017, a prize-winning cow named Selz-Pralle Aftershock 3918 cranked out 78,170 pounds of milk — more than 200 pounds every single day.

“These cows are real athletes,” says Hansen.

This benefits consumers by keeping food prices low. It benefits farmers because they save on costs when fewer cows produce the same amount of milk. It also benefits the environment because a cow’s digestive system produces considerable amounts of methane and waste. (Although high-producing Holsteins consume more energy and generate more waste per cow, researchers estimate that the efficiency gains result in significantly reduced environmental impacts overall.)

Part of this success story has to do with changing the way Holsteins are raised and managed. But the biggest change has been in the way cows are bred. Long ago, farmers would bring in bulls from other farms to get their cows pregnant — a way of ensuring genetic diversity, or “stirring the pot,” as Hansen says. In the 1940s, they began to use artificial insemination. This way, a single dose of bull semen could be used to impregnate a whole lot of heifers. Soon, technology allowed the semen to be frozen, which meant a bull could father calves for decades, even long after he was dead. Meanwhile, the dairy world was keeping very detailed records, so the bull studs who sell the semen could tell which bull went on to produce the best offspring — and by the best offspring, they meant the daughters who produced the most milk.

By this point, a highly sought-after bull would sire thousands of daughters. Carlin-M Ivanhoe Bell, a bull born in 1974, had more than 80,000 offspring. Most bulls have fewer, though their progeny still number in the thousands. By the 80s, it was clear inbreeding was increasing significantly.

In 2017, a prize-winning cow named Selz-Pralle Aftershock 3918 cranked out 78,170 pounds of milk — more than 200 pounds every single day.

In the early days of artificial insemination, bulls would have to prove their merit in real life. That is, they’d sire 100 daughters, then when those daughters calved and began producing milk, their output was measured. The better the output, the more marketable the bull. This “progeny testing” was a valuable process, but it took several years to determine if a bull was any good.

In 2009, new technology came along: big data and genomic selection. Today, a bull’s marketability is determined by a computer. A complex algorithm analyzes the bull’s genetic makeup, taking into account the health of his offspring, their milk production, the fat and protein in the milk, and other traits, to come up with figures that rank him against other bulls. The key figure is called lifetime net merit. It represents the average amount of money a farmer can expect to earn over the offspring’s life by choosing this bull over another one.

While this allowed farmers to more efficiently evaluate animals across many key traits, the process also led to even higher rates of inbreeding. The “inbreeding coefficient” for Holsteins is currently around 8 percent, meaning an average calf gets identical copies of 8 percent of its genes from its mother and its father. That number is in comparison to a baseline of 1960 — and it continues to increase by .3 or .4 every year.

“Inbreeding is accumulating faster than it ever has,” Dechow says.

But is 8 percent too much? Dairy experts continue to debate this. Some argue that Holsteins are doing their job, producing a lot of milk, and that they’re a relatively healthy bunch. Hansen, however, notes that if you breed a bull to his daughter, the inbreeding coefficient is 25 percent; in that light, 8 seems like a lot. He and others say while inbreeding may not seem like a problem now, the consequences could be significant.

Fertility rates are affected by inbreeding, and already, Holstein fertility has dropped significantly. Pregnancy rates in the 1960s were 35 to 40 percent, but by 2000 had dropped to 24 percent. Also, when close relatives are bred, it’s more likely for cows get two copies of unwanted recessive genes, where serious health problems could be lurking.

“Something needs to change,” Hansen says.

For Dechow, the concern is the rate of increase and what that means for the future of the breed. “Imagine you’ve got a cow who has 100 really good genes and 10 really horrible genes. You eliminate that cow from your breeding program because she’s got 10 horrible genes,” he says, and “you’ve lost her 100 good ones, as well. You’re losing long-term genetic potential.”


Dechow grew up on a dairy farm, so long before he knew the ins-and-outs of the cow’s genome, he could see some of what was happening.

Holsteins look very different than they did 50 years ago. For one thing, they’ve been bred to have longer and wider udders, rather than deep ones. A deep udder can touch the ground, making it much more prone to infection or other problems, so that’s a change for the better. But other changes could be problematic. For example, modern Holsteins are bred to be tall and thin, to the point of boniness. That thinness is a byproduct of milk production, because “they’re directing the energy they consume towards milk,” Dechow says.

But it’s also something of an aesthetic choice. The ideal Holstein cow — at least in the view of people who judge these things — is “feminine and refined.” That means thin and angular. The problem is, a tall, thin cow isn’t necessarily the healthiest cow and shorter and rounder cattle are more likely to get pregnant.

“If we limit long term genetic diversity of the breed,” Dechow says, “we limit how much genetic change can be made over time.”

A few years ago, Dechow and others started to wonder, just how significant was the inbreeding and loss of diversity? In the early 50s, there were about 1,800 bulls represented in the population. They knew there were fewer today, but they had no idea how few. Dechow and his colleagues Wansheng Liu and Xiang-Peng Yue analyzed the paternal pedigree information of nearly 63,000 Holstein bulls born since the 1950s in North America.

“We were a little bit surprised when we traced the lineages and it went back to two bulls,” he says. They’re named Round Oak Rag Apple Elevation and Pawnee Farm Arlinda Chief. Each one is related to about half the bulls alive today. Essentially, Elevation and Chief outcompeted every other bull on the market. Even Select Sires, a company that is in the business of selling bull semen, was surprised by the findings. Charles Sattler, a company vice president, sees the news as a bit of a reality check, but not a cause for alarm. “Probably the biggest concern is, are there any really valuable genes we may have lost along the way that we could make use of today?” he wonders.

Not too long ago, there was another Y chromosome represented, that of Penstate Ivanhoe Star, born in the 1960s. His decline demonstrates one problem with all this inbreeding. In the 1990s, dairy farmers around the world started noticing calves being born with such serious vertebrae problems, they didn’t survive outside the womb. Around the same time, calves were being stillborn with a condition called bovine leukocyte adhesion deficiency. It turns out Star, and his prolific son, Carlin-M Ivanhoe Bell, had problematic recessive genes that didn’t come to light until a few generations of inbreeding. 

After this discovery, farmers stopped breeding cows to Star’s descendants and that problem was resolved. But could other problems be lurking within the chromosomes of our remaining Holsteins? What had been lost with all this inbreeding? These questions troubled Dechow enough that he began searching out some of those old genes.

That required digging into the archives of the National Animal Germplasm Program in Fort Collins, Colorado. It’s like a seed bank, except it collects ovarian tissue, blood, and semen from domesticated animals, and it holds about 7,000 cocktail-straw-sized semen samples from Holstein bulls.

Dechow’s team found two that weren’t related to Chief or Elevation, so they took those samples, got eggs from top-notch females, and created embryos to implant into surrogate Penn State heifers. The idea was to combine the half-century-old Y genetics with DNA from females who are among the finest examples of modern-day milk production. Over the course of 2017, the animals wound up giving birth to 15 calves, seven of them male. The oldest of these animals are about two and two now have calves of their own.

Every parameter in the development of these cattle will be measured, and their DNA is being analyzed and compared to the general population. It turns out that not a lot is known about the Y chromosome, so this is an opportunity to use this newly-introduced variation to understand it better. Semen samples were also taken from the bulls and sent to the germplasm bank in Colorado. Dechow can already see a difference on the ground in the way these cattle look. They’re a bit shorter than most Holsteins, and also heavier. They’re also a little less docile than average.

Select Sires has collected semen samples from the bulls and run them through its grading program to so-so results; they came out in the middle of the pack. They’ve offered some of these samples for sale to dairy farmers, but sales so far have been minimal. Dairy farmers today are already struggling financially, and it’s not easy to convince them there’s a benefit to getting DNA from average bulls.

Dechow is still hopeful that there will be more to gain from this research once the cattle mature.

“My pie-in-the-sky dream,” Dechow says, “is that we’ll able to show these old genetics still have something to offer.”

Source: undark.org

June 2019 Dairy Situation & Outlook

The good news is milk prices continue to improve. The Class III price which was as low as $13.89 in February will improve about $2.40 in June to around $16.30. The Class IV price which was as low as $15.48 in January will improve about $1.30 to around $16.80 in June. Much lower milk production is the driver for improved milk prices. For the U.S. compared to a year earlier, April’s milk production was up just 0.3% with May down 0.4%. Cow numbers in May were 9.333 million head, down 89,000 since January or 0.9% lower than a year ago. The continued exiting of dairy producers and the slaughter of cows running 5.0% higher than a year ago is reducing the size of the dairy herd. Milk per cow was also well below trend being up just 0.6%. Of the 24 reporting states 14 had fewer cows and 11 had lower total milk production.

In May two states lead the way in increases in milk production, Texas at 5.4% and Colorado at 3.6%. Production for other Western states were: California and Idaho up 1.3% and 1.4% respectively with production down 0.8% in New Mexico and 4.3% in Arizona. In the Northeast production was up 1.0% in New York, just 0.4% in Michigan and down 7.0% in Pennsylvania. In the Midwest production was up just 0.4% for South Dakota with production down 0.2% for both Iowa and Minnesota and 0.4% for Wisconsin. In the Southeast production was down 4.9% in Florida and 10.1% in Virginia.

Lower milk production relates to lower dairy product production. Compared to a year earlier April butter production was 4.8% lower, American cheese production 2.8% lower with cheddar 3.3% lower, total cheese production just 0.2% higher, nonfat dry milk production 2.6% lower and dry whey production 13.7% lower.

Butter and cheese sales continue to show modest growth. But, fluid (beverage) mill sales continue the downward trend with April sales 3.1% lower than a year ago and year-to-date sales 2.5% lower. While lower than a year ago, dairy exports are supportive of milk prices. With lower milk production exports do not need to be as high to support milk prices. For the first four months of the year exports on a volume basis were the third highest with 2018 being the highest and 2014 the second highest. Much lower exports to China is the major factor for reduce volume of exports. China’s retaliatory tariffs and the African swine fever resulted in April exports to China being 64% lower than a year ago. Cheese exports have held up. While April cheese exports were one percent lower than a year ago, year-to-date exports are 7% higher. April exports were down 25% for nonfat dry milk/skim milk power, 71% for butterfat and 31% for total whey products. Yet on a total solids basis exports were equivalent to 14.4% of milk production.

The stock level of dairy products is also improving. Compared to a year ago April 30thstocks were 5.4% lower for butter, just 0.3% higher for American cheese stocks and 4.0% higher for total cheese stocks. However, dry whey stocks and nonfat dry milk stocks were 8.9% and 1.6% higher.

Milk prices should improve further as we progress through the rest of the year. USDA now forecasts milk production for the year to be just 0.3% higher than 2018, the result of cow numbers averaging 0.7% lower and milk per cow 1.0% higher. It looks like feed prices will be higher. Alfalfa hay prices will be higher. Current hay stocks are tight and there are reports of significant winter kill in some areas along with a challenge of harvesting quality first cutting due to wet weather. Delayed corn planting and unplanted acres means higher corn prices. Tighter feed supplies, lower quality forages along with higher feed prices will likely continue to reduce cow numbers and dampen milk per cow this fall and winter.

Butter and cheese sales are expected to continue to show modest growth. While exports will be lower exports will still support to milk prices. It doesn’t look like the trade dispute with China will end soon. In May U.S. increased tariffs on China’s goods and China in turn increased tariffs levied on U.S. dairy products. But, in May U.S. eliminated tariffs on steel and aluminum from Mexico and Mexico in turn eliminated its tariffs on U.S, cheese. This could be positive for cheese exports later this year and going into 2020.

As of now we could see the Class III price in the low $17’s by August and in the mid to high $17’s by fourth quarter. Some are predicting Class III even in the $18’s. Class IV could be in the low $17’s by July and in the mid $17’s fourth quarter. If this holds true, Class III would average about $16.30 for the year compared to $14.61 in 2018 and the Class IV price would average about $17.00 compared to $15.09 in 2018.

 

Source: UW-Extension

China’s Dairy War Threatens to Engulf 2022 Winter Olympics

China’s biggest dairy company has warned that it may pull out of sponsoring the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing because of its local rival.

In a rare open letter posted on its official WeChat account on Thursday, Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group Co lashed out at China Mengniu Dairy Co for allegedly infringing its status as the sole sponsor of dairy products at the Beijing games.

Mengniu has supposedly signed up to be a “joint beverage global partner” of the International Olympic Committee with Coca-Cola, bypassing the local organisers and government agencies, said Yili.

Yili said in its letter that this would confuse Chinese consumers, leading them to believe that Mengniu, whose largest shareholder is Chinese food giant Cofco Corp, is also a dairy products partner of the Beijing Games.

It may quit its sponsorship altogether, and cut all ties with the Olympics after 2024, Hohhot-based Yili said. The WeChat post was later deleted from its account.

Yili and Mengniu are fierce rivals in China’s $US62 billion ($89 billion) dairy products market, which is projected to overtake the US to become the world’s biggest by 2022, according to Euromonitor International data.

The two giants, each with market share of about a fifth, are competing to secure foreign milk sources and brands as Chinese consumers spend more on premium items like organic yoghurt, ice cream and cheese.

Representatives of Mengniu, Yili and Cofco couldn’t immediately comment. A Coco-Cola representative did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Yili’s Shanghai-traded shares gained 2.7 per cent to its highest level since Feb 2018, while Mengniu’s stock ended flat after fluctuating between gains and losses on Thursday.

The Winter Games in Beijing, the capital city’s second time hosting the Olympics, will likely drive greater participation in winter sports in China and boost demand for winter athletic gear, Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Catherine Lim said in a note in March.

Besides Yili, China’s biggest sportswear maker Anta Sports Products Ltd. and lender Bank of China Ltd. are also official sponsors.

Source: Bloomberg

USDA aims to help dairy farmers with new insurance program

The number of dairy farmers across America has dwindled significantly in recent years. Low milk prices and high feed costs are the primary culprits.

Now, there’s a new United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) insurance program that promises to bring some stability. It’s called the Dairy Margin Coverage program.

The USDA Farm Service Agency hosted a meeting in Oronoco Monday to educate local dairy farmers about the program and answer any questions.

“Essentially what it is, is it’s an insurance program so producers can ensure some profitability for their dairy,” said Rich Bauer, USDA Farm Service Agency County Executive Director.

Under the 2018 Farm Bill, the USDA was able to construct the program with the goal of creating some stability for these farmers.

“We look at the national milk price is and we compare that to the feed cost of producing 100 pounds of milk,” said Bauer. “You can insure up to a $9.50 margin and whenever it gets over a $9.50 margin then we will start subsidizing that difference.”

So, if feed costs get extremely high or milk prices get extremely low in relationship to feed costs, then the USDA’s Farm Service Agency is able to step in and help.

This will replace the previous program known as the Margin Protection Program for Dairy.

“It’s similar to the last program but it’s improved,”said Bauer. “The fees are less and the coverage is more.”

Farmers across Olmsted County have been feeling the pressure to make ends meet the past few years. They know this isn’t a permanent solution, more of a temporary fix.

“It will help,” said dairy farmer Donny Thompson. “Just looking at the number, it’s not going to keep us in business but it will help.”

“I mean every little bit helps I guess,” said dairy farmer Corey Hoffman. “Like every farmer, not just dairy producers, we hope to get a decent price for our product that way we aren’t asking for a government handouts all the time.”

Farmers can participate year to year or lock in for five years.

Sign-up goes from June 17th until September 20th.

In case you missed Monday’s meeting, there will be three more this week:

Tuesday, June 18th; 1 p.m. at the Dodge County Farm Service Agency Office
Wednesday, June 19th; 1 p.m. at the Oronoco Peoples Energy Coop
Thursday, June 20th; 1 p.m. at the Dodge County Farm Service Agency Office

For more information about the Dairy Margin Coverage program, click here.

 

Source: Fox47

Milk Markets Moved Higher Wednesday in Chicago

On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange milk futures closed higher Wednesday supported by strength in cash cheese markets and a mostly favorable milk production report.  Class III milk was unchanged for June at $16.28, July gained 8 cents to $16.95 and August gained 6 cents to $17.24. Second half months were even to 8 cents higher averaging $17.24 per cwt. Jan- March of 2020 averages $16.49 per cwt. Class IV milk was not as strong. June was unchanged at $16.80, July fell 1 cent to $17 even, and August fell 4 cents to $17.24.

A strong day of trading in the CME spot product trade maintains the gains made to Class III milk made yesterday. Dry whey unchanged at $0.3425. Blocks up $0.02 at $1.80. Three trades were made ranging from $1.79 to $1.80. Barrels up $0.0450 at $1.69. Five trades were made ranging from $1.68 to $1.69. Butter up $0.0125 at $2.3750. Two trades were made at $2.3725 and $2.3750. Nonfat dry milk down $0.0050 at $1.0450. Three trades were made ranging from $1.04 to $1.450.

Grain and feed markets retracted off of their recent rallies. July corn fell 8 ¾ to $4.41 per bu., July Soybeans fell 10 ¼ to $9.03 ¼, and July SBM fell $5.10 to $316.90 per ton

Select Sires Welcomes Summer Interns

Twelve individuals will be joining North America’s largest A.I. organization as summer interns in a variety of roles and departments. The cooperative welcomes Katie Frost, Carly Olufs, Skylar Buell, Cady McGehee, Hannah Sykes, Paige Holdridge, Seth Payne, Noah Porter, Cheyenne Baldwin, Logan Bauman, Matthew Hall and Jacob Rigsby.

“Both practical work experience within the agricultural industry and networking are extremely important to help college students prepare for full-time employment beyond graduation,” says David Thorbahn, Select Sires president and C.E.O. “Select Sires offers hands-on internship opportunities to work with trained professionals each year. This program helps to expand knowledge of the industry, while allowing interns to contribute to the day-to-day operation of the Select Sires federation.”

Katie Frost is joining Select Sires as the veterinary services intern. Originally from Bloomington, Ohio, Frost graduated from The Ohio State University with a degree in animal science and is now studying at The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine. During the upcoming school year Frost will serve as secretary of the Veterinary Public Health Club. Her experience raising livestock and showing meat goats and market lambs in 4-H and FFA has amplified her interest in agriculture and is a driving force in her pursuit of a career in food animal medicine. Frost will assist with daily veterinary duties to provide for the health and welfare of livestock in order to collect a quality semen product.

Carly Olufs of Petaluma, Calif. joins Select Sires as the dairy sire marketing intern. She is set to graduate from Oklahoma State University in the spring of 2020 with a degree in animal science emphasizing business. Her dedication to the dairy industry began on her family’s ranch where she raised her own herd of show-winning Jerseys and Holsteins. Olufs’ passion for agriculture has continued throughout college with involvement in the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Ambassadors program, Dairy Science Club and the Oklahoma State dairy judging team. She will assist the marketing department with cattle photography, fitting and numerous other projects.

Skylar Buell, a native of Temperance, Mich., joins Select Sires as the corporate communications intern. Her passion for the dairy industry comes from growing up on her family’s replacement heifer operation and helping on her grandfather’s Jersey farm. Buell is a student at The Ohio State University, where she will earn her degree in agricultural communications with a minor in dairy science in 2020. She is a member of Buckeye Dairy Club and the Ohio State dairy judging team. This summer, she will design the 2020 breeding calendars and promote Select Sires as a member of the communications team.

Cady McGehee of Okeechobee, Fla. is interning in the semen processing and research department. McGehee is a student at Kaskaskia College with plans to transfer to a four-year university to study animal science and business management. McGehee has deep roots in agriculture, exhibiting multiple species of livestock in 4-H and has competed in numerous contests through Holstein Association USA and the American Guernsey Association. In the laboratory, McGehee will assist with evaluation and initial processing of semen while also working on a variety of research projects that involve processing and cryopreservation.

Hannah Sykes, from Clarksburg, Ohio, is joining Select Sires as the laboratory intern. Sykes currently attends Wilmington College and is majoring in animal science. Throughout college, she has been involved in Aggies/Collegiate 4-H and is also a member of Sigma Alpha Sorority. Growing up on a fourth generation beef operation, Sykes has had a passion for the livestock industry instilled from a young age. Sykes will assist with daily operations of the lab, initial processing of semen, data entry and extending product life.

Joining Select Sires as livestock technicians are Paige Holdridge, Seth Payne and Noah Porter. Hailing from Delta, Ohio, Holdridge currently attends The Ohio State University Agricultural Technical Institute where she is studying animal science with a dairy specialization. Payne, of Milford Center, Ohio, will be assisting at The Hoyt Center and Calf Campus this summer. Porter, of Wooster, Ohio, is currently studying animal science at The Ohio State University.

Former interns Cheyenne Baldwin, Logan Bauman, Matthew Hall and Jacob Rigsby are returning to Select Sires to work as livestock technicians. A native of Mechanicsburg, Ohio, Baldwin is currently a student at Wilmington College. Bauman, of Sterling, Ohio, is on track to graduate from The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 2021. Hall, from Powell, Ohio, currently studies at The Ohio State University. Returning for his third summer at Select Sires, Rigsby hails from Marysville, Ohio, and attends Heidelberg University. Throughout the summer, livestock technicians assist with livestock care, semen collection, barn upkeep, and assist the veterinary staff when needed.

Based in Plain City, Ohio, Select Sires Inc., is North America’s largest A.I. organization and is comprised of seven farmer-owned and -controlled cooperatives. As the industry leader, it provides highly fertile semen as well as excellence in service and programs to achieve its basic objective of supplying dairy and beef producers with North America’s best genetics at a reasonable price.

 

Source: Select Sires

What Are the Options for Non-saleable (Waste) Milk?

Photo credit: Ginger Fenton

During challenging economic times, it is difficult to consider the financial loss that occurs when milk is withheld from sale for various reasons. The need for a safe food supply at all levels has placed increased attention on agricultural production practices. Concerns regarding the potential spread of pathogens, antimicrobial resistance, and other hazards surrounding biosecurity and safe animal feeding practices have brought attention to the issue of how to handle non-saleable or waste milk.

Waste milk can be generated in several ways from the farm to the final food product including waste water, by-products from manufacturing such as whey, returned finished product, and milk considered non-saleable or that has been rejected. Waste water used for washing milking equipment and tanks, cleaning the parlor, and flushing systems on the farm usually contains milk that is diluted with water. Similarly, waste water is generated as milk is further manufactured into finished products at a processing plant.

As waste water containing milk is generated, the proportion of milk to water is important. When more organic matter, which in this case is milk, is present, the biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) is greater, which means that more oxygen is required by the bacteria that degrade the organic matter. Odors and slowed degradation result when the oxygen supply is insufficient. The BOD for milk is 5 times higher than that of manure and places greater demands on a treatment system.

Waste milk should not be dumped into drains or discharged into surface water because of the disruption it can cause to biological systems leading to potential harm to vegetation, wildlife, and fish. If milk is disposed of via a septic system, the necessary permits need to be in place. Consult your local or state regulatory agencies for the proper process and permits in your area. Other disposal options that may have a fee attached are an anaerobic digester that can accommodate food wastes, a sewage treatment plant, or a landfill.

An option for the farm, if storage space permits, is to add milk and/or milkhouse waste to the manure storage system for eventual land application. If this route is chosen, a Nutrient Management Plan or Manure Management Plan should be followed.

Many farms chose to feed their waste milk to calves. Keep in mind the reason why that milk was considered as waste milk when making the choice to feed it to calves. Proper storage and handling of waste milk are necessary if it will be fed to calves. A great deal of research surrounds this practice and is beyond the scope of this article. More information on pasteurizing and feeding non-saleable milk to calves .

Additionally, waste milk from the farm as well as milk that has been returned from commerce, for example milk that is near the sell-by date, may be considered as a feed source for other livestock species. This may be of particular interest to producers with pigs; however, additional state regulations may apply when determining what is acceptable to feed to other livestock, especially swine, or what is considered as “garbage.” Here are some questions to consider when determining whether waste milk or other food processing residue is suitable as animal feed (Food Processing Residual Management Manual 2001).

  • Is the food product free of physical hazards such as glass, metal, or plastic that could injure an animal consuming it?
  • Is the product free of chemical or microbiological hazards that could cause illness or injury to the animal?
  • Is the quantity and quality consistent to allow incorporation into the animal’s diet with minimal disruptions?
  • Is there enough of the milk or product to pursue it as a feed option?
  • Will the product provide a desirable energy or protein source when incorporated into the diet?
  • Is it palatable or likely to be consumed by the animal?
  • Are there practical options for handling and storage until it is fed?
  • What is the biosecurity risk that may accompany the feeding of waste milk or other food processing residual? Can that product lead to the spread of disease?

While maximizing the value of your milk is critical during challenging economic times, careful consideration should be taken on the true value of repurposing waste milk. Taking the time to evaluate waste milk as a product can assist you in making the best choice for use or disposal.

Source: extension.psu.edu

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