News – Page 2

Low New Zealand production boosts milk price forecast

Westpac has upgraded its 2021-22 farm-gate milk price forecast by 75c to $8.50, citing the significant downgrade to its production forecast for the season.

If achieved, that would be a record high, surpassing the previous record of $8.40 set in 2013-14, senior agri-economist Nathan Penny said in the bank’s latest update.

The bank previously expected production to lift by 1% but it now expected it to fall by 1% compared to last season. It had started the season ‘‘on the back foot’’ and winter and spring had been either wet or cold or both in many parts of the country.

Production for the first three months of the season was running 1.8% behind the same stage of last season and that production softness was expected to continue in the short-term.

‘‘Most of the weakness to date was concentrated in August, which came in 4.2% below August 2020. Anecdotes also suggest that September will be similarly weak.

‘‘With the first four months of the year accounting for around 20% of the season’s production, it will be very difficult for production to be made up later,’’ he said.

Dairy production elsewhere was also soft. Weather had affected European production which, for the first seven months of the year, was down 0.1% compared to the same time a year ago. Chinese and United States production continued to be constrained by very high feed costs and limited feed availability.

Recent auction results also reflected the slowdown in global dairy production. Overall and wholemilk powder auction prices had lifted by about 5% since August.

In this week’s GlobalDairyTrade auction, prices were largely unchanged. Whole milk powder prices fell 0.4% while overall prices were flat. The result was weaker than expectations. Futures market pricing was signalling a WMP price lift of 2%.

ASB has retained its $8.20 Fonterra milk price for the season. Economist Nathaniel Keall said farmers could be confident of a farm-gate milk price above the $7.54 they received last season.


China’s Energy Crisis Is Hitting Everything From iPhones To Milk

Economists have already warned of slower growth in China.

The hit from China’s energy crunch is starting to ripple throughout the globe, hurting everyone from Toyota Motor Corp. to Australian sheep farmers and makers of cardboard boxes.

Not only is the extreme electricity shortage in the world’s largest exporter set to hurt its own growth, the knock-on impact to supply chains could crimp a global economy struggling to emerge from the pandemic.

The timing couldn’t be worse, with the shipping industry already facing congested supply lines that are delaying deliveries of clothes and toys for the year-end holidays. It also comes just as China starts its harvest season, raising concerns over sharply higher grocery bills.

“If the electricity shortages and production cuts continue, they could become yet another factor causing global supply-side problems, especially if they start to affect the production of export products,” said Louis Kuijs, senior Asia economist at Oxford Economics. 

Slower Growth

Economists have already warned of slower growth in China. At Citigroup, a vulnerability index indicates that exporters of manufactured goods and commodities are particularly at risk to a weakening Chinese economy. Neighbors like Taiwan and Korea are sensitive, as are metal exporters such as Australia and Chile, and key trading partners such as Germany are also somewhat exposed.

As for consumers, the question is whether manufacturers will be able to absorb higher costs or will pass them along.

“This is looking like another stagflationary shock for manufacturing, not just for China but for the world,” said Craig Botham, chief China economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics. “The price increases by now are pretty broad-based — a consequence of China’s deep involvement in global supply chains.”

Beijing has been scouring for power supplies as it tries to stabilize the situation. The impact on the global economy will depend on how quickly those efforts bear fruit. Many Chinese factories reduced production for this week’s “Golden Week” holiday, and economists are closely watching whether power shortages will return as they ramp up again. 

Already, though, some industries are under pressure, and the damage they’re seeing could quickly fan out to other sectors.


Consider paper. Production of cardboard boxes and packing materials was already strained by skyrocketing demand during the pandemic. Now, temporary shutdowns in China have hit output even harder, leading to a possible 10% to 15% reduction in supply for September and October, according to Rabobank. That will add further complications to businesses already suffering from the global paper shortage.


Food Inflation Heats Up and Energy Crisis May Make It Worse

The food supply chain is also at risk as the energy crisis makes harvest season more challenging for the world’s biggest agricultural producer. Global food prices have already jumped to a decade high, and worries are mounting that the situation will worsen as China struggles to handle crops from corn to soy to peanuts and cotton.

In recent weeks, several plants were forced to shut or reduce output to conserve electricity, such as soybean processors that crush beans to produce meal for animal feed and oil for cooking. Prices for fertilizer, one of the most important elements of agriculture, are skyrocketing, slamming farmers already buckling under the strain of rising costs.

The processing industry is set to be more severely affected than staples such as grains and meat, Rabobank analysts wrote in a report this week. In the dairy sector, power cuts could disrupt the operation of milking machines, while pork suppliers will face pressure from tighter supply of cold storage. 


Farmers in Australia, which supply about 90% of the world’s apparel wool, have struggled during the Covid-19 lockdown as global apparel factories and retailers shutter.

Outside of China, Australian sheep farmers are bracing for weaker demand just as they seek to sell their wool at auctions. The industry saw Chinese mills reduce production by up to 40% due to power cuts last week, Australian Broadcasting Corp. reported.


The tech world could also see a dramatic hit, given that China is the world’s biggest production base for gadgets from iPhones to gaming consoles, and a major center for the packaging of semiconductors used in autos and appliances.

Several companies have already experienced downtime at their Chinese facilities to comply with local restrictions. Pegatron Corp., a key partner for Apple, said last month it began to adopt energy-saving measures, while ASE Technology Holding Co., the world’s biggest chip packager, halted production for several days.

The overall impact on the tech sector has so far been limited because of customary shutdowns around the week-long holiday. Should the energy crunch worsen, it could hit production ahead of the crucial year-end shopping season. Industry giants including Dell Technologies Inc. and Sony Group Corp. can ill afford another supply shock after pandemic-induced turmoil fomented a global chip shortage that will extend well into 2022 and beyond.


Any further deterioration of the semiconductor market would also add headaches for automakers, who have already seen production crunched by the chip shortage. The industry, which is high on the list of protected sectors in times like these, has thus far largely been spared from the effects of the power crisis.

Still, there have been some isolated instances. Toyota, which produces more than 1 million vehicles a year in China at plants centered around Tianjin and Guangzhou, has said some of its operations have been impacted by the power shortages.


New research on persistence of highly contagious FMD

A major new study, featured on the cover of Science Magazine, undertaken by scientists at The Pirbright Institute, Oregon State University, Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute and SANParks, Veterinary Wildlife Services, Kruger National Park explores the mechanisms at play that enable the persistence of highly infectious pathogens in their host populations, a major problem in endemic disease ecology.

The research focused on highly contagious foot-and-mouth disease viruses (FMDV) persistence in their wildlife reservoir, African buffalo. Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is endemic in many low-middle income countries creating an economic burden and threatening food security. FMD does not cause disease in buffalo, but in cloven-footed animals like cattle it causes painful blisters on the mouth and feet resulting in weight loss and reduction in milk yield.

To solve the puzzle of how some contagious diseases are able to persist and continue circulating in a population long after an initial outbreak when the disease first burns through a pool of susceptible hosts, scientists set up experiments in the field to investigate the transmission of three main strains of FMDV (SAT1, SAT2 and SAT3) in buffalo herds in South Africa’s Kruger National Park. Researchers sampled blood and tissue from a wild herd at two monthly intervals over a period of three years to test for FMDV while simultaneously recording infection dynamics in a captive group of experimentally infected buffalo over a six month period.


Taking samples from buffalo in the field © The Pirbright Institute

The aim was to work out what the virus was doing in between outbreaks and how it was able to maintain itself in a population once the initial ‘wildfire’ infection was over. FMDV is extremely contagious and able to infect entire buffalo populations in areas where it is circulating, providing some level of immunity in young animals. This immunity wanes considerably at around 4-6 months of age when young calves lose their maternally-derived antibodies making them susceptible to infection. The researchers therefore focused on this primary path of transmission in the study as well as investigating a second transmission route via carrier animals, which was thought to be a less effective transmission route but a potential factor in preventing FMDV fade out between successive calving seasons.

The experimental challenge study was designed to measure the epidemiological parameters for FMDV transmission in buffalo during primary (acute) infection and from carrier hosts for each of the three strains. To assess primary transmission four naïve buffalo were allowed contact with four animals experimentally infected with one of the three FMDV strains being tested, a total of 12 naïve and 12 infected animals which were observed over 30 days. In the carrier buffalo study, transmission was assessed by monitoring two groups of buffalo, each group containing two carriers for each strain (6 buffalo) along with 6 naïve buffalo.

In the primary transmission group all naïve animals became infected and became carriers. Unlike previous studies the researchers were able to show that carrier transmission does occur, but at a rate that was considerably lower than in primary infection. Importantly, both the direct and carrier transmission rates differed amongst the three strains.

Based on the results of the experiments, scientists used mathematical models to establish that none of the strains would be able to persist in populations from one birthing season to another if the buffalo didn’t become carriers and therefore ‘childhood infection’ alone is not sufficient to explain how the virus becomes endemic. However, when carrier transmission was included in the models, SAT 1 and SAT 3 were able to persist in buffalo, even in small populations of around 2000 animals. Conversely, although SAT 2 spreads efficiently in acute infections, it performs less well in carrier transmission and was not able to persist in small populations.

This research was supported by multiple grants from USDA-NIFA AFRI, the UK Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council as part of the joint USDA-NSF-NIHBBSRC Ecology and Evolution of Infectious Diseases program and UK Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.


$10M announced to support algae-feed research for US Dairy

A new $10 million grant will bolster research into algae-based feed supplements that could increase environmental sustainability in the dairy industry while improving milk production. The five-year grant from USDA Sustainable Agriculture Systems Program will support a research team, led by Nichole Price with Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences and Colby College, as it tests algal feed additives and assess the product’s impact on animals, farms, communities, and the planet.

As the Earth warms and its population grows, pressure is mounting to optimize our food production and decrease its impact on the planet. Milk production in the United States has quadrupled in the past century, and the demand for dairy continues to grow globally. These new funds will support research into algae-based feed supplements that aim to balance quality milk production with environmental, economic, and social sustainability.

“This grant allows us to bring together a multidisciplinary team of world-class experts in their fields,” said Price, the project director. “This is a team that has already been working well together for several years on finding pointed solutions for sustainability within the cattle industry. Now, we can expand our scope and work together on a whole-systems approach to sustainably enhance U.S. milk production.”

Price is a senior research scientist at Bigelow Laboratory and holds a research faculty appointment at Colby College. This is the largest government-funded research grant in the college’s history. The project team includes researchers from Syracuse University, University of New Hampshire, University of Vermont, Clarkson University, and William H. Miner Agricultural Research Institute. The collaboration will also support substantial teaching and extension projects.

Recent research has shown that certain algae-based feed additives reduce cows’ methane-emitting burps, and can be produced with a lower carbon footprint than land crops. They also allow for increased potential to recycle and recapture nutrients in the feed production process. Further studies show that microscopic algae can offer similar benefits, and could provide a scalable solution for farms of all sizes.

To turn these scientific findings into an economic opportunity, a team of economists and other social scientists will look at how to integrate the product into the supply chain, make it profitable for each stakeholder, and foster its adoption through community outreach and decision-making tools.

“The supplement may work perfectly, but it can only be a real solution if supply chain actors will buy it and farmers adopt it,” said University of Vermont Professor of Community Development and Applied Economics David Conner, a collaborator on the project. “In order to succeed, we have to make sure the entire process is economically resilient and can survive market shocks, support dairy production, and promote a healthy agricultural economy.”

Feed trials will investigate the impact of algal ingredients on an array of cows and farms. By testing supplements with feeds available in different geographic areas, researchers can develop a nutritious additive that is widely applicable and more impactful. In conjunction, the researchers will also evaluate the supplement’s impact on the cows’ wellbeing.

“Animal welfare holds an important place in animal agriculture. Farmers care a lot about their cows and the health of their animals directly relates to their productivity,” said Research Scientist Sarah Morrison, a collaborator at William H. Miner Agricultural Research Institute. “We need to ensure that the supplements we develop do not have a negative effect on the cows and, in turn, the farm’s success. The goal of this project is to develop a sustainable and effective product, while hopefully even improving cows’ welfare.”

The team will also be looking at how the new supplement impacts greenhouse gas emissions at each stage of production and distribution, ensuring a whole-systems understanding of its impact on the industry’s carbon footprint. These life cycle assessments will enable the researchers to seek the best balance of greenhouse gas emissions with milk yield and quality.

“To find a real solution, the process has to be assessed economically and environmentally at every step along the way,” said Bigelow Laboratory Senior Research Scientist Steve Archer, a co-lead on the project. “We’re striving to develop products that are a benefit to industry and the planet, it’s essential that those two criteria go hand in hand.”

Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences is an independent, nonprofit research institute located in East Boothbay, Maine. From the Arctic to the Antarctic, Bigelow Laboratory scientists use innovative approaches to study the foundation of global ocean health and unlock its potential to improve the future for all life on the planet. Learn more at, and join the conversation on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.

Top Dairy Industry News Stories from October 2nd to 8th 2021

Top News Stories of the Week:

2021 World Dairy Expo Show Summary

World Dairy Expo 2021 came to a close on Saturday, October 2, after returning to Madison, Wisconsin to once again host the global dairy industry. Throughout the week the dairy industry competed against, learned from and reconnected with each other as we came together to move our industry forward. Now that the title of Supreme Champion has been bestowed again and companies have spent the week introducing new products, innovations and brands, it is my privilege to present the 2021 Show Summary.

If you are looking for press releases from this past week, they are available here while photos of our champions can be found here.

On behalf of the staff at World Dairy Expo, I would like to thank each of you for your help in making the 54th event as successful as the 53 shows before it. We look forward to seeing you back in Madison, Sunday, October 2 through Friday, October 7, for World Dairy Expo 2022, “Essential Elements.”

Provided by Katie Schmitt, Communications Manager at the World Dairy Expo

U.S. Dairy Industry Publishes Biennial Sustainability Report

The Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy released its biennial 2020 U.S. Dairy Sustainability Report inclusive of progress made in 2019 and 2020 within environmental stewardship and broader social responsibility commitments to people, animals and communities.

The report provides a transparent accounting of the progress and impact that the dairy community has made against the U.S. Dairy Stewardship Commitment since its launch in 2018. Those dairy companies and processors that have voluntarily signed onto the Stewardship Commitment represent 75 percent of U.S. milk production* and are dedicated to nourishing a growing global population with responsibly produced dairy foods and beverages.  

“The U.S. dairy industry has continued to prioritize social responsibility, helping people and communities thrive, while advancing sustainable practices and becoming an environmental solution,” said Lisa Watson, Social Responsibility Officer, Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy. “It’s the result of cross sector collaboration among dairy farmers, companies and other key stakeholders working together to address complex sustainability challenges and accelerate positive change.”

In 2020, the U.S. dairy industry experienced significant disruptions to their individual businesses, dairy farms, cooperatives and companies brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the challenges, the Report shows the progress the dairy industry made by collectively standing by its social responsibility commitments.

Key highlights include the following:

  • More than 95 percent of resources from processors was recovered, redirected and put to beneficial use such as donated to feed hungry people, repurposed for industry purposes and to feed animals and sent to composts (vs. sent to landfill).
  • U.S. dairy provided 1.538 billion servings of nutritious milk, cheese and yogurt in 2020 to food banks in the Feeding America network, a 33 percent increase over 2019 and a 107 percent increase since 2016.
  • The dairy industry supported 3.3 million jobs in the U.S. and contributed $752.93B in total economic impact.
  • By making use of the water present in milk, U.S. dairy processors were net positive for water, returning more than they withdrew from municipal and other sources.
  • The U.S. Dairy Net Zero Initiative was launched as an industry-wide effort to make sustainable practices and technologies more accessible and affordable for dairy farms of all sizes and included initial corporate partnerships with Nestlé and Starbucks.

A first for U.S. dairy, the Report also incorporates nationally-aggregated processor data against Stewardship Commitment metrics. Dairy processors developed and provide ongoing support for a reporting tool to serve as a credible and consistent way to calculate and track processor sustainability progress. Aggregations on GHG and water intensity, as well as other sustainability metrics, will serve as a baseline for future reporting.

For information about the industry’s sustainability work and the dairy checkoff, visit

*At the close of the 2020 Sustainability Report reporting period (December 31, 2020), the Stewardship Commitment represented 74% of U.S. milk production.

# # #

About the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy and U.S. Dairy Stewardship Commitment
The Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy® is a leadership forum that brings together the dairy community and third parties to address the changing needs and expectations of consumers and customers. Initiated in 2008 by dairy farmers through the dairy checkoff, Innovation Center leaders and members collaborate on important areas like the environment, nutrition and health, animal care, food safety, and community contributions. Through the Innovation Center, the U.S. dairy community demonstrates its commitment to continuous improvement from farm to table, striving to ensure a socially responsible and economically viable dairy community. For more information, visit

Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy logo

Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy

The Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy® is a leadership forum that brings together the dairy community and third parties to address the changing needs and expectations of consumers and customers. Initiated in 2008 by dairy farmers through the dairy checkoff, Innovation Center leaders and members collaborate on important areas like the environment, nutrition and health, animal care, food safety, and community contributions. Through the Innovation Center, the U.S. dairy community demonstrates its commitment to continuous improvement from farm to table, striving to ensure a socially responsible and economically viable dairy community.

More from Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy

World Dairy Expo Sees Drop in Attendance This Year

As expected, attendance was off a bit at World Dairy Expo in Madison last week compared to prior years. Organizers of the dairy and tradeshow say over 48,500 people from 48 countries came through the gates during the five day event at the Alliant Energy Center. That was about a third less than the total count back in 2019 before the pandemic. Visitors from Mexico, Colombia, Canada, Pakistan and Venezuela represented the top nations with the most attendees, respectively.

This year, over 660 companies featured their products and services in the trade show areas.

In the dairy barns, 1,566 exhibitors from 32 states and five Canadian provinces checked in 2,306 head of dairy cattle this year. The Supreme Champion animal of the competition was a ‘Erbacres Snapple Shakira-ET,’ a Holstein cow exhibited by Ty-D Holsteins of Quebec, Canada. A Wisconsin Red & White cow, ‘Scenic-Edge Jordan-Red,’ exhibited by Jacey & Hadley Ross of Delavan, was crowned Supreme Champion of the Junior Show.

In the dairy breed sales, the highest lot was found in the World Classic Holstein Sale, which went for $220,000. Over $2.16 million in cattle were sold during that auction, with prices averaging over $44,200 per head.

And at the 2021 Champion Dairy Product Contest Auction, 30 lots sold for a total of $36,817.

Meanwhile, show coordinators say plans are already underway for next year’s event, in which the daily schedule is being bumped up by one day. The dairy cattle show will begin on Monday, with the trade show kicking off on Tuesday and only lasting four days. The entire event will be held between October 2-7, 2022.


High Ranking TPI® Genomic Young Bulls – October 2021

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HO840003236339639DENOVO 30037 ABNER-ETABS21089.754125314782.746.
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HO840003236793007OCD LOBSTER-ETSemex210810.352107251762.726.
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HO840003232439532BLUMENFELD DRIVE 7878-ETSelect210810.855112281782.706.
HO840003238258438DENOVO 18407ABS210810.460121321782.865.
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HO840003229908349PEAK 63829-ETPEAK21089.867108286752.815.
HO840003236650967WINSTAR THUNDER-ETABS210610.264131342782.895.32.51.7-1.00.370.740.74-1.92762.05.23008
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HO840003236651081WINSTAR TENNESSEE 3681-ETABS21079.942113287782.658.
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HO840003238422870BOMAZ TABALOO-ETABS210710.860109297782.826.
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HO840003239126409LA-CA-DE-LE BRAVE 9475-ETSemex210810.771108289762.765.31.23.9-0.71.311.55-0.210.38742.55.43003
HO840003239751629WITTENBERG 501Select210810.345115269782.626.
HO840003236339636DENOVO 30034ABS210810.649116280782.755.01.36.3-0.21.481.670.67-1.02762.34.53002
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HO840003238258470DENOVO 18439ABS210810.561119312782.955.
HO840003238808316PEAK 329-ETPEAK210810.164100251752.884.4-0.33.7-0.22.322.090.620.85732.74.63001
HO840003229908360PEAK 63840-ETPEAK210810.666123316752.795.72.65.9-
HO840003231545401PINE-TREE 7829 OUTCO 283-ETHO210911.161108283792.925.
HO840003235933000PEAK 84551-ETPEAK210810.362133308752.983.51.84.2-0.91.440.840.260.33732.34.32999
HO840003235933007PEAK 84558-ETPEAK210810.86598266752.746.
HO840003236692453PEAK 32326-ETPEAK21089.757103253752.696.
HO840003204327107WITTENBERG 500Select21089.950106264792.556.
HO840003235933006PEAK 84557-ETPEAK210810.367103270752.904.81.25.2-0.41.741.600.560.17731.95.32996
HO840003236793072OCD 66393Select210910.463106259782.686.32.35.3-0.11.770.820.390.35763.05.62996
HO840003236792999OCD 66320Select210810.153121270782.815.
HO840003236792998OCD 66319Select210811.061113284782.914.1-0.41.0-
HO840003238827437PEAK 2419-ETPEAK21099.657107273752.725.93.06.2-
HO840003240484764PEAK 10014-ETPEAK21089.96693253752.726.
HO840003235932953PEAK 84504-ETPEAK210810.76194252752.666.
HO840003235933052PEAK 84603-ETPEAK210910.463126305752.925.02.65.3-0.90.930.810.13-0.01731.44.42992
HO840003231545374PINE-TREE 7829 TENNE 256-ETABS210810.952118286792.885.
HO840003235932972PEAK 84523-ETPEAK210810.24993235752.687.
HO840003235933040PEAK 84591-ETPEAK210810.863128318753.
HO840003238168692OCD 56396Select21089.85592253782.736.
HO840003241466177SSI-DUCKETT 3176Select210810.23679208782.598.
HO840003228657629OCD 94715Select210810.14089207782.617.
HO840003228657633OCD PAYLOAD FAVOR-ETSelect210810.459106277782.796.
HO840003235933013PEAK 84564-ETPEAK210810.264109272752.834.
HO840003236651078WINSTAR GAMEDAY 3678-ETSelect210810.356113290782.696.
HO840003238997227LADYS-MANOR 1243Select210810.354109283792.557.
HO840003239712515BOMAZ 361Select210910.251111264782.725.
HO840003240482090PEAK 40010-ETPEAK210810.570115305752.815.
HO840003241466228SSI-DUCKETT 3227Select21099.95394244782.756.
HO840003210724006EILDON-TWEED AHEAD WOOD-ETSemex21029.859110284762.744.80.95.7-0.91.491.900.65-0.25743.06.42989
HO840003229908340Z-HAPPY 63820-ETPEAK210810.357101261752.905.
HO840003236793065OCD 66386Select21099.94196229782.766.
HO840003241466137SSI-DUCKETT 3136Select210810.155113293782.757.
HO840003241466171SSI-DUCKETT 3170Select210810.34187209782.627.
HO840003236454988TERRA-LINDA DELUXE 11288-ETHO210810.559135291782.944.
HO840003130790413PENN-ENGLAND LEENA 1725A-ETSelect210710.35688241782.707.
HO840003241466159SSI-DUCKETT 3158Select210810.45584212782.597.
HO840003217141057CHERRYPENCOL G 995-ETSelect210810.544101252782.675.
HO840003229343794WELCOME 4870Select210811.15388242782.626.
HO840003229343815WELCOME 4891Select210810.13874170782.705.
HO840003236454914TERRA-LINDA GAMEDAY 1121-ETHO21069.944105245782.646.
HO840003236692370PEAK 32243-ETPEAK210510.445109248752.816.
HO840003235932962PEAK 84513-ETPEAK210810.860105252752.734.
HO840003235933070PEAK 84621-ETPEAK210910.368101262752.824.81.73.8-0.11.401.280.500.71732.24.72981
HO840003236692464PEAK 32337-ETPEAK210810.262103270752.746.
HO840003231444509SSI-AURORA 4821Select21089.54089215792.498.03.311.91.90.961.260.55-0.67761.54.42980
HO840003241466107SSI-DUCKETT 3106Select210810.747110257782.745.
HO840003230986088DENOVO 18153ABS210510.257111265782.854.
HO840003235933061PROGENESIS 84612-ETPEAK210910.958103258752.926.
HO840003236792997OCD 66318Select210810.357105269782.875.
HO840003210724054EILDON-TWEED REGA MINUET-ETSelect210810.949102241782.665.80.87.6-0.51.842.510.42-0.52772.66.52978
HO840003238258472DENOVO 18441ABS210810.749122299782.725.12.05.5-
HO840003241466134SSI-DUCKETT 3133Select210810.35297258782.737.
HO840003238258446DENOVO 18415ABS210810.956113318782.675.71.05.8-0.60.981.100.15-2.50762.54.82976
HO840003239527106TTM DELUXE ANGLE-ETHO21089.352102222792.725.
HO840003241466087SSI-DUCKETT 3086Select21089.74997217782.814.
HO840003210724048EILDON-TWEED REGAL MINE-ETSelect210711.14293242782.627.
HO840003236263148PINE-TREE 8418 LIFT 6188-ETHO210810.15874228782.807.
HO840003238827424PEAK 2406-ETPEAK210810.058102257752.695.
HO840003238258447DENOVO 18416ABS210810.655113299782.905.02.43.8-
HO840003240482096PEAK 40016-ETPEAK210810.36499265752.846.
HO840003240484763PEAK DEALBREAK-P-ETPEAK210810.158117280782.865.
HO840003236692465PEAK 32338-ETPEAK210810.966121294752.914.41.53.5-
HO840003236692474DYKSTRA 32347-ETPEAK21089.954118264762.684.
HO840003235932956PEAK 84507-ETPEAK210810.363106307752.736.40.64.7-0.10.451.020.09-1.57731.83.92972
HO840003238827431PEAK 2413-ETPEAK210810.955101246752.676.
HO840003239712517BOMAZ 363Select210910.95093229782.687.
HO840003232439569BLUMENFELD PAYLOAD 7915-ETSelect210810.76293272782.736.71.56.2-
HO840003235932790PEAK 84341-ETPEAK210710.95393224762.805.
HO840003236692462PEAK 32335-ETPEAK210810.45392255762.786.
HO840003241466206SSI-DUCKETT 3205Select210810.15094263782.647.
HO840003224013311HIGHER RANSOM DELUXE 11989 ETGenVis21089.943101232782.615.
HO840003224928459PEAK 3278-ETPEAK210810.36691255752.695.2-
HO840003229908344PEAK 63824-ETPEAK210810.559102277752.726.
HO840003236651089WINSTAR 3689Select21089.86196282782.745.
HO840003236454985TERRA-LINDA WHEELHOUSE 1-ETPEAK210810.061100289762.696.
HO840003224928463PEAK 3282-ETPEAK210810.06682261752.746.
HO840003228657653OCD 94739Select210810.75273214782.707.
HO840003147135997PINE-TREE 308 DOBBIN 747-ETSelect210810.045125258782.674.
HO840003224337574JOOK AHEAD 1788-ETHO21089.54798220782.765.
HO840003238258419DENOVO 18388ABS210810.956122299782.843.92.45.1-0.30.940.90-0.20-0.74761.43.42965
HO840003224437628KINGS-RANSOM E DOITSelect210810.56985282782.827.
HO840003232439579BLUMENFELD PAYLOAD 7925-ETSelect21099.96699294782.896.02.44.5-
HO840003241466182SSI-DUCKETT 3181Select21089.94098229782.715.
HO840003241466187SSI-DUCKETT 3186Select21089.94686199782.547.13.910.51.21.591.230.850.54772.75.12964
HO840003236692466PEAK 32339-ETPEAK210810.557108284752.676.
HO840003238258432DENOVO 18401ABS21089.942117272782.566.
HO840003224239432KINGR 642Select210810.232105244782.676.
HO840003231545391PINE-TREE 7829 PLINK 273-ETPEAK210811.464105275772.835.
HO840003235932877PEAK 84428-ETPEAK210810.558100247752.685.
HO840003238168612OCD ENTICE MUDHONEY-ETSelect210810.42995212782.817.
HO840003238827448PEAK 2430-ETPEAK210910.37295270752.895.
HO840003241466079SSI-DUCKETT 3078Select210810.347130290782.945.
HO840003241466190SSI-DUCKETT 3189Select21089.961104272782.834.6-
HO840003229908367PEAK 63847-ETPEAK21099.868115303752.854.
HO840003238258461DENOVO 18430ABS210810.350106253782.627.
HO840003238827435PEAK 2417-ETPEAK210810.76197267752.805.
HO840003240482093PEAK 40013-ETPEAK210810.279103298752.635.9-0.34.5-0.70.370.57-0.110.30731.74.92961
HO840003241466146SSI-DUCKETT 3145Select210810.44386216782.607.
HO840003232439574BLUMENFELD DRIVE 7920-ETSelect210810.65793259782.896.
HO840003229908372PEAK 63852-ETPEAK210910.66284243752.987.
HO840003235932966PEAK 84517-ETPEAK210810.95680221752.796.
HO840003236263127PINE-TREE 7826 ZAZL 6167-ETPEAK210711.154116278772.873.81.93.7-0.31.461.080.62-0.75751.54.12958
HO840003238258424DENOVO 18393ABS210810.742103237782.597.
HO840003241466123SSI-DUCKETT 3122Select210810.83080181782.459.
HO840003221186416PEAK 135561-ETPEAK210810.65197243752.726.
HO840003229908373PEAK 63853-ETPEAK210910.16797293752.855.
HO840003230986101DENOVO 18166ABS210510.642101232782.696.
HO840003239712499BOMAZ 345Select21089.966111269792.785.
HO840003241466092SSI-DUCKETT 3091Select21089.554108278782.845.51.13.6-0.31.351.150.87-1.01762.13.52957
HO840003241466113SSI-DUCKETT 3112Select210810.74389210782.528.
HO840003229908561VANDEN-BERGE 2118-ETPEAK210810.44283189782.823.0-
HO840003236793058OCD 66379Select210810.252106267782.756.
HO840003237169395DENOVO 4104ABS210810.255105280782.746.83.54.8-0.20.511.270.40-1.09752.15.32956
HO840003130790431PENN-ENGLAND LEHIGH1743A-ETSelect210910.35179210782.537.
HO840003210724050EILDON-TWEED GAMED MINCE-ETSelect210810.645108259782.606.52.210.4-
HO840003231712078OCD 65680Select210810.841106236782.665.
HO840003232439571BLUMENFELD PAYLOAD 7917-ETSelect210810.36584249782.876.
HO840003238827445PEAK 2427-ETPEAK210910.57098279752.835.
HO840003210724052EILDON-TWEED GAM MINERAL-ETSelect210811.04398220782.567.02.910.61.00.961.68-0.09-0.09772.45.62954
HO840003228657678OCD 94764Select210810.352101260782.835.
HO840003204327105WITTENBERG 498Select210810.34997237782.666.
HO840003227859460PEN-COL G 6277-ETSelect210711.03291223782.727.
HO840003239712505BOMAZ 351Select21089.955108281782.844.
HO840003221097129MAPLEHURST 5752Select21079.742115272782.775.
HO840003232439529BLUMENFELD DRIVE 7875-ETSelect210810.94988247782.527.
HO840003234522552DENOVO 2552ABS21089.954125283782.883.
HO840003235933023PEAK 84574-ETPEAK210810.47187255752.815.
HO840003239752930MELARRY 4457Select210810.272107303782.924.40.01.5-
HO840003231712136OCD 65738Select210810.157110278782.785.
HO840003241466165SSI-DUCKETT 3164Select210810.43395188782.726.
HO840003241466166SSI-DUCKETT 3165Select210810.43395188782.726.
HO840003232439527BLUMENFELD DRIVE 7873-ETSelect210810.75398251782.656.
HO840003235933055PEAK 84606-ETPEAK210910.561102267752.685.
HO840003236793049OCD 66370Select210810.65788242782.737.
HO840003224928457PEAK 3276-ETPEAK210810.783115334752.913.9-1.31.3-0.40.480.58-0.85-0.49732.55.72948
HO840003238258421DENOVO 18390ABS210810.658127308782.853.40.75.2-1.91.641.110.35-0.68762.85.42948
HO840003238258463DENOVO 18432ABS210810.851108248782.784.
HO840003229343822WELCOME 4898Select210910.757101273782.835.
HO840003234731893T-SPRUCE REGAL 1908-ETSelect210810.54097239782.727.
HO840003234731912T-SPRUCE NEWMAN 1927-ETSelect210810.93989214782.477.94.610.71.80.640.960.76-0.46762.85.12947
HO840003235932949PEAK 84500-ETPEAK210810.061101254752.765.
HO840003238208079CHERRYPENCOL GD LAT 599-ETSelect21089.83585206782.567.
HO840003236692482PEAK 32355-ETPEAK21099.85799270752.706.
HO840003238258420DENOVO 18389ABS210810.954110293782.825.73.37.4-0.70.850.870.56-1.08762.24.22946
HO840003239751630WITTENBERG 502Select210810.17396272782.994.2-
HO840003130790432PENN-ENGLAND LEHIGH1744A-ETSelect21099.85388240782.655.
HO840003241466169SSI-DUCKETT 3168Select210810.24996237782.774.
HO840003229908579PEAK 2136-ETPEAK210810.06793261752.924.30.03.6-0.71.741.800.941.07732.35.12944
HO840003236792986OCD 66307Select210810.07493274782.935.
HO840003237169393DENOVO 4102ABS210810.43298223782.606.
HO840003238258430DENOVO 18399ABS210810.641117261782.675.
HO840003241466110SSI-DUCKETT 3109Select210810.34485201782.656.
HO840003229343814WELCOME 4890Select210810.659103264792.755.
HO840003238258466DENOVO 18435ABS210810.636115244782.725.
HO840003230986153DENOVO 18218ABS21089.951104277782.786.
HO840003231725230SANDY-VALLEY 4779Select210810.553117288782.855.10.74.4-
HO840003234731905T-SPRUCE REGAL 1920-ETSelect210810.551102262782.766.
HO840003238258425DENOVO 18394ABS210810.757112283782.745.53.97.3-0.10.350.77-0.23-0.37762.44.92942
HO840003213323901PLAIN-KNOLL 11194Select21089.55788215782.655.71.96.1-0.11.661.711.050.79772.66.22941
HO840003224337469JOOK AHEAD 1683-ETHO21079.743110250782.636.
HO840003228764232IDEAL 90548Select210810.749109257782.865.11.37.4-0.51.681.530.820.22763.25.42941
HO840003238258443DENOVO 18412ABS210811.257107268782.665.92.38.3-0.10.640.690.12-0.36752.14.62941
HO840003229343820WELCOME 4896Select210810.246125274782.853.8-0.13.5-0.21.381.251.04-0.37763.55.62940
HO840003242205919BOMAZ 3312Select21089.950120293782.874.
HO840003229343800WELCOME 4876Select210811.16181256782.796.
HO840003234522550DENOVO 2550ABS210810.254123295792.884.81.72.9-0.50.880.790.53-0.96762.25.22939
HO840003238258389DENOVO 18358ABS210710.152127318782.944.
HO840003238258458DENOVO 18427ABS210811.060117286782.814.40.64.0-0.60.911.37-0.23-0.26752.35.92939
HO840003130790422PENN-ENGLAND BARB 1734A-ETSelect210810.35985230782.795.
HO840003130790433PENN-ENGLAND LEHIGH1745A-ETSelect210910.85976233782.626.
HO840003231545365PINE-TREE 7593 OUTCO 247-ETHO210810.449123298802.804.12.46.0-0.50.321.010.53-1.29782.04.02938
HO840003235932977PEAK 84528-ETPEAK210810.15597254752.795.
HO840003237169383DENOVO 4092ABS210810.45698248782.746.
HO840003237169384DENOVO 4093ABS21089.746112276782.736.
HO840003238258429DENOVO 18398ABS210810.55493245782.667.
HO840003241466185SSI-DUCKETT 3184Select210810.438103221792.734.
HO840003130790423PENN-ENGLAND BARB 1735A-ETSelect210810.25198244792.983.3-
HO840003224928461PEAK 3280-ETPEAK210810.368109289752.794.8-1.03.2-0.60.981.110.11-0.07731.96.32937
HO840003228009908SSI-TOG Z997Select210810.34676209782.766.
HO840003234514519JENNITON SB GMEDAY MAX-ETSelect210810.163129291782.932.4-1.65.0-1.21.620.980.070.82772.45.52937
HO840003241466200SSI-DUCKETT 3199Select210810.64995254782.787.
HO840003224239425KINGR 635Select210810.53994252782.725.
HO840003229908313PEAK 63793-ETPEAK210810.25887238782.933.
HO840003230986154DENOVO 18219ABS210810.457113297782.794.71.81.5-
HO840003235932958PEAK 84509-ETPEAK210810.155106264752.815.
HO840003235932982PEAK 84533-ETPEAK210810.66098259752.746.
HO840003239712496BOMAZ 342Select210810.641117249782.814.
HO840003130790435PENN-ENGLAND BARB 1747A-ETSelect21099.438112230782.674.
HO840003217141054PEN-COL G 992-ETSelect210810.05189258782.756.
HO840003224437624KINGR 50378Select210810.54492222782.775.
HO840003228764230COOKIECUTTER 90546Semex210810.74592227752.766.
HO840003230996901VATLAND 917Select210810.647110270782.855.
HO840003230997660SSI-PRESTON 326Select210810.063101261782.825.
HO840003231725235SANDY-VALLEY 4784Select210810.24992249782.724.
HO840003234514504JENNITON RENEGADE 302-ETSelect21079.556107235802.783.7-
HO840003236792990OCD 66311Select21089.74196211782.784.

High Ranking TPI® Genomic Females – October 2021

Registration NumberNameBirth DateGFISire's NamePTAPPTAP%PTAFPTAF%Feed Eff.% Rel.SCSPLLIVHealth
HO840003233644261GENOSOURCE DREAM UP70666-ET210810.6FARNEAR UPSIDE-ET820.0093-0.03315782.897.
HO840003229908331PEAK 63811-ET210810.5PEAK ALTAMAGNIFIQUE-ET720.071160.18293752.795.
HO840003233644213GENOSOURCE JENNA 70618-ET210811.0STGEN DEDICATE HEIR-ET700.121050.22310792.737.
HO840003233644260GENOSOURCE RAVEENA 70665-ET21089.8FARNEAR UPSIDE-ET750.08950.11305792.727.
HO840003234001413AR-JOY CU G-DAY HIGHEST-ET210610.5RMD-DOTTERER SSI GAMEDAY-ET490.071010.23258782.677.
HO840003233645667T-SPRUCE GS POSH 72072-ET210710.4GENOSOURCE CAPTAIN-ET620.061190.22315792.746.
HO840003217141051PEN-COL G 989-ET210810.3RMD-DOTTERER SSI GAMEDAY-ET490.091020.26253782.608.22.510.41.51.331.930.40-0.52762.64.83083
HO840003241466101S-S-I DELUXE 11605 3100-ET21089.9C-HAVEN POSITIVE DELUXE-ET570.121340.37308782.774.70.46.0-0.71.481.840.350.12762.14.23081
HO840003236337938DENOVO SENTIMENT 3335-ET210810.7DENOVO 16325 SENTIMENT-ET440.091270.37281782.815.
HO840003235932978PEAK 84529-ET210810.8PEAK ALTAMAGNIFIQUE-ET670.101340.29316752.984.72.74.2-0.81.501.110.550.64732.34.93074
HO840003217141048CHERRYPENCOL G 986-ET210810.5RMD-DOTTERER SSI GAMEDAY-ET450.091090.30254782.686.
HO840003236692164840003236692164-ET210810.8SANDY-VALLEY R CONWAY-ET600.141030.27270782.567.
HO840003233644320GENOSOURCE BAFFLE 70725-ET210811.6LADYS-MANOR OUTCOME-ET630.07810.10238782.766.
HO840003217141055CHERRYPENCOL G 993-ET210810.2RMD-DOTTERER SSI GAMEDAY-ET480.091230.33293782.706.
HO840003241772857SDG 4620 WHEELHOUSE 7718-ET210911.0PEAK WHEELHOUSE-ET560.041030.16263782.638.
HO840003227859454PEN-COL G 6271-ET210810.4RMD-DOTTERER SSI GAMEDAY-ET470.061110.26285782.567.
HO840003233644327GENOSOURCE BRAVO 70732210810.0FB 73 MONTREAL DUTTON-ET640.111300.31332782.685.71.13.5-0.20.580.590.62-0.66762.14.03059
HO840003214957378REGAN-DANHOF GD CHERISH-ET210611.0RMD-DOTTERER SSI GAMEDAY-ET520.031000.16256782.616.
HO840003228765138COOKIECUTTER MUS HADELIA-ET21059.5OCD FORTE MUSCLES-ET530.071220.28286782.885.
HO840003223509850WET FANECA MAYHEM-ET210810.6BADGER SSI LUCIA FANECA-ET590.051190.21276782.814.
HO840003234744562MELARRY 2417210910.3RMD-DOTTERER SSI GAMEDAY-ET570.081250.29299782.755.
HO840003240583764HILMAR-D ALONSO 19026-ET21089.8FB 7683 BILLY ALONSO-ET590.031100.16283782.607.
HO840003225323369FB 497300 GAMEDAY 700831-ET210910.6RMD-DOTTERER SSI GAMEDAY-ET460.061080.25258782.716.
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Dairy farmers cut milk production due to higher feed costs

Severe drought, particularly in the West, has reduced forage supplies and driven feed prices higher, according to Bob Cropp, University of Wisconsin Extension dairy economist.

“Corn and soybean meal prices are much higher than a year ago,” Cropp says. “With higher feed costs driving tighter margins, dairy producers are likely to further reduce cow numbers, and milk per cow may be dampened some.”

USDA’s milk production report estimated August milk production to be 1.1% higher than a year ago. “This is the first time the growth in milk production has been below 2% since March,” Cropp notes.

Declining cow numbers

Milk cow numbers have declined for three consecutive months. August cow numbers fell 19,000 from July and 29,000 from May. The number of cows was still 1.1% higher than a year ago. Just nine of the 24 reporting states had fewer milk cows than a year ago. The largest reductions were in New Mexico, down 15,000 head, and in Washington, down 10,000 head.

Adverse weather impacted milk per cow, with no increase over a year ago. Ten of the 24 states reported milk per cow lower than a year ago, according to USDA.

South Dakota led all states in increased milk production, up 16.2% from 22,000 more cows and higher milk per cow. However, for the five leading dairy states, the increase in milk production was lower than in recent months:

  • California at 0.7%
  • Wisconsin at 2.6%
  • Idaho at 1.1%
  • New York at 0.3%
  • Texas at 3.2%

Seven of the 24 states reported less milk production than a year ago, and all seven had fewer milk cows. The monthly increase in milk production from the prior year is likely to continue to decline for the remainder of the year and into next year, Cropp says. Dairy producers are experiencing tight margins with higher feed costs.

Compared to August, September prices for dry whey remained unchanged, with averages higher for:

  • Butter, up 11 cents per pound
  • nonfat dry milk, up 8 cents
  • barrel cheese, up 5 cents
  • 40-pound cheddar, up 4 cents

“With higher dairy product prices, the September Class III price will average $16.60, compared to $15.95 for August, and Class IV about $16.50, compared to $15.92 for August,” Cropp says.

Outlook for year

What can we expect for milk prices for the remainder of the year?

“Butter and cheese prices normally increase, as do milk prices September through November,” Cropp says. “Milk production is seasonally lower late summer — schools open, increasing beverage milk sales, and dairy product buyers increase purchases of butter and cheese to build stock levels for the strong seasonal demand from Thanksgiving through Christmas.

“We can expect price increases this year, but the increase maybe dampened by increased cheese production, relatively high stock levels, and possibly some setback in food service if the surge in cases of the Delta virus and mask mandates make consumers more reluctant to eat out and attend public events,” he says.

The latest dairy product report showed July production of American cheese up 2.3% from a year ago, and total cheese production up 3.5%. July 31 stock levels show American cheese stocks were up 4.2% from a year ago, and total cheese stocks were up 4.1%.

“Despite some possible impact of the Delta virus, cheese sales should remain strong and higher than a year ago,” Cropp says. “With more eating out rather than home-prepared meals, beverage milk sales have been running below a year ago. Beverage milk sales for July were 6.3% lower than a year ago, with year-to-date sales 5.3% lower. Butter sales may also not be as high, as butter sales were strong a year ago with more home-prepared meals.”

Robust dairy exports

Dairy exports have been a positive factor for milk prices and are expected to continue for the remainder of the year, Cropp says. U.S. dairy product prices remain price competitive to other major exporters.

“Milk production among other major exporters is expected to be no more than 1% higher than a year ago,” Cropp says. “July U.S. export volume on a milk solids-equivalent basis was 7% higher than a year ago — the sixth straight monthly increase. Increased exports to China and Mexico lead the way.”

Nonfat dry milk and skim milk powder exports were 3.1% lower due to reduced sales to Southeast Asia, which may be partially explained by continued congestion at California ports. But whey product exports were up 17.8%, cheese exports up 26.8% and butterfat exports up 86.1%, according to USDA.

“As of now, it seems reasonable that Class III could be $16.60 for September, $17.25 for October and peaking around $17.60 for November, and falling back to $17.40 for December,” Cropp says.

Current Class III futures are not this high, being in the low $17s October through December, he adds. Class IV could be in the high $16s to low $17s September through December.

“If milk production slows down more than expected and domestic sales are higher, along with strong exports, prices could end up higher,” Cropp concludes.


Low production boosts New Zealand milk price forecast

Westpac has upgraded its 2021-22 farm-gate milk price forecast by 75c to $8.50, citing the significant downgrade to its production forecast for the season.

If achieved, that would be a record high, surpassing the previous record of $8.40 set in 2013-14, senior agri-economist Nathan Penny said in the bank’s latest update.

The bank previously expected production to lift by 1% but it now expected it to fall by 1% compared to last season. It had started the season ‘‘on the back foot’’ and winter and spring had been either wet or cold or both in many parts of the country.

Production for the first three months of the season was running 1.8% behind the same stage of last season and that production softness was expected to continue in the short-term.

‘‘Most of the weakness to date was concentrated in August, which came in 4.2% below August 2020. Anecdotes also suggest that September will be similarly weak.

‘‘With the first four months of the year accounting for around 20% of the season’s production, it will be very difficult for production to be made up later,’’ he said.

Dairy production elsewhere was also soft. Weather had affected European production which, for the first seven months of the year, was down 0.1% compared to the same time a year ago. Chinese and United States production continued to be constrained by very high feed costs and limited feed availability.

Recent auction results also reflected the slowdown in global dairy production. Overall and wholemilk powder auction prices had lifted by about 5% since August.

In this week’s GlobalDairyTrade auction, prices were largely unchanged. Whole milk powder prices fell 0.4% while overall prices were flat. The result was weaker than expectations. Futures market pricing was signalling a WMP price lift of 2%.

ASB has retained its $8.20 Fonterra milk price for the season. Economist Nathaniel Keall said farmers could be confident of a farm-gate milk price above the $7.54 they received last season.


UK dairy farm profits in last milk year down £48 a cow

Dairy farm profits in a costed group averaged £185 a cow in the milk year ended 31 March, a drop of £48 a cow on the previous year.  

Falling milk prices, rising feed costs and straw prices at levels not seen before were just part of the mix pushing profits down.

Higher non-milk income from an improved beef market helped limit the fall in profits, with average herd size down from 307 to 269 head as farmers culled harder.

The figures come from The Milk Cost of Production report by rural accountant Old Mill and the Farm Consultancy Group. For ease of comparison between farms, the figures are before rent, interest payments, drawings, direct payments, tax and capital expenditure.

Dan Heal, rural adviser at Old Mill, said the sector had done well to maintain profit at this level.

“There is a huge range of production levels within the top 10% – from 4,828 litres a cow to 9,711 litres a cow – showing that a focus on efficiency pays, whatever the yield,” said Mr Heal.

Labour costs rose by £27 a cow to £485 a cow. Mark Yearsley of the Farm Consultancy Group said silage prices had jumped by 42%, with power and machinery up £19 a cow to £543 a cow.

Key points from milk costings report

  • Fourth year in a row of profits higher than £100 a cow – increased yields offset drop in milk price
  • Average yield rose by 151 litres a cow due to favourable milk-to-feed ratio and good-quality forage
  • Total cost of production of £2,393 a cow averaged more than milk income of £2,321 a cow
  • Top 10% spent £278 a cow less on concentrates than bottom 10%
  • Cost control meant the top 10% of producers had £1,097 a cow lower costs than bottom 10%, who spent an average of £2,954 a cow
  • The top 10% brought in £231 a cow more on an average yield of 7,229 litres a cow a year, compared with the bottom 10%’s higher yield of 7,483 litres

Looking ahead

In the current milk year, labour, energy and machinery costs are expected to continue to rise, bringing a prediction of profit falling to £167 a cow, as marginal litres become uneconomical to produce, said Mr Heal.

The gap between milk income and cost of production is projected to rise to £189 a cow as yields fall due to higher feed prices.

However, non-milk income is forecast to rise again, by £365 a cow, as beef prices remain high.

“Compared with the rollercoaster of 2020-21, the current season has felt quite stable up to now,” said Mr Heal.

“The milk price has been relatively static and although costs have risen rapidly, forage is in plentiful supply, certainly within the South West. All of this points to a winter where the focus needs to be on profitability rather than production, and to ensure any extra litres do indeed pay their way.”

The costed farms all have a 31 March year-end and earn their income mainly or solely from milk sales, across a range of farming systems.

While rent, interest, drawings, tax, capital expenditure and direct payments are excluded from the figures, a labour charge of £30,000 is included for each full-time partner or director in the business, and depreciation is included.


Milk Futures Continue to Climb Higher in Chicago Thursday

On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange milk futures were again mostly higher Thursday as was cash trade with continued export market support. October declined 10 cents to $18.05/cwt while November added 14 cents and December was up 12.  2022 months ranged from 2 to 7 cents higher.  The 2022 average last traded Thursday at $18.07/cwt.  Class IV experienced a similar move as November gained 10 cents and December was up 8.  2022 ended 2-11 cents in the green as well.

CME spot markets resulted in dry whey up $0.0025 at $0.5950. One sale was made at that price. Blocks up $0.0025 at $1.81. One sale was made at that price. Barrels down $0.02 at $1.7675. Butter unchanged at $1.6975. Nonfat dry milk up $0.0125 at $1.4425. Three trades were made at $1.44 and $1.4425.

Sonoma County dairy farmers allowed to tap into aquifer as new water source

Sonoma County dairy farmers allowed to tap into aquifer as new water source

Dairy cow farmers in Petaluma caught a huge break Thursday. Because of the drought many cows have been drinking water trucked in from miles away. Now they and the public are being allowed to tap into a new underground water source.

PETALUMA, Calif. – Dairy cow farmers in Petaluma caught a huge break Thursday. Because of the drought many cows have been drinking water trucked in from miles away.

“Every day our farmers are hauling roughly 60-70,000 gallons a day, sometimes 10 truckloads to their cows,” says Tawny Tesconi, executive director of the Sonoma County Farm Bureau. 

But with a turn of a valve, they’ll be able to replenish their water supplies without going through all that.

“So without this program, those dairies would have had to go out of business,” Tesconi said.

The new water is coming from an underground aquifer that the water district is tapping into through this drought relief well.

It will now send 1.6 million gallons of water a day to a storage unit in Petaluma. Cows and residents alike will be drinking it along with folks in Sonoma and parts of Marin Counties.

This emergency relief well was used during the drought six years ago, but never to this extent.

“This is probably the largest use of groundwater to date. We have two other wells that will also have to be brought online. For now, the demand is so great,” said Sonoma Water General Manager Grant Davis.

Much of Sonoma County relies on the Russian River as its main source of water. But water levels there are low and getting lower.

To reduce its reliance on the river, Sonoma Water has dug deep. 800-feet deep to be exact. That underground water is treated and safe to drink.

“This well is helping us meet a state mandate to reduce diversions off the Russian river and actually make it through this severe drought,” said Davis.

Dairy cows drink about 40 gallons a day. They and other livestock will be getting about a quarter of the underground water. The rest will go to the public through different water utilities.

The district expects to build a water recovery system so that it can replenish the water it is taking out, with water from the winter rains. 


Fonterra pulls out all the stops to woo farmers

Fonterra’s board is pulling out all stops to get farmer shareholder approval for its proposed capital structure.

The co-operative has pushed back its annual meeting to December to allow more time for farmer consultations.

Last week, board directors including chair Peter McBride attended farmer meetings throughout the country. The Auckland-based Fonterra management team couldn’t attend due to Covid travel restrictions.

Speaking to Rural News before embarking on the farmer roadshow, McBride was confident farmers would back the latest proposal that includes key changes.

However, he says the board is open to tweaking the proposal.

“Let’s see how the conversations evolve. We are prepared to tinker with the proposal but it is hard to accommodate everybody,” McBride told Rural News.

“The key changes we’ve made strongly reflect on aspects we heard from farmers.”

McBride, who attended farmer meetings in the lower South Island, wants to meet as many farmers as he can.

“I’m keen to look them in the eye and for them to hear the conviction of my voice – that this is in the best interests of the co-op.”

Fonterra’s chair says the co-op’s annual meeting, normally held in November, has been pushed back to December allowing more time for farmer consultations and work on the final capital structure proposal.

While no date has been set for the AGM, McBride says it is unlikely to go past December.

The revised capital proposal was announced on the same day the co-operative released its new strategy to focus on New Zealand milk.

McBride says the capital structure and strategy go hand-in-hand.

“We are confident that this proposal would support the sustainable supply of New Zealand milk that our long-term strategy relies on.

“One enables the other, and together they give our co-operative the potential to deliver the competitive returns that will continue to support our families’ livelihoods from this generation to the next.”

Key changes in the revised capital structure proposal are that the new minimum shareholding requirement would be set at 33% of milk supply (around 1 share per 3kgMS), compared to the current compulsory requirement of 1 share per 1kgMS and new maximum shareholding requirement would be set at 4x milk supply, compared to the current 2x milk supply.

More types of farmers – sharemilkers, contract milkers and farm lessors – will be able to buy Fonterra shares and exit provisions would be extended and entry provisions would be eased.

The Fonterra Shareholders Fund would be capped to protect ownership and control.


Indiana dairyman wins the Klussendorf-MacKenzie Award

Jeff Stookey of Milford, Ind., was presented the 30th Klussendorf-MacKenzie Award during World Dairy Expo® 2021, in memory of Duncan MacKenzie, the 1961 Klussendorf winner. While this year’s Klussendorf-MacKenzie award winner has an impressive dairy résumé, it is most important to note that Stookey exemplifies the standards that made Duncan MacKenzie the forbearer of this award.

This seventh-generation dairyman’s passion for the dairy industry and desire to help others began at a very young age, working side-by-side with his father, John, on the family’s dairy. While working on the farm, Stookey also spent time fitting cattle from 1977 to 1993. With a true eye for “the good ones,” he bought animals while working on the road and developed them into show winners at home, furthering the farm’s genetic base. After his father suffered a heart attack in the early 1990s, Stookey returned to work full-time on the family farm and continued developing his Registered Holstein and Jersey herd.

During his career, this year’s MacKenzie award winner has exhibited 47 All Indiana and 24 Reserve All Indiana winners. On the national stage, he exhibited the Junior Champion of the International Holstein Show at the 1999 World Dairy Expo and the Junior Champion at the 2008 All American Dairy Show in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. This Indiana dairyman has sold numerous animals to Brazil, Canada, Japan, and Mexico, as well as many animals to fellow U.S. breeders.

As Stookey made his way to the colored shavings on Friday, October 1 at World Dairy Expo to receive his award, he most certainly would have wanted to recognize that it takes a team to run a dairy. With that in mind, Jeff would be quick to thank his wife, Marla, and their children and their spouses, Maranda and Camron, and Mallarie and Micah, for their work on the dairy.

Serving as the meeting place of the global dairy industry, World Dairy Expo brings together the latest in dairy innovation and the best cattle in North America. The dairy industry will return to Madison, Wis. for the 54th event, September 28 – October 2, 2021, when the world’s largest dairy-focused trade show, dairy and forage seminars, world-class dairy cattle show and more will be on display. Download the World Dairy Expo mobile event app, visit or follow WDE on FacebookTwitterLinkedInSpotifyInstagram or YouTube for more information.

New immigration law opens door for 4,000 New Zealand dairy workers to become Kiwis

DairyNZ says the Government’s long-awaited decision to provide a pathway to residency is exciting news for thousands of eligible dairy farm workers.

DairyNZ chief executive Dr Tim Mackle says the government announcement allows many valued international dairy workers to become residents and recognises their years of hard work on farms and positive contribution to the dairy sector.

“We are genuinely delighted for these workers and their families. Many dairy workers can now plan and look forward to a future in New Zealand with their families,” says Dr Mackle. “Their contribution will assist the dairy sector to continue playing a key role in New Zealand’s economy.”

For the past 18 months, DairyNZ and Federated Farmers have worked in close partnership to ensure the best possible outcome for migrant dairy workers and their employers.

“We appreciate that the Government has acknowledged the pressure farmers are under, due to being short-staffed, and also recognise the critical role international workers play.”

A number of dairy workers have had residency applications on hold since before Covid-19 affected New Zealand in early 2020. Many have been without their families, who are overseas.

“We have a significant number of international dairy workers in New Zealand who have been here for many years. They play an essential role in our farm teams and enable dairy to continue its vital contribution to New Zealand’s economy,” said Dr Mackle.

“Our country and our rural communities will benefit from these workers and their families formally becoming New Zealanders. Their children help keep our rural schools open and their partners bring skills to our rural regions at a time when many employers are struggling to find staff.”

The announcement does come too late for some workers, as a number of migrants wanting to become New Zealand residents have already left for Australia or Canada, which offered certainty about residency rules.

While today’s decision is positive, it doesn’t fully address the scale of the staff shortages on farm – dairy farmers are still short an estimated 2000 to 4000 workers.

DairyNZ and the Government want to attract more Kiwis into dairy careers and DairyNZ’s GoDairy campaign enables New Zealanders to find out more about working in the dairy sector.

Dr Mackle says that it’s been a really tough time for many farmers, particularly during calving. A DairyNZ farmer survey showed around half of New Zealand’s dairy farmers have been coping with a staff shortage.

“However today many farmers, employers and employees will be celebrating and we celebrate with them.”

The 2021 Residents Visa will be open to an estimated 4,000 dairy workers. Anyone working as a dairy cattle worker can apply, along with those working in dairy roles in New Zealand for three years or more, or workers in New Zealand for a shorter timeframe on a higher skills visa earning above $27 an hour. Dairy workers who are granted a class exception visa and will enter the country over coming months are also eligible.

More information on criteria for the new 2021 residency visa is available online at

Kentucky Dairyman Wins the 2021 Klussendorf Award

Jeff Core of Salvisa, Kentucky was presented the 79th Klussendorf Award, the highest recognition given to a dairy cattle showman in the United States during the 54th World Dairy Expo. Core embodies every admirable quality of a great, late dairyman.

The award is given in memory of Arthur B. Klussendorf, considered an outstanding showman of his time and a model for all those who have followed him. This year’s selection was made by members of the Klussendorf Memorial Association, formed in 1937, at its annual meeting held earlier this week in Madison, Wisconsin. Core received the silver trophy designed by Tiffany Jewelers of New York City on Friday, October 1.

Born and raised on an Iowa Jersey farm, Core traveled to Kentucky four decades ago to see some of the best Jersey farms in the world. It was on that trip that he met his wife, and they went on to create the Keightley and Core Jersey Farm.

Throughout the years, this dairyman and his wife have bred and exhibited multiple national champions, placed bulls in A.I. studs, and have bred production award winners. The farm has been a regular exhibitor at both World Dairy Expo and the All American Jersey Show.

Not only has the 79th Klussendorf winner worked to build an excellent herd of Jersey cattle, Core has also judged both nationally and internationally including serving as the associate judge on the colored shavings for the 2019 International Brown Swiss Show; as associate judge of the 2004 All American Jersey Show; and as official judge at shows in both Canada and Mexico.

The Klussendorf Award was developed to recognize those who exemplify a person with great character, sportsmanship, ability, and endeavor to dairy cattle shows. There is no more dedicated individual to caring for and exhibiting Jersey cattle than Jeff Core. In addition to these great attributes, Core is a loyal friend to many in the industry and he is always willing to lend advice and help to anyone who takes an interest in the industry.

Jeff Core joined his wife, Alta Mae, as the first husband-wife duo to receive the Klussendorf Award. Alta Mae Core won the same honor in 1999.

Serving as the meeting place of the global dairy industry, World Dairy Expo brings together the latest in dairy innovation and the best cattle in North America. The dairy industry will return to Madison, Wis. for the 54th event, September 28 – October 2, 2021, when the world’s largest dairy-focused trade show, dairy and forage seminars, world-class dairy cattle show and more will be on display. Download the World Dairy Expo mobile event app, visit or follow WDE on FacebookTwitterLinkedInSpotifyInstagram or YouTube for more information.

Wisconsin’s Nickels wins the 2021 Merle Howard Award

Kylie Nickels was named the 17th Merle Howard Award winner at the 54thWorld Dairy Expo on Saturday, October 2. A hard-working, dedicated, and passionate showman, this year’s Merle Howard Award honoree started her showing career by exhibiting grade cattle from a nearby neighbor.

From that humble beginning, Nickels began pursuing her dreams of building a dairy herd when she purchased her first registered Holstein . . . a spring calf. Following a mating to the Holstein sire named Atwood, her very first bred and owned calf was born a few years later. That first bred and owned animal eventually earned first-place honors at her district Holstein show and later a top ten finish at the Wisconsin State Holstein show. Nickels, now a University of Wisconsin-Madison student, most recently developed the winning Grand Champion of the 2021 International Junior Jersey Show at World Dairy Expo. 

There’s a reason for all the success this junior has earned . . . Nickels is one of the hardest working youths in the barns. Whether it’s helping catch manure, feeding hay, or being the one stuck clipping legs, no job is too big or too small for this young lady. To further develop her skills, Nickels began working for some of the very best breeder-exhibitors in the area, including Cresentmead, Crestbrooke, the Sell Family, the Great Northern, and Budjon Farms. Those experiences also allowed her to hone her skills working at shows across the country.

The more this Dodge County junior learned about dairy cattle, the more she wanted to give back to fellow juniors. With an unquenchable desire to learn, Nickels teaches others by mentoring youth via fitting and showing clinics held at their family farm. In recent years, she has also served as herdsperson for her county at the Wisconsin State Fair and prepped nearly all the county’s cattle for the show.

It’s at that Wisconsin State Fair that not once, but twice, she was named Supreme Champion Showman of the entire show in 2019 and 2021. A well-rounded individual, just a few years earlier, Nickels was on the Dodge County team that represented Wisconsin at the National 4-H Dairy Cattle Judging Contest at World Dairy Expo. That team won the entire contest that year.

Nickels’ eye for good cattle also made her an ideal person to serve as committee chair for selections at the 2021 University of Wisconsin-Madison Badger Dairy Club Online Sale. As a member of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Dairy Cattle Judging Team, Kylie earned second-place individual honors at the 27th Annual Vernon County Dairy Cattle Judging Contest in September 2021.

Nearly all the previous award winners of the Merle Howard Award were on hand for the award presentation. They include: 2004, Robert Teixeira, Turlock, Calif.; 2005, Matthew Mitchell, Speedwell, Tenn.; 2006, Greta Koebel, Poplar Grove, Ill.; 2007, Brandon Ferry, Hilbert, Wis.; 2008, Kelly Lee Reynolds, Corfu, N.Y.; 2009, Kyle Natzke, Fond du Lac, Wis.; 2010, Stephanie Aves Schroeder, Belmont, Wis.; 2011, Karen Anderson Johnson, Litchfield, Minn.; 2012, Cy Conard, Sharon Springs, N.Y.; 2013, Cassy Krull, Lake Mills, Wis.; 2014, Jade Jensen Kruschke, New Richmond, Wis.; 2015, Jared Dueppengiesser, Oshkosh, Wis.; 2016, Doug Boop, Millmont, Pa.; 2017, Dawson Nickels, Watertown, Wis.; 2018, Kyle Barton, Randolph, Wis.; and 2019, Kaleb Kruse, Dyersville, Iowa.

Merle Howard was a respected dairy industry pioneer. Winner of the 1954 Klussendorf Award, Howard was a herd manager, Holstein classifier, and later a sales and export businessman. Howard also served on the first National Dairy Shrine Board of Directors. Dairy farmers still struggling due to the pandemic might have a solution soon

North Central Florida lawmakers from across the aisle are working together to help dairy farms struggling due to the pandemic.

Representatives Kat Cammack and Al Lawson among others sent a letter to US Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. They say current pandemic aid doesn’t go far enough to help farmers.

Dairy farmers were forced to dump hundreds of gallons of milk contributing to upwards of $35 billion in losses.

Dear Secretary Vilsack:

We write to you to call attention to the inequities facing Florida dairies under the current Federal Milk Marketing Order (FMMO) as they recover from market disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Dairies in our state of Florida suffered from particularly high losses due to the failure of the Class I mover to work as originally intended. Despite the department’s announcement of the Pandemic Market Volatility Assistance Program (PMVAP) to come to the relief of our nation’s dairies, the program as it stands will unfortunately not go far enough to ensure Florida’s dairy farmers can truly recover from these unprecedented losses.

Florida is uniquely situated as an almost exclusively Class I fluid market, producing a perishable product with a limited shelf life. As you know, the 2018 Farm Bill changed the Class I mover calculation for fluid milk to one based on an average of the Class III (cheese) and IV (butter and powder) price. This change, which went into effect in 2019, was intended to be revenue-neutral for dairy farmers.

Despite the best efforts to ensure a new formula that works for our nation’s fluid milk producers, the events surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic ultimately undermined the formula’s revenue neutrality. With the pandemic hampering our supply chains and forcing schools and businesses to temporarily close, Florida’s dairy farmers were forced to dump hundreds of thousands of gallons of fluid milk. While The Farmers to Families Food Box Program attempted to provide relief to dairy farmers among other producers, the program heavily favored purchasing of cheese (Class III). This in turn helped create an even greater imbalance in dairy sales and a significantly lower Class I mover price. The failure of the Class I mover to work successfully for Florida dairies led our state’s farmers to incur losses at upwards of $35 billion from January 2020 through February 2021.

We are encouraged by USDA’s recent work to implement the PMVAP to compensate producers, however we are disappointed to see that the program does not go far enough to provide relief for our dairies in Florida who, thanks to the Class I mover change, were particularly hard hit. The program limits reimbursements to five million pounds—or just over 200 cows—per producers. Consequently, many of our state’s dairies will only be able to recoup a small portion of their overall losses from what was an unprecedented year.

Our nation’s dairy farmers deserve parity regardless of their size, geographic location, or what they produce. While we look forward to addressing the larger issues with the Class I mover formula, to ensure equity for our dairy producers in Florida in the short term, we plan to work to secure additional funding for the PMVAP to fully reimburse all dairy farmers for this loss and in a manner that does not impose limitations based on size or volume. In that context, we ask that USDA work with us to support this effort. As Members of Congress, we stand ready and willing to work with your department to ensure that the Pandemic Market Volatility Assistance Program is funded in a manner that meets the needs of all of our dairy farmers.


The plight of Amish dairy farmers

But what about the Amish? We ask a professor who studies Amish populations about the unique challenges facing these farmers who don’t use modern technology in their milk production. (Listen Here)

Milk Futures Continue to Climb Higher

On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange milk futures continued higher Wednesday supported by strong exports and mostly higher cash trade. October Class III milk down six cents at $18.15. November three cents higher at $18.59. December up eight cents at $18.19. January four cents higher at $17.86. February through April contracts 10 to 19 cents higher.

On spot trade, dry whey up $0.0025 at $0.5925. Blocks unchanged at $1.8075. One sale was made at that price. Barrels down $0.0050 at $1.7875. Three trades were made at that price. Butter up $0.0075 at $1.6975. Eleven sales were made from $1.6975 to $1.7250. Nonfat dry milk up $0.0125 at $1.43. Eleven trades were made from $1.42 to $1.43.

NMPF Cooperative Leader Spotlights Need for Class I Pricing Changes at Senate Hearing

Congress must do additional work to ensure dairy farmers are fairly compensated for losses rooted in a change to the pricing formula for Class I milk, a leader of Agri-Mark Cooperative and a member of NMPF’s Economic Policy Committee said today in a hearing called by Senate Agriculture Committee dairy subcommittee chair Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY).

The hearing focused on issues related to milk pricing and the Federal Milk Marketing Order system, which has shown strains during the COVID-19 pandemic due in large part to flaws in the current Class I mover and its ripple effects through dairy revenues. The pandemic “has created an even greater urgency to revisit orders,” said Catherine H. de Ronde, vice president for economic and legislative affairs for Agri-Mark, based in Middlebury, VT, in her testimony. “Negative PPDs had milk checks looking incredibly bizarre, de-pooling at a level never-before seen became a new phenomenon for many. The change to the underlying Class I mover was a key catalyst of these outcomes.”

The 2018 Farm Bill changed the Class I mover, which determines the price of fluid milk under the Federal Milk Marketing Order system, at the urging of dairy processors who sought greater price predictability. The change contributed to substantial market volatility last year and has led to an estimated $750 million in losses for farmers compared to the previous Class I formula. Without a fix, dairy farmers will permanently bear unfair and unnecessary price risk compared to processors during times of unusual market volatility.

USDA plans to mitigate last year’s losses somewhat through its Pandemic Market Volatility Assistance Program, which will reimburse farmers for $350 million of those losses. But that initiative distributes payments unevenly, requiring further remedies to equitably fill the gap for producers of all sizes.

“The National Milk Producers Federation appreciates the work of Senators Gillibrand and Hyde-Smith for today’s initial examination of crucial milk pricing issues,” said Jim Mulhern, president and CEO of NMPF. “Dairy farmers have done their best to navigate this ongoing crisis, aided in part by necessary disaster assistance. But without equitable assistance, many family dairy farmers across the nation will needlessly struggle from the effects of the Class I mover change they’ve already felt. And without a change in the mover, we can only expect these struggles will recur.”

Gillibrand leads the Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy, Poultry, Local Food Systems, and Food Safety and Security. Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS) serves as the subcommittee’s Ranking Member.

Epigentics: precise thinking

Nessa Carey of Synomics considers how epigenetics and the greater understanding of data can be used to support breeders and producers in ‘precision farming’.


Efficient production of food – whether it’s crops or animals – relies on two main features: producers try to select the genetic specimens that are best suited to particular environmental conditions.

It’s really just another version of the old ‘Nature plus Nurture’ paradigm, where Nature is represented by the DNA sequences in the genes, and Nurture by environmental stimuli of many types from irrigation levels to the amount of sunlight, and from seaweed in cattle feed to calcium levels in silage.

But have you ever wondered how genes and the environment communicate with each other? Why does winter barley need a period of cold before the genes that control flowering deign to wake up and start the process that leads to beautiful healthy grains?

It’s only really in the last few decades that scientists have begun to develop an understanding of what’s happening at a cellular level when organisms respond to their environment. It’s a field that’s incredibly complex and developing fast, and it has the potential to increase the efficiency of modern farming practices, increasing yield while minimising inputs.

This field is called epigenetics. ‘Epi’ comes from Greek and means ‘as well as’, ‘in addition to’ or ‘on top of’. It refers to a whole level of information that’s quite literally deposited on top of DNA molecules, changing the way that genes are expressed.

The easiest way to visualise this is if we think of DNA not as a blueprint or a template, but as a script. If you’ve ever seen two productions of the same play, you’ll know that they can look and sound completely different even though the two versions use the same words. During read-throughs and rehearsals, the director and cast will have annotated their scripts with pencil marks, Post-It notes, highlighter pens etc and used these notations as prompts for how to deliver their lines. It turns out that something similar is happening all the time to DNA in cells, in response to environmental signals. A huge range of tiny specific chemicals get added to DNA and the proteins that are associated with it. They never change the sequence of the genes (the original DNA ‘script’) but they instruct the cell to use those genes in different ways. This can include turning them on or off or pushing gene expression up or down (analogous to an actor shouting or whispering his/her lines).

A dynamic system

The great thing about epigenetics is that it’s a very dynamic system. DNA itself can’t change rapidly in response to the environment during the lifetime of an individual, be it a broad bean or a boar. But responding quickly is exactly what the epigenetic system has evolved to do, so it gives organisms a fighting chance when their environment changes, whether that’s a sudden decrease in rainfall or an equally sudden increase in salinity.

Because the system is dynamic, it also contains a degree of random flux. That may seem like a bad thing, but in terms of responding quickly to dynamic changes it’s actually incredibly useful. It means that in any population, whether of cells or individuals, there will always be some who are epigenetically better positioned than others to quickly make the additions to DNA that will allow that individual to roll with the environmental punches. It’s an inevitable consequence of an intrinsically noisy system.

Scientists actually recognised this randomness in biological systems about a hundred years ago. They realised that genetically identical mice, raised under identical laboratory conditions, varied in key aspects such as body weight. The researchers gave this phenomenon the name ‘intangible variation’ which sounded great but didn’t mean anything. But now we know that this intangible variation is actually a manifestation of the noise in the epigenetic system.

The impact on breeding

How will we use our new information to help breeders and producers? Real-time monitoring of the pattern of epigenetic changes to the genetic material of crops and animals will act as a way of filling in the missing data that can’t be provided by genomics alone. We’ll be able to identify the individual plants and animals that are epigenetically better attuned to their environment and focus resources on those, whether in the greenhouse or in the barn. Nutrients can be directed to those who will benefit most, creating genuinely precision farming.

The epigenetic system is incredibly responsive to the smallest changes in environmental conditions and can act as an early warning system to alert producers to the need for food supplements or other interventions before there are any detectable signs of physiological stress.
What’s standing between this appealing vision and its implementation? Basically, it’s data, and for once the problem isn’t that we don’t have enough, it’s that there’s a risk that there will be far more than most systems can handle.

Epigenetics is the Lego Technic to the Lego Duplo of genomics. That’s because DNA information is incredibly stable and consistent. Every cell in an individual organism has exactly the same DNA sequence as every other cell, and the sequence doesn’t change with time. Epigenetics is the complete opposite of this; the epigenetic signature varies enormously between cell types (it’s actually epigenetics that drives the process whereby you have different cell types even though they all contain the same genetic information) and in each cell it will vary depending on the precise environment.

Simple building blocks

DNA is also a really simple system – it’s made from just four building blocks (think four pieces of Lego all the same size and shape but in four colours) arranged in different sequences and the whole sequence can be analysed using just one technology. Epigenetics isn’t like that. There are many different kinds of modifications that can be added to DNA to change gene expression. If we over-extend our Lego analogy, it’s as if you’re building a model from Lego, Meccano, Sticklebriks (remember those?) and PlayDoh. The technologies to detect each type of modification have to be adapted to detect them all.

Genetic studies are often complicated by the fact that there may be several different DNA regions that all contribute to the final outcome. With epigenetics, you don’t only need to analyse the effects of different modifications in different regions of the genome, you also have to understand how the combinations of modifications at a single region influence the final read-out in terms of gene expression. And even once you have all that data, you need to understand what it means for the final phenotype.

This complexity potentially creates datasets that are orders of magnitude larger than those created from genetic information. It’s just too much data, and not enough actionable information.
This is where the Synomics platform is positioned to potentially transform how we use epigenetic information. The Synomics technology has already demonstrated that it can deconvolute genetic information with a speed and sensitivity never before achieved. This has been demonstrated in species as diverse as cassava and chickens. The next exciting challenge is to turn the power of this platform onto epigenetic data.

This is likely to happen in stepwise way – first identifying which are the key epigenetic modifications to monitor which really reflect and predict changes in phenotype, and then applying the technology in rapid readout situations that really change how a food producer can create the greatest synergies between Nature and Nurture.

It’s not here just yet. But we’re starting off down a very exciting track.

New Zealand’s a2 Milk faces lawsuit over misleading forecasts

a2 Milk Co Ltd said on Wednesday 6 October that Australian law firm Slater and Gordon has filed a class action lawsuit against the dairy firm on behalf of investors that alleges that a2 issued misleading production forecasts.

Reuters reports that the action was brought on behalf of investors who bought its shares over a nine-month period when it issued multiple earnings downgrades.

Shares of a2 Milk, which had plunged 62% during the nine-month period from August 2020 to May 2021, fell as much as 5.3% to NZ$6.450 following the news and were on track for their worst session in more than a month.

The class action alleges that a2 Milk engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct in breach of the Corporations Act, and also breached continuous disclosure rules in posting four downgrades between September 2020 and May 2021, Slater and Gordon said in a statement.

The downgrades came amid Australia’s souring ties with top trade partner China since 2018 and subsequent disruptions in the “daigou” channel, where Chinese shoppers buy products from outside China and resell it in the country. The channel accounts for a major portion of a2 Milk’s revenue. 

“There was a strong basis to allege that the company provided misleading guidance and was obliged to correct the market’s understanding of its financial position at a much earlier time,” Slater and Gordon Class Actions Practice Group Leader Kaitlin Ferris said.

A2 Milk, which has lost nearly half its value since December, denied any liabilities and said it would “vigorously” defend the proceedings.

The lawsuit, which was filed in the Supreme Court of Victoria, comes months after media reports concerning a potential class action by the law firm.

Read more about this story here.

Source: Reuters

Milk prices vary across Canadian provinces

The average price of milk increased 3.6 per cent since March 2020 in 18 of 20 markets

The cheapest milk prices in Canada are in the northern Ontario city of Sudbury.

Milk prices vary from market to market, according to a study by Field Agent Canada.

The average price of milk increased 3.6 per cent since March 2020 in 18 of 20 markets reviewed by the Canadian Fluid Milk Report.

Price changes ranged from 10.6 per cent increase in Halifax to .6 per cent in Laval, Quebec. Prices dropped in Victoria, B.C., by 6.1 per cent and by 4.6 per cent in Charlottetown, P.E.I.

The cheapest milk found in Sudbury at $4.68 for a four-litre jug for two per cent compares with $7.13 in Moncton, New Brunswick.

While the lower Sudbury milk price comes from retail competition and use of milk as a loss leader to attract customers, Field Agent General Manager Gerry Doucette says differences in regional prices are generally caused by the supply management system which controls milk production through provincial quotas.

“In Quebec there are higher prices in general versus Ontario — that’s more of a supply management piece,” he told Canadian Grocer. “In Atlantic Canada it’s really about inefficiencies. Because milk doesn’t flow freely across borders in Canada you don’t have efficiencies of shipping milk from Ontario to the Maritimes and doing it at a much lower price.”

The least expensive milk in retail stores was found in Costco in Ontario, Manitoba and B.C. at $4.65 for a four-litre jug ($1.07 a litre). And 7-Eleven and Circle K convenience stores sold a two-litre jug of milk for $4.99 ($2.50 a litre).

Doucette said the price reflects the cost of milk landed at the store.

The Field Agent study used data collected from a network of mobile phone users and from 185 stores across Canada between May 7 to June 20 in 20 markets.

Regina milk prices averaged $1.36 a litre, or $5.39 for four litres of two per cent milk.


Will Aussies buy Fonterra?

A planned public listing of Fonterra’s Australian business will attract investors, including dairy farmers, claims Freshagenda analyst Steve Spencer.

However, he believes a buyout by another Australian dairy player looks unlikely due to competition issues.

An ownership review of Fonterra Australia is underway as part of the co-operative’s new strategy to add value to its New Zealand milk.

Fonterra says any option would need to consider the co-op retaining a significant stake in Australia. Options could include partnering with a strategic or financial investor.

The ownership review should be completed by the end of this year but any change to the ownership structure is still 12 months away.i

Fonterra claims the Australian business is in a strong position, not only in earnings but also reputation with its customers and importantly its farmers.

However, Spencer says investors will await the IPO documents to see how the Australian business gets carved out of the group results.

“There is not enough visibility to see that completely at this stage,” he told Rural News. “I think there will be investor appetite – depending on the pricing and performance that is laid out in an IPO.

“There are few opportunities for public and institutional investment in the food sector and the growth, depth and diversity of dairy markets is a good story.”

Spencer also expects Australian farmers, especially those who currently supply Fonterra, to be interested in buying shares.

“I’m sure there will be some interest but that will be clarified by the company in its engagement.”

But there will be few options for large players to take out this business without competition issues due to the crossover in product segments.

Spencer says Lactalis could be a potential buyer if the business suits their global business model.

“They don’t have competing opportunities in other markets – Saputo and Bega would be ruled out.”

Australian dairy consultant John Droppert believes farmers will wait and see what comes out of the ownership review.

“I suspect most suppliers will just be curious to see what comes of it and what the ongoing linkage to Fonterra global would be under any proposal,” Droppert told Rural News.

Fonterra Australia Suppliers Council chairman Alan Davenport hopes that ownership options could present opportunities to further align supplier interests.

“I look forward to working with Fonterra Australia to ensure any change to the ownership structure builds on the partnership between Fonterra Australia and its farmer suppliers,” says Davenport.

Fonterra is a market leader in Australia in butter and cheese with iconic brands like Western Star, Perfect Italiano and Bega.


Flood recovery for Mid North Coast dairy farmer

Six months ago the McGinn’s property had 360 degree lake views, cattle stood in mud and pasture was lost due to floodwaters.

But the image of their farm today on Belmore River near Kempsey is a stark contrast to what it was after the March floods devastated farmland on the Mid North Coast.

And for the first time Sue and Brett McGinn have a smile on their faces as they are finally on the road to recovery.

“It’s been a tough six months,” Sue said as she looked over her paddocks.

“It’s so overwhelming when you have an event like this.

“There is everything from cattle health to pasture reestablishment to worry about. It’s not just the workload ahead but also you need to find the money to go through the recovery phase.

“An important part of the initial recovery has been the generosity of friends and various rural aid charities in supplying donated fodder.”

Sue said the turning point came not long after the floods when the NSW government announced the $75,000 natural disaster grant, which they used entirely to feed their cattle.

Looking back Sue reflected on a difficult and long six months that was now behind them.

“We knew when the flooding occurred that we would need to wait for spring for any pasture recovery and the opportunity to feed grass again,” she said.

“We are well and truly on the road to recovery now that we can see pasture growth and the days are getting longer and warmer, which is what we were waiting for.

“When that turning point came, it felt like there was a financial future and a huge load was lifted from our tired shoulders.”

As a consequence of the muddy conditions, some of their cows contracted environmental mastitis.

But Sue said that advice from the team at Dairy Australia allowed them to be able to get on top of their milk quality as conditions improved.

“Our cows are now sending first grade milk, which is a real achievement,” she said.

Brett McGinn during the flood. Photo: Sue McGinn

Brett McGinn during the flood. Photo: Sue McGinn

The McGinns are no strangers to floods having gone through many in the past 27 years they have lived in the region.

However she said this was the worst experienced because almost all of the farm was underwater for around 10 days, starving the improved pastures of oxygen.

“Every time we experience a disaster like this we hope we never have to go through it again but we’ve learned to become more resilient by making infrastructure improvements so that we can withstand these challenges,” she said.

“As funds have allowed, we’ve built a feed pad, silage bunkers and purchased tractors and feedout wagons, which help us to control our daily feeding regime.

“This is key to producing large volumes of milk from healthy dairy cows no matter what Mother Nature dishes out.”

But in a twist of fate, Sue said; ‘the funny thing is now we need a shower, I never thought I would say that.”

The story Dairy farmer’s road to milking recovery first appeared on The Land.

Semi Tanker Crashes, Causes Major Manure Spill

Nearly 5,5000 gallons of liquid manure was spilled over the roadway last week when a semi-tractor tipped over along a highway in southern Wisconsin.

According to the Green County Sheriff’s Department, the accident happened Friday afternoon on County Highway SS in the town of Decatur.

Authorities say Jeffrey Brewer, 61, Evansville, was driving the truck when he failed to negotiate a curve, causing the rig to enter into a ditch and overturn. He suffered minor injuries in the crash.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources also responded to the scene.

Source: Wisconsin Ag Connection

Israel’s Milk Shortage Is Absurd

Israel’s dairy market suffers from two ills. The first is the fact that it’s a market that is entirely planned and controlled. The second is that it is subject to the draconian rules of kashrut, Jewish dietary law.

The dairy economy is planned from beginning to end. The price that dairy manufacturers pay farmers for raw milk is set by law. The amount of milk dairy farms produce is not a function of supply and demand on the free market. Rather, it is set every year by the agriculture minister. The order specifying the amounts is based on a recommendation from the Israel Dairy Board, which is entrusted by the state to plan the dairy market – including the setting of production quotas for the farmers.

But the market’s troubles don’t end with planning. One of the main factors in the high price of food in Israel is kashrut. The Chief Rabbinate does not permit dairies to work on the Sabbath and Jewish holidays, even if the employees are not Jewish. Since this year’s fall holidays all fell in the middle of the week, there were few production days. The result: empty supermarket shelves.

The shortage has sparked disagreement. The farmers and supporters of planning in the dairy market have blamed the problem solely on the matter of kashrut, while supporters of reforms to the dairy market argued that the shortages are evidence that the “Bolshevik” planning principle needs to be a thing of the past. The bitter truth is that both sides are correct.

For years, the farmers’ lobby and the Dairy Board have claimed that the planned market is a solution that responds to the needs of the demand and protects the farmers’ living. It’s an argument that has now been proven incorrect, certainly in a situation in which the calendar is known in advance. All of that doesn’t absolve the rabbinate and the kashrut supervision network of responsibility, however. Evidence of that is that while supermarkets in Israel have not had milk, Jews abroad could buy milk produced overseas by dairies on Shabbat and Jewish holidays.

The absurd situation with the dairy market in Israel has to stop. Granted that over the past decade, some of the quotas on dairy products have been removed following agreements between the Finance Ministry and the farmers’ lobby. But the time has come to entirely eliminate the quotas and the planning principle. Instead, the farmers should receive direct support – a model that was adopted in Europe in 2015.

At the same time, the ministers of finance, religious services and agriculture must work together with the rabbinate to permit work at the dairies on Shabbat and holidays. Even if a nonkosher dairy is not an option (meaning not financially feasible), because most supermarket chains will not sell nonkosher dairy products, production on Shabbat and holidays would ensure an orderly supply of milk to drink throughout the year. Due to the need to maintain freshness, it is very doubtful that milk itself would be feasible to import.


Judges Announced for the 2021 Holland Holstein Show

On Friday, November 26 and Saturday, November 27 2021, the Holland Holstein Show will be held in the IJsselhallen in Zwolle. We are proud that renowned judges worldwide are happy to judge at our show. We have again succeeded in attracting absolute top judges for this edition of the Holland Holstein Show.

Mark Nutsford is from Cheshire (UK) and with his wife Susan he owns Riverdane Holsteins, where they milk 230 cows. They showed their cows at many shows through the whole UK and won many titles. Mark has judged in more than 20 countries, with the European Holstein judging in Libramont 2019 as the highlight. In 2013, Mark judged the Red Holsteins at the HHH show as well as the conformation of the Young Breeders heifers.

Mark indicated that the HHH show is one of the top 3 shows he ever wanted to judge. This year he will judge clipping, showmanship and conformation at the Young Breeders show. On Saturday, he will put the Holstein cows in line. Mark is once again looking forward to the fantastic interaction with the audience, which he says is due to the fact that the best animals are lined up last.

Thomas Ender and his brother own Hellender Holsteins in Switzerland. A large part of the 35 Holstein and Red Holstein cows at Hellender are taken to shows regularly. In addition to the company at home, Thomas is part-time Chief classifier at the Swiss herdbook. He judged in several European countries and is now active in the Netherlands for the first time. On their own farm, they strive for balanced, typical, harmonious cows with excellent udders. Mark also looks for this in the cows that will be shown at the HHH show.

Albertine Racer Palthe runs dairy farm ‘Het Teussink’ in De Lutte together with her husband Gert-Jan and their 2 children. Her interest in Holstein breeding and the preparation of show animals originated in the USA during an internship at the former Indianhead Holsteins farm. She clipped animals for several European breeding companies and presented them at shows and auctions. Albertine was an instructor for the Dutch-speaking groups at the Young Breeders School in Battice (Belgium) for a number of years. She was one of the founders of the HHH Young Breeders. She judged a number of regional showmanship competitions in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Slovenia. Albertine is curious about the progression the Young Breeders have made and is especially looking forward to the juniors.

Maine’s Dairy Farms Need Our Support

Dairy farms play a keystone role in Maine’s agricultural economy and Danone/Horizon Organic’s recent decision to end contracts with 89 farms across the Northeast, including 14 farms in Maine, leaves these farm families, the land they steward, and the future of our regional dairy industry vulnerable.

In response to Danone’s withdrawal, MFT is partnering with organizations across the state including Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry (DACF), University of Maine Cooperative Extension, Maine Organic Milk Producers (MOMP), MOFGA, and Maine Dairy Industry Association (MDIA) to assess the situation and support farmers. This task force will provide support to the 14 farms through three working groups focused on retirement and farm succession, finding alternative markets, and financial planning. MFT’s Nina Young and Sarah Simon are participating in the working groups to help to direct impacted farmers to MFT’s resources.

Dairy farms have long been a consistent agricultural and economic force in Maine. In many rural communities, dairy farms act as engines for the local economy and provide the necessary threshold of business for local veterinarians, feed stores, machinery suppliers, and other services all farms rely upon. In short, our communities need dairy farms, and our dairy farms need us!

Dig deeper: Read MFT’s 2020 Dairy Sector Report for a deep dive into the many challenges Maine dairy farmers are facing daunting challenges that threaten the stability of the sector. This report provides a historical perspective and contemporary analysis of these challenges. It also presents some opportunities for policy and market interventions that could help to stabilize the Maine dairy sector and enhance its future viability.

You can support Maine dairy farmers by choosing to buy locally produced milk, cheese, yogurt, butter, and ice cream. And your support of our work at MFT means that we can respond quickly to the emerging needs of farmers in times like these.


Milk Futures Push Higher in Chicago Tuesday

Milk futures on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange continued higher Tuesday following strength in cash markets.  Class III milk continued a slow grind higher. October up 1 at $18.21, November up 14 cents at $18.56, and November up 10 cents at $18.11/cwt. 2022 was 5-19 cents higher and first half is averaging at 17.87/cwt. Class IV milk was quieter with 2021 months holding unchanged. October at 16.86, November at 17.29, and December at 17.41.

The CME spot trade took this information and was up slightly across the board. Dry whey up $0.0050 at $0.59. Blocks up $0.01 at $1.8075. Two sales were made at $1.8075 to $1.8075. Barrels up $0.0025 at $1.7925. One trade was made at that price. Butter unchanged at $1.69. Nonfat dry milk up $0.0175 at $1.4175. Five trades were made from $1.41 to $1.42.

Global Dairy Trade Event 293 was even to two weeks prior. Almost every product traded withing 1 % of last trade. Butter milk powder saw the largest gain up nearly 10 percent. Fractional gains and losses were reported for most other categories.

Shakira Shakes Her Way to Supreme Champion

A crowd favorite, Erbacres Snapple Shakira-ET, rose to the top of World Dairy Expo as the 2021 Supreme Champion on Saturday, October 2. Shakira is owned by Ferme Jacobs, Ty-D Holsteins, Theraulaz, and Ferme Antelimarck of Cap-Sante, Quebec, Canada. Her winning streak began on Saturday with wins in the International Holstein Show including the first-place Six-Year-Old and Older Cow, Senior Champion and Grand Champion. Taking the title of Reserve Supreme Champion of World Dairy Expo was the Grand Champion of the International Brown Swiss Show, Cutting Edge Thunder Faye, owned by Ken Main and Kenny Joe Manion of Copake, New York.

Dorloy-K Guinness-Red-ET owned by Kenlee Philips of Lingleville, Texas, was named the Supreme Champion Heifer after claiming the Junior Champion title during Thursday’s International Red & White Show. The Reserve Supreme Champion Heifer title went to the Junior Champion of the International Jersey Show, SVHeaths Kid Rock Jaden, owned by Vierra Dairy Farms of Hilmar, California.

Companies sponsoring the awards presented to Expo’s Supreme Champions include: Agpro, Inc., Ameriprint Apparel, LLC, Arethusa Farm, BouMatic, E-Zee Milking Equipment, LLC, Golden Calf Company, International Protein Sires, TLAY Dairy Video Sales, Trans Ova Genetics, and World Dairy Expo.

Serving as the meeting place of the global dairy industry, World Dairy Expo brings together the latest in dairy innovation and the best cattle in North America. The dairy industry returned to Madison, Wis. for the 54th event, September 28 – October 2, 2021, when the world’s largest dairy-focused trade show, dairy and forage seminars, world-class dairy cattle show and more will be on display. Download the World Dairy Expo mobile event app, visit or follow WDE on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Spotify, Instagram or YouTube for more information.

Red & White Champions Stand Victorious in the WDE Junior Show

The Red & White Champions stood victorious at the end of World Dairy Expo 2021 in the Junior Show. Scenic-Edge Jordan-Red, exhibited by Jacey and Hadley Ross of Delavan, Wisconsin was crowned Supreme Champion of the Junior Show at World Dairy Expo 2021 on Saturday, October 2. The Supreme Champion Heifer of the Junior Show was Dorloy-K Guinness-Red-ET, the Junior Champion of the International Junior ­­­­­Red & White Show. Guinness, the first place Winter Heifer Calf, was exhibited by Kenlee Philips of Lingleville, Texas.

Reserve Supreme Champion of the Junior Show honors were awarded to Homeridge T Annette, the Grand Champion of the International Junior Jersey Show. Annette is owned by K&D Nickels, T Freson, M Sell and S Stanford of Watertown, Wisconsin. The Reserve Supreme Champion Heifer of the Junior Show was Pit-Crew Formula Tawny, the Junior Champion of the International Junior Brown Swiss Show. Tawny is leased and exhibited by Abby Foss and owned by Pit-Crew Genetics of Cambridge, Minnesota.

Companies sponsoring awards presented to Expo’s Supreme Champions of the Junior Show include: Ameriprint Apparel LLC, BouMatic, Duane T. Cole, DDS., Ebert Enterprises LLC, Frenchville Trailer Sales, Golden Calf Company, International Protein Sires, LLC, Linda Hellenbrand, New Holland, Scott and Nikki Culbertson, Select Sires Inc., TLAY Dairy Video Sales, and Udder Comfort, Inc.

Serving as the meeting place of the global dairy industry, World Dairy Expo brings together the latest in dairy innovation and the best cattle in North America. The dairy industry returned to Madison, Wis. for the 54th event, September 28 – October 2, 2021, when the world’s largest dairy-focused trade show, dairy and forage seminars, world-class dairy cattle show and more will be on display. Download the World Dairy Expo mobile event app, visit or follow WDE on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Spotify, Instagram or YouTube for more information.

Jordan Impresses Judges at International Junior Red & White Show

Scenic-Edge Jordan-Red claimed the Grand Champion and Intermediate Champion honors at the International Junior Red & White Show. Jordan took home the $500 Udder Comfort Grand Champion Cash Award and the Lillian & Keith King & Jim King Grand Champion of the Junior Show Award. Jordan was the winning Junior Three-Year-Old Cow, exhibited by Jacey and Hadley Ross of Delavan, Wisconsin. Reserve Grand Champion was Cache-Valley Db Haizley-Red, the Reserve Intermediate Champion and first-place Summer Junior Two-Year-Old Cow. Haizley was exhibited by Xander Harris of Richmond, Utah and received the Lillian & Keith King & Jim King Reserve Grand Champion of the Junior Show Award.

Rounding out the cow champion lineup were Senior Champion ZBW-Ziems Listen To Me-Red and Reserve Senior Champion of the Junior Show Hol-Star Malo Roz-Red-ET. Listen To Me was Champion Bred and Owned of the Junior Show, exhibited by Mason Ziemba of Durhamville, New York. Roz was exhibited by Connor Correia of Tulare, California and won the 125,000 Lb. Production Cow Class of the Junior Show.

Junior Champion, Dorloy-K Guinness-Red-ET, was shown by Kenlee Phillips of Lingleville, Texas. Guinness was the first-place Winter Heifer Calf. Betley Unstp Lionize-Red-ET, the second-place Winter Heifer Calf and Reserve Junior Champion, was exhibited by Claire and Jacob Betley of Pulaski, Wisconsin.

Placing a total of 137 animals in the International Junior Red & White Show was official judge Pierre Boulet of Montmagny, Quebec, Canada and associate judge Richard Landry of Ste-Brigitte-des-Saults, Quebec, Canada.

Complete class results can be found at

Serving as the meeting place of the global dairy industry, World Dairy Expo brings together the latest in dairy innovation and the best cattle in North America. The dairy industry will return to Madison, Wis. for the 54th event, September 28 – October 2, 2021, when the world’s largest dairy-focused trade show, dairy and forage seminars, world-class dairy cattle show and more will be on display. Download the World Dairy Expo mobile event app, visit or follow WDE on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Spotify, Instagram or YouTube for more information.