Dairy Business News Team's Posts (976)

Center for Dairy Excellence to Host Mealtime Meetings


Harrisburg, Pa. – The Center for Dairy Excellence will host five mealtime meetings across Pennsylvania to collect feedback and input on resources to direct the future of the state’s dairy industry. The center invites dairy industry professionals to participate in an informal discussion about dairy profitability and associated topics and an introduction to programs available through the center to assist dairy farmers.

“With challenges facing Pennsylvania’s dairy industry, both at the farm level and in the marketplace, we want to hear from agri-business professionals on what’s needed to support a viable industry,” said Jayne Sebright, executive director of the Center for Dairy Excellence. “We are also looking forward to sharing insight on the resources and programs available to help farms work through this period of change.” 

Field representatives, nutrition consultants, lending agents and all industry representatives are invited to prepare topics which they would like to discuss, from business planning to dairy policy. Center staff members will be joined by representatives from American Dairy Association North East and agents with the Penn State Extension Dairy Team, who will speak to current trends and topics in Pennsylvania’s dairy industry. 

Meetings will be hosted on the following dates:

·   May 12 at 8:00 a.m., Dutchway, 649 E Lincoln Avenue, Myerstown, PA.

·   May 16 at 8:00 a.m., Country Cupboard, 101 Hafer Road, Lewisburg, PA

·   May 16 at 1 p.m., Riverstone Inn, 47 Leisure Drive, Towanda, PA

·   May 19 at 8:00 a.m., Bird’s Nest Cafe, 113 S Richard St., Bedford, PA

·   May 19 at 1 p.m., Hoss’s Steak and Sea House, 1948 Leesburg Grove City Road, PA

Pre-registration is requested by Monday, May 8. Meals are provided for up to three participants per meeting location from each group or business, courtesy of the Center for Dairy Excellence. To register, call 717-346-0849 or visit the “Programs and Events” tab oncenterfordairyexcellence.org.

Jayne Sebright, executive director for the Center for Dairy Excellence, leads the discussion at a previous Industry Roundtable meeting in Williamsport.

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Zepp to Review Market Fundamentals at Noon on April 26


Harrisburg, Pa. – The Center for Dairy Excellence’s monthly “Protecting Your Profits” call will be held Wednesday, April 26, at noon. The call will be led by Alan Zepp, risk management program manager with the center.

Why are milk prices softening? When will they recover? Join the Center for Dairy Excellence for a brief discussion on the fundamentals behind this change. Zepp will also discuss LGM-Dairy and Margin Protection Program results, as well as marketing plan possibilities.

All are welcome to participate at no cost in the upcoming “Protecting Your Profits” conference call. To register and obtain the conference line information please call 717-346-0849, or email Melissa Anderson at manderson@centerfordairyexcellence.org.

The call will start promptly at noon and last approximately 15 minutes. The calls are recorded and posted on the Center for Dairy Excellence website under the “Dairy Information” tab for those who are unable to join the live session.

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ARLINGTON, VA – As discussions over immigration policy continue on Capitol Hill, the National Milk Producers Federation today thanked members of both the House and Senate for working to address the unique labor challenges faced by dairy producers. NMPF has called on legislators to address this dilemma for more than a decade.

“We welcome these bipartisan efforts to shine a light on an issue so critical to dairy producers,” said NMPF President and CEO Jim Mulhern. “Dairy farming is a physically demanding, 24-7, 365-day job. Without the help of foreign labor, many American dairy operations face the threat of closure. We appreciate that members of both parties are building awareness of the need for action on this challenge.” 

Two bills introduced recently would modify the existing H-2A agricultural visa program to make it easier for dairy farmers to hire the foreign labor they need to run their operations. Reps. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) and Chris Collins (R-NY) co-authored the Farm Family Relief Act in January. Rep. Sean Duffy’s (R-WI) introduced the Defending the Agricultural Industry’s Requirements Year-round (DAIRY) Act this month.

Separately, during a Senate Agriculture Committee hearing to confirm the next USDA Secretary, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) questioned nominee Sonny Perdue about finding a solution to the industry’s immigration concerns. Perdue said he supports an exemption to the H-2A program so that dairy farms can hire workers year-round.

In addition to working closely with these and other members of Congress, NMPF remains engaged on the issue of immigration through its leadership in the Agriculture Workforce Coalition (AWC). The AWC continues to raise awareness with officials on Capitol Hill about the challenges facing the agriculture industry, specifically that of labor shortages and the role of immigrants in filling those jobs.

NMPF and the AWC have long supported immigration security and reform measures with the caveat that any proposal also includes avenues to protect current workers and enable a smooth transition to a visa program for future ones.

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Select Sires Home to Top Young Sires

PLAIN CITY, Ohio, April 17, 2017—Select Sires continues to offer the best genomic young sires with the top 14 GTPI® sires on Holstein Association USA’s Genomic Young Bulls list including Super Samplers™ 7HO13250 JEDI (+2867) and new release 507HO13607 MAGICTOUCH (+2820). 7HO12600 MODESTY (+2802) and 507HO13576 KNIGHT (+2791) rank in the list’s top 20. MODESTY is the No. 3 young sire for Net Merit (NM$) at +977 while 7HO12788 FRAZZLED (+939), 7HO12943 CURRY (+921) and 7HO12821 EVEREST (+909) rank in the top 20. Select Sires is home to nearly half (22) of the top 50 active young sires for NM$.

There are 42 Super Samplers and GenerVations young sires that transmit more than 150 pounds of Combined Fat and Protein (CFP) including breed leader 250HO13267 DUKE (+202). Other top-15 CFP sires include CURRY (+185) and 507HO13504 JAGUAR (+181). DUKE (+115), JAGUAR (+112), 7HO12811 LOPEZ (+109) and 7HO12901 HAD ME (+109) are top-15 Fat sires and JEDI (+89), DUKE (+87), CURRY (+80) and 7HO13284 LONESTAR (+79) are among the best for Protein.  

Showcase Selections™ young sires occupy four of the top spots for Type: 7HO12922 DELIGHT is the new No. 1 Type sire at +4.33, new release 550HO12961 DOC ranks third at +3.91, 250HO12589 JACOBY is fifth (+3.90) and 7HO12921 WILSON is No. 7 at +3.84. 7HO12353 BEEMER (+3.65) and 7HO12593 UNION (+3.56) are top-20 Type sires as well. DELIGHT (+3.60) is the No. 2 active young sire for Udder Composite (UDC) and JACOBY (+3.31) is in the top 15, while DELIGHT (+2.80) and BEEMER (+2.78) are top-10 Feet and Leg Composite (FLC) young sires.

Wellness Leaders

Select Sires has designated the highest Wellness Trait Index™ (WT$™) sires as WellnessPRO™ sires. This index focuses on six wellness traits (mastitis, lameness, metritis, retained placenta, displaced abomasum and ketosis) and includes an economic value for Polled test results. 7HO12556 PAGEONE (+337), 7HO12929 SLY (+319), 7HO12773 KENOSHA (+265), 7HO13505 PAPA P (+254), 7HO12782 BONJOUR (+252), 7HO13573 MANNLEY (+249) and 7HO12482 GAYLORD-P (+248) are not only the top WT$ sires at Select, but also rank among the breed’s top 20.

Dairy Wellness Profit Index™ (DWP$™) is a multi-trait selection index which includes production, fertility, type, longevity and wellness traits. There are 11 genomic young sires at Select Sires that exceed +1,050 DWP$ including FRAZZLED (+1,133), MAGICTOUCH (+1,132), PAGEONE (+1,122), MODESTY (+1,097), 7HO13573 MANNLEY (+1,090), 7HO13492 CONQUEST (+1,083), CURRY (+1,067), 7HO12886 CANNON (+1,066), JAGUAR (+1,064) and SLY (+1,062).

7HO12884 OPTION is a top-15 young sire for Somatic Cell Score (SCS) at 2.47, 7HO12797 LEGENDARY (+10.1) ranks in the top five for Productive Life (PL), 7HO12236 BAYONET is among the top 15 for Livability (LIV) at +4.8 and LEGENDARY (+5.2) and 7HO12882 ROUNDROCK (+4.8) are top-10 sires for Heifer Conception Rate (HCR).

Fertility frontrunners

Select’s Super Sampler and GenerVations young sire lineups contain 20 sires that exceed +3.0 for Sire Conception Rate (SCR) including the No. 2 young sires in the breed, 7HO12667 BORIS-RED and 7HO12832 SEATTLE at +4.8. 7HO13281 MILLER-P (+4.2), 7HO12777 ROZWELL (+4.1), 7HO13276 BOWEN (+4.0), 7HO12834 SATCHEL (+3.8), BONJOUR (+3.7) and 7HO13461 REMINGTON (+3.7) are among the best in the breed for SCR.

To view Select Sires’ complete Holstein lineup, visit www.selectsires.com or contact your Select Sires sales representative. 


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

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New Prague, Minn. (April 17, 2017) – Dairy industry professionals have until April 30 to nominate dairy operations for the Dairy Cattle Reproduction Council (DCRC) Reproduction Awards program. This program recognizes outstanding dairy operations for reproductive efficiency and well-implemented management procedures.

Key metrics for evaluating nominations include voluntary waiting period, interbreeding intervals, heat detection, conception rate, pregnancy rate, value of reproduction and culling rate. Reproduction numbers are based on the 12-month period Jan. 1, 2016-Dec. 31, 2016.

Dairy operations must be nominated by professionals who serve the dairy industry, such as veterinarians, extension agents, artificial insemination (AI) and pharmaceutical company representatives, dairy processor field staff and consultants. Complete nomination forms online or mail completed paper nomination forms to:

605 Columbus Ave South 

New Prague, MN 56071

Judges will review applications and select the top herds, which will be asked to provide additional information about their operation. This will help judges select Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze winners. Award recipients will be honored at the 2017 DCRC Annual Meeting in Reno, Nev., Nov. 8-9.

For more information about the Reproduction Awards program, visit www.dcrcouncil.org/awards/nominate-a-herd.aspx.

This year's award sponsors include Hoard’s Dairyman and Dairy Cattle Reproduction Council.

The Dairy Cattle Reproduction Council is focused on bringing together all sectors of the dairy industry – producers, consultants, academia and allied industry professionals – for improved reproductive performance. DCRC provides an unprecedented opportunity for all groups to work together to take dairy cattle reproduction to the next level.

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Two Truckloads of Milk Supply More than 10,000 Pounds of Cheese

for the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank


HARRISBURG, Pa. (April, 2017) – Through its DFA Cares Foundation, Dairy Farmers of America (DFA), a national farmer-owned dairy cooperative, is making good use of Northeast-area milk by providing two truckloads of milk, which were processed into 10,000 pounds of cheese, for the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  The food bank is part of the national Feeding America network. 

The donation, which was processed at Amish cheesemaker Oak Shade Cheese in Kirkwood, Pennsylvania, was picked up by representatives of the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank on Monday, March 27. The cheese will be available to agencies which provide food to more than 65,000 adults and children served by the food bank in the central Pennsylvania area. 

"As a dairy farmer, I am thrilled to see milk in the Northeast help benefit people and families who need it most," said Bill Beeman from Kingsley, Pennsylvania and a member of Dairy Farmers of America’s Northeast Council. 

Beeman said, "As a cooperative, we are committed to serving those communities where we live and work, so this is a great example of how we give back."

One in eight central Pennsylvanians, including one in five children, struggles with hunger and rely on the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank and its partner agencies for food assistance each year. Through 900 local agencies, the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank provides nearly 650,000 nutritious meals to people in need every week.

"Dairy products, like cheese, are rarely donated, due to the perishability," said Joe Arthur, executive director at Central Pennsylvania Food Bank. "With this donation, we can help provide our clients and families with not only a food that they love eating, but also one that provides nutritional benefits like calcium, protein and other important nutrients."

The cheese processing was funded through the Pennsylvania Agricultural Surplus System (PASS), an innovative program administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. PASS puts healthy and nutritious food grown by Pennsylvania farmers into the charitable food system, providing a safe, efficient method for farmers, packers and processors to be reimbursed for costs involved in harvesting, processing or packaging donated product. The Central Pennsylvania Food Bank administers the funds and works with member organizations of the state anti-hunger associations Feeding Pennsylvania and Hunger Free Pennsylvania to distribute healthy, nutritious food to Pennsylvanians in need. PASS serves all 67 counties via 3,000 individual charitable organizations in the Commonwealth.

DFA, Oak Shade Cheese, and the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank were brought together through the coordination of the American Dairy Association North East (ADA North East).

The Central Pennsylvania Food Bank donation was made possible through the DFA Cares Foundation, which was established in 2005 as a nonprofit charitable organization. Through the DFA Cares Foundation, DFA provides disaster relief via product and monetary donations, invests in the future of the industry with scholarships to students pursuing careers in dairy, and contributes dairy and food products for those in need.


Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) is a national dairy marketing cooperative that serves and is owned by more than 14,000 members on nearly 8,000 farms in 48 states. DFA also is one of the country’s most diversified manufacturers of dairy products, food components and ingredients, and is a leader in formulating and packaging shelf-stable dairy products. For more information, call 1-888-DFA-MILK (332-6455) or visit www.dfamilk.com.

Central Pennsylvania Food Bank is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to reduce hunger in 27 counties across Pennsylvania. By working with more than 900 local agencies, the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank provides nearly 650,000 nutritious meals to people in need every week. For more information on the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank and its mission to reduce hunger in Pennsylvania, visit centralpafoodbank.org or call 717.564.1700.

About American Dairy Association North East

American Dairy Association North East (ADA North East) is the local management organization funded by participating dairy farmer’s checkoff investment to build demand and sales for milk and dairy foods throughout the local region. Directed by local dairy farmers and representing more than 12,000 dairy farm families in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, New York, New Jersey and northern Virginia, ADA North East develops and implements local programs to drive milk and dairy sales at retail outlets and in schools. The organization also conducts consumer education about dairy through events, traditional and social media, and in collaboration with health professionals through National Dairy Council®. ADA North East works closely with Dairy Management Inc.™, the national dairy checkoff organization, to support nutrition research, national partnerships and developing export markets for dairy to bring a fully integrated promotion program to the region. For more information, visit www.dairyspot.com or (315) 472-9143.

Two truckloads of milk have been donated by Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) to supply more than 10,000 pounds of cheese for the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank. Left to right: DFA dairy farmer members Bill Beeman, Kingsley, Pa., Lee Ramsburg, Gettysburg, Pa., and Lolly Lesher, Bernville, Pa. 


Ten thousand pounds of cheese have been provided to Central Pennsylvania Food Bank through a partnership between the food bank, Dairy Farmers of America, Oak Shade Cheese and American Dairy Association North East. Left to right: Dairy farmer Bill Beeman, Kingsley, Pa.; John Rutherford, Dairy Farmers of America; dairy farmer Lee Ramsburg, Gettysburg, Pa.; dairy farmer Lolly Lesher, Bernville, Pa.; Joe Arthur, Central Pa. Food Bank; John Chrisman, ADA North East; and Erin Smith, Central Pa. Food Bank. 


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MADISON, WIS. – The 34th World Forage Analysis Superbowl will award more than $25,000 in cash prizes in October. This large sum is made possible by generous award sponsors including the contest’s Platinum Sponsor, Mycogen Seeds.

Held in conjunction with World Dairy Expo®, the contest is comprised of eight categories where forages are evaluated on lab and visual analysis. The Grand Champion Forage, the overall winner, will receive a check for $2,500 from Kemin, and the Grand Champion First-Time Entrant will receive a cash award of $1,500 from Kuhn North America.

Forage categories receive a top cash award of $1,500, while additional prizes are awarded to second through fourth place finishers. The categories and their sponsors include: Champion Baleage, sponsored by Agri-King; Champion Commercial Hay, sponsored by NEXGROW Alfalfa; Champion Dairy Hay, sponsored by W-L Research; Champion Grass Hay, sponsored by Barenbrug USA; Champion Organic Hay, sponsored by Blue River Hybrids Organic Seed; Champion Haylage, sponsored by Ag-Bag; Champion Standard Corn Silage, sponsored by Agrisure Traits; and Champion Brown Midrib Corn Silage, sponsored by Mycogen Seeds.

In addition to the above categories, two other awards will be given: Quality Counts Hay/Haylage and Quality Counts Corn Silage, sponsored by CROPLAN By WinField. Additional support is provided by two Silver Sponsors, The National Hay Association and Passion Ag, Inc.

All winners will be recognized at the Mycogen Seeds Awards Luncheon on Wednesday, October 4, at World Dairy Expo in Madison, Wis.

Entry forms are available by calling 920-336-4521 or visiting foragesuperbowl.org. The $30 entry fee provides entry into the contest, along with a detailed laboratory analysis of the sample. Participants may submit multiple entries. The deadline to submit corn silage entries is August 1, and for all other entries it is September 7.

The World Forage Analysis Superbowl is organized in partnership with DairyBusiness Communications, Dairyland Laboratories, Inc., Hay & Forage Grower, US Dairy Forage Research Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison and World Dairy Expo. To learn more, visit foragesuperbowl.org.


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Featuring the latest automated milking technology, the GEA Monobox offers producers innovative in-liner cow prep and milking procedures, and the fastest attachment in the industry.

Naperville, IL – April 17, 2017 – The Monobox Automated Milking System from GEA is officially released for sale in the U.S. market after being cleared by the FDA for the production of Grade A milk. 

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“At GEA, we always make milk safety and milk quality our top priorities,” explains Matt Daley, senior vice president of sales for milking and dairy farming. “We are delivering farmers some of the most advanced milking technology on the market, and we worked extensively with state agencies and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), so our customers can be confident that the milk harvested from our equipment is of the highest quality possible and meets all necessary regulatory standards for saleable Grade A milk.”

The Monobox incorporates the same robotic milk module and milk rack as GEA’s DairyProQ automated rotary – just in a box-style configuration. GEA’s unique in-liner-everything technology ensures efficient milking in one quick, uniform procedure. After attachment, each milking step – stimulation, teat cleaning, fore-stripping, milk harvest and post-dipping – is done inside the liner. With a fast milking process, cows spend less time at the milking box and more time eating and resting. Plus, it allows for more milkings per robot per day.

“The efficiency of the milking process is what takes the Monobox to the next level in automation,” says Daley. “The time of flight camera on the milk rack matches the teatcups to the teats for the fastest unit attachment in the industry. It’s an extremely efficient and proven system giving dairy farmers an automated milking option unlike anything else on the market.” 

The Monobox offers herds of any size milk harvest that is not only fast, but focuses on milk quality. High-tech sensors analyze milk color, conductivity and temperature, and the backflush process cleans and disinfects the milking unit between each cow.

“Dairy farmers continue to look towards automated milking as a solution to reduce labor expenses while maintaining a highly productive herd,” says Daley. “The Monobox rounds out the automated milking options offered by GEA to include box style configurations in addition to our robotic rotary.” 

The Monobox Automated Milking System can be seamlessly integrated into any cow traffic system and works with many different management styles. Its surface box mount makes it easy to install in new or existing barns. Maintenance is quick and convenient with the service-friendly robotic milk module. Certified Monobox dealers and GEA’s support team provide expert resources and herd management services from planning and installation to start-up and beyond. To learn more, contact your local GEA sales representative or contact GEA at 1-877-WS-Dairy (1-877-973-2479).

About GEA

GEA is one of the largest suppliers of process technology for the food industry and a wide range of other industries. The international technology group focuses on process technology and components for sophisticated production processes in various end-user markets.  In 2016, GEA generated consolidated revenues of about EUR 4.5 billion. The food and beverages sector, which is a long-term growth industry, accounted for around 70 percent. As of December 31, 2016, the group employed about 17,000 people worldwide. GEA is a market and technology leader in its business areas. The company is listed on the German MDAX stock index (G1A, WKN 660 200) and included in the STOXX® Europe 600 Index. In addition, the company is listed in selected MSCI Global Sustainability Indexes. Further information is available at gea.com.


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ARLINGTON, VA – Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) has accepted 15 requests for export assistance from member cooperatives that have contracts to sell 2.335 million pounds (1,059 metric tons) of Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses to customers in Asia, the Middle East and Oceania. The product has been contracted for delivery in the period from April through July 2017.

So far this year, CWT has assisted member cooperatives who have contracts to sell 28.432 million pounds of American-type cheeses, and 1.427 million pounds of butter (82% milkfat) to 12 countries on four continents. The sales are the equivalent of 294.464 million pounds of milk on a milkfat basis.

Assisting CWT members through the Export Assistance program in the long term helps member cooperatives gain and maintain market share, thus expanding the demand for U.S. dairy products and the U.S. farm milk that produces them. This, in turn, positively affects all U.S. dairy farmers by strengthening and maintaining the value of dairy products that directly impact their milk price.

The amounts of dairy products and related milk volumes reflect current contracts for delivery, not completed export volumes. CWT will pay export assistance to the bidders only when export and delivery of the product is verified by the submission of the required documentation.

The Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) Export Assistance program is funded by voluntary contributions from dairy cooperatives and individual dairy farmers. The money raised by their investment is being used to strengthen and stabilize the dairy farmers’ milk prices and margins. For more information about CWT, visit www.cwt.coop.

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(© Flickr Creative Commons Polyrus)

By Ian Wendrow

Researchers at Michigan State University are creating a computer model to help make pasture dairy farming more sustainable.

The project draws upon several research papers released in the past three months that discuss the environmental impact of livestock farms and how climate change affects them.........

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(© Flickr Creative Commons LivingLandscapeArchitecture)

JASPER, N.Y. (18 NEWS) - Dairy farmers are finding themselves in a pickle - they said their farms are hanging by a string due to large co-ops taking over small farms.

Dairy farming is the largest agricultural sector in New York State.  Carroll Wade, owner of Wade Farms in Jasper, New York tells 18 News: "The last two or three years, farmers have grown their production beyond what the markets will bear and so you have inadequate consumption of milk and dairy products and disappearance of the overall products on the market."  Wade also serves as the President of the National Farmers Organization in New York.

Anthony Marco owns Plain Jane Holsteins, a dairy farm in Jasper, New York and is concerned a big corporation called 'Dairy Farmers of America' will soon take over and dismiss the small farms..........

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(© Flickr Creative Commons Steve Byrne)

SKANDIA, Mich. (WLUC) - A local dairy farm was honored with a national award for milk quality. The national award for Pirman Corner Dairy Farm in Skandia was one of three awards they recently received, for their consistently high-quality milk over all of 2016.

Before the roosters are even awake, dairy farmers, like the Pirmans, are out with the herd for their first milking of the day.........

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(© Flickr Creative Commons Historic Bremen)

Three dairy farmers, all of whom use Lely Robotic Milking Systems, will open their gates later this week to share their experiences of robotic milking.

The farmers in question are located in the counties of Cork, Mayo and Waterford and each runs a unique system.

Robotic Milking With Dual-Purpose Dutch Cows

Cork-based dairy farmer Stephen Harte milks 62 MRI (Meuse Rhine Issel) cows – a dual-purpose Dutch breed – using a Lely Astronaut........

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(© Flickr Creative Commons eutrophication&hypoxia)

SARATOGA - An appeals court has blocked key parts of a proposed large-scale dairy farm that has been the subject of controversy for years in central Wisconsin, leaving both sides of the 5-year-old issue wondering what happens next.

The owners of the proposed farm, known as Golden Sands, do not have the right to use more than 6,000 acres of land for agriculture and manure spreading, according to the Wisconsin District IV Court of Appeals in a ruling issued Thursday morning.......

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(© Flickr Creative Commons Dave Young)

A Golden Bay couple is selling their dairy farm using a unique property investment strategy aimed at helping aspiring young farmers get ahead. 

Collingwood dairy farm owners, Deborah and Tim Rhodes, are stepping outside the box to turn their 135-cow dairy farm into an "armchair property investment".

An "armchair investor" is a term used to describe an investor who is hands-off and passive; enjoying the benefits of property investment from the comfort of their armchair.........

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(© Flickr Creative Commons Mark Goebel)

Suppose you get an unsigned letter, and it looks like junk mail, but the message is that in 30 days your livelihood, your home and your family’s legacy are in great peril.

That’s what happened to about 75 Wisconsin dairy farmers this month when they learned their milk buyer was dropping them, effective May 1, and they didn’t have another place to sell their highly perishable product.

These farms can’t just stop milking the cows. It’s three times a day, 365 days a year, regardless if there’s a buyer for what they produce.........

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(© Flickr Creative Commons U.S. Department of Agriculture)

U.S dairy farmers already struggling with low milk prices worry President Donald Trump's talk of renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement could harm trade to Mexico, its biggest export market.

About 15 percent of dairy production in the United States is exported with one-third valued at $1.2 billion going to Mexico in the form of milk powder, cheese and whey protein, according to the National Milk Producers Federation, which says trade with Mexico is its top priority. That's nearly double the value exported to Canada, the country's second biggest export market, according to the United States Department of Agriculture...........

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PLAIN CITY, Ohio, April 14, 2017—The Jersey lineup at Select Sires continues to offer industry-leading genetics and leaders for fertility, total performance and type in both proven and genomic young sires.

Two new proven graduates

7JE1354 TEXAS, a very popular former Super Sampler™, is a 7JE1163 IRWIN son from Heartland Nathan Texas-ET (E-95%). TEXAS is the new leader for Jersey Udder Index™ (JUI™) at Select Sires and ranks third in the breed at +31.0. Available gender SELECTed™, he is among the breed’s top 10 for Type (+2.0) and is the breed leader for Sire Conception Rate (SCR) at +4.4 which earns him the Superior Settler™ designation.


7JE1335 JORDACHE is a David son descended straight from Ten Haug E Maid (E-93%). He transmits exceptional components (+66 Fat, +0.31% Fat, +0.10% Protein) and merit values (+$446 Net Merit, +$324 Grazing Merit). A Superior Settler, he excels for SCR (+2.6) and JUI (+21.8).


Proven lineup excels

7JE1274 AXIS (+168), 7JE1331 VARICK (+163), 7JE1149 DIMENSION (+148), 7JE1275 DEMAND (+145) and 7JE1267 DEPUTY (+139)  are among the top-20 Jersey Performance Index™ (JPI™) sires without a JX prefix. AXIS (+582, +595) and VARICK (+505, +546) are top-10 NM$ and Cheese Merit (CM$) sires without a JX prefix.


Select Sires’ proven lineup also excels for health and fitness traits with five of the top 11 sires for Livability (LIV) without a JX prefix: 7JE1221 PHAROAH (+3.5), 7JE1219 OLIVER-P (+3.1), 7JE1088 COLTON (+3.1), 7JE1038 VALENTINO (+3.0)  and AXIS (+2.7). 7JE1251 METALICA (2.80), DEMAND (2.81), AXIS (2.82) and 7JE1254 JX JAMMER {4} (2.83) are among the top-15 sires for Somatic Cell Score (SCS). When all sires with the JX prefix are removed, 7JE1184 NEWS (2.85) and DEPUTY (2.86) join the top-15 for SCS.

7JE1294 BARNABAS (+2.5), OLIVER-P (+2.4), TEXAS (+2.0), VALENTINO (+2.0) and AXIS (+1.8) are among the top-15 active A.I. sires for Type. TEXAS (+31.0), BARNABAS (+27.9), COLTON (+23.6), OLIVER-P (+23.0), JORDACHE (+21.8) and 7JE1332 RENO (+21.2) are top-15 JUI sires without a JX prefix.

“7JE” sires maintain their position as fertility frontrunners with five of the breed’s top 10 sires for SCR: TEXAS (+4.4), JX JAMMER {4} (+3.5), 7JE1242 NITRO (+3.5), BARNABAS (+3.0) and RENO (+2.7). 

Super Sampler™ lineup excels

Select's Super Sampler lineup also offers outstanding SCR sires including the top six active A.I. young sires and 11 of the top 20 including Super Samplers 7JE5032 VICTORIOUS (+4.4), 7JE5015 SHOWDOWN (+4.1), 7JE1503 JX RONALDINHO {3} (+3.9), 7JE1411 WINDSTAR (+3.9), 7JE1505 JX POGBA {4} (+3.9), 7JE5020 STRIKER (+2.6) and 7JE1486 FIZZ (+2.5).

Among all young sires, JX RONALDINHO {3} is a top-10 sire for Milk (+1,760), Fat (+86) and Type (+2.3) and is the top sire for Protein (+72) and No. 2 for Combined Fat and Protein (CFP) at +158. 7JE1549 JX WAVE {3}, from the Jerseyland Sires program, is among the best for health and fitness ranking in the top 10 for SCS (2.70) and top 20 for Productive Life (PL) (+7.1).

7JE1528 DISCO (+173, +584), 7JE1545 DREW (+167, +569) and 7JE1529 DOORMAN (+162, +538) rank in the top 15 for JPI and NM$ for sires without a JX prefix. STRIKER (+1,425), 7JE1447 SEVEN (+1,258), 7JE1471 MILTON (+1,253) and 7JE1437 SANGITA (+1,248) are top-15 Milk non-JX sires and MILTON (+123) and DREW (+119) are top-five non-JX CFP sires.

DISCO (+9.6) and DOORMAN (+8.7) are the top two PL sires without a JX prefix. DOORMAN is a top-10 sire for SCS (2.74) and top-15 for Daughter Pregnancy Rate (DPR) at +2.2, Cow Conception Rate (CCR) at +3.3 and Heifer Conception Rate (HCR) at +3.3 while DISCO ranks in the top-10 for SCS (2.76) and top-15 for LIV (+2.8) for sires without a JX prefix. 7JE1516 DYNASTY is a top-15 sire for LIV (+3.0), DPR (+2.2) and CCR (+3.3).

Among sires without a JX prefix, STRIKER (+2.1), 7JE5004 CHROME (+2.1), VICTORIOUS (+2.0) and 250JE1511 WILDCAT (+2.0) are top-15 sires for Type while VICTORIOUS (+34.7), DISCO (+31.1) and WILDCAT (+29.7) are top-10 JUI sires. 


For the complete list of Select Sires' Jersey lineup, please visit www.selectsires.com or contact your Select Sires sales representative.


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

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bovine tuberculosis, on-site test results, Biomarker-based assay, bovine TB, On-the-range detection technology,
(© Flickr Creative Commons Laboratorio diagnostica ancona IZSUM)

Biomarker-based assay offers ranchers immediate, on-site test results


LOS ALAMOS, N.M., April 12, 2017--A research breakthrough allowing the first direct, empirical, blood-based, cow-side test for diagnosing bovine tuberculosis (TB) could spare ranchers and the agriculture industry from costly quarantines and the mass slaughter of animals infected with this easily spread disease.

"We have adapted an assay originally developed for human TB to bovine TB, a particular challenge because the bovine disease is caused by a different species of the pathogen," said Harshini Mukundan, leader of the Chemistry for Biomedical Applications team at Los Alamos National Laboratory that developed the assay and corresponding author on the study, published this week in the journal Analytical Sciences.

"We have validated the assay in cows that were positive controls of a vaccination study done at the US Department of Agriculture, tested at different time points during the course of infection. This work supports the global One Health strategy -- developing diagnostics that are not host limited," Mukundan said.

TB is one of the oldest known diseases, and it infects both animals and humans. In cattle, Mycobacterium bovis causes the disease, which easily spreads among large herds, periodically resulting in the quarantine and destruction of thousands of cattle in the United States, Canada and abroad and restricting international shipments. It also infects wild deer and elk, which can pass it on to domestic cattle with which they graze. A skin test to detect exposure or infection is used in cattle, but due to various colors of cows' skin and hide, environmental exposures, previous testing for M. bovis and other factors, the visual assessment can be inconclusive. Further, Mukundan notes, gathering a herd once for testing and then again 48 hours later for reading the skin results can be a challenge in itself.

The idea for the bovine application evolved from discussions between Laboratory researchers and scientists at the New Mexico health laboratory, who recognized the need for rapid detection by ranchers seeking to ship their herds. "It's one of these things that took on a life of its own," Mukundan said. The conversations eventually included a request from the New Mexico Livestock Board's state veterinarian at the time, David Fly, who reached out to the New Mexico Small Business Assistance program (which involves Los Alamos and Sandia national laboratories). Mukundan's team responded, collaborating with a number of interested ranchers in the state.

Infection of humans with M. tuberculosis can be recognized in blood by a biomarker called lipoaribinomannan (LAM), but it has been difficult to detect because LAM is a lipid, a greasy molecule that doesn't blend with the watery blood and so eludes regular testing techniques. Targeting the body's fat transport system, the lipoproteins (such as HDL and LDL measured for cholesterol analysis) allowed the researchers to measure LAM in blood.

To detect it, the Los Alamos team has developed a novel assay - lipoprotein capture - which exploits the interaction of LAM with host lipoproteins and can thereby detect it in blood. Combined with a highly sensitive waveguide-based optical biosensor for the rapid, sensitive and specific detection of pathogenic biomarkers, the team has effectively identified greasy biomarkers associated with diseases like tuberculosis, food poisoning, leprosy and others.

In cattle, the TB infection M. bovis secretes a similar biomarker called lipomannan (LM). The team adapted the human assay to target LM, thereby suggesting the possibility of a molecular cow-side test for bovine TB.

Key outcomes from the research include the following:

  • The team can directly measure pathogen biomarkers in bovine blood, which allows medical specialists to discriminate between simple exposure and actual infection.
  • This is the first profile of the LM biomarker in bovine blood over a full one-year time period.
  • The same assays applied to humans can thus be transitioned to assessing cattle, elephants and other species, supporting a global One Health strategy for diagnosis.

Research such as the TB detection project aligns with the Laboratory's national security science mission in providing innovative tools for improving responses to emerging threats to health. In addition to Mukundan, the team includes Dung Vu of Los Alamos, Rama Sakamuri (a post-doctoral fellow who has since left Los Alamos) and Basil Swanson and Ray Waters from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA).

What's next? "We are hoping to work with the New Mexico Livestock Board and the USDA to evaluate infected animals in the real world," Mukundan said.

"It will be wonderful if the assay can be adapted to a rapid cow-side test that can be used by ranchers and farmers to effectively diagnose bovine TB. I am especially interested in providing something concrete to farmers and veterinarians in our state, the New Mexico Livestock Board and the USDA, all of whom require such a test," she said.

The paper: "Detection of Lipomannan in Cattle Infected with Bovine Tuberculosis," Dung M. Vu*, Rama M. Sakamuri*, W. Ray Waters**, Basil I. Swanson*, and Harshini Mukundan*

* Chemistry Division, MS J567, Los Alamos National Laboratory,

**National Animal Disease Center, Agriculture Research Service, US Department of Agriculture, Ames, IA

Videos about Dr. Mukundan's work:

TEDx Los Alamos talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7BxTbjtI8qo


and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=stTukjqyVOY (video courtesy of New Mexico Tech Council).

Funding: This work was supported by funding from the New Mexico Small Business Assistance (NMSBA) program (http://www.nmsbaprogram.org/), the US Department of Agriculture and the Los Alamos Research and Development (LDRD), Directed Research Program. Ranchers and veterinarians in the state of New Mexico supported this work via NMSBA. The Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) supported the effort by providing required antibodies for the detection.

About the CDC's One Health program: https://www.cdc.gov/onehealth/global-activities/index.html

About Bovine TB, from USDA: http://bit.ly/2o2HZCL

About Los Alamos National Laboratory

Los Alamos National Laboratory, a multidisciplinary research institution engaged in strategic science on behalf of national security, is operated by Los Alamos National Security, LLC, a team composed of Bechtel National, the University of California, BWX Technologies, Inc. and URS Corporation for the Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration.

Los Alamos enhances national security by ensuring the safety and reliability of the U.S. nuclear stockpile, developing technologies to reduce threats from weapons of mass destruction, and solving problems related to energy, environment, infrastructure, health and global security concerns.

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ADC Applauds Rep Sean Duffy for Ensuring 
A Workforce for Dairy Farmers
The dairy farmers represented by the American Dairy Coalition (ADC) are elated with U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI), co-chair of the Congressional Dairy Farm Caucus, for his leadership in introducing a new immigration reform policy for dairy operations. 
The new legislation — known as the DAIRY Act — will help to provide a reliable labor force, ensuring dairy producers have the workers necessary to care for their animals as well as provide healthy and affordable dairy products to our nation and across the globe. 

ADC highly supports the efforts of Rep. Duffy in his work to allow the dairy industry to utilize the H2-A visa program.  Previously, the dairy industry was excluded due to its 365-day-a-year need for labor. Dairy farmers have been waiting for a provision to utilize the H2-A visa category to legally employ immigrant workers to fill important roles thatdomestic workers continually pass up. The H2-A visa is a vital tool to provide year-round labor for dairy operations.

The American Dairy Coalition has worked diligently on several immigration reform bills, which each representing various tools dairy farmers can utilize to access the labor so desperately needed to ensure they can successfully maintain their businesses.  ADC will work hard with Rep Duffy to move this bill over the finish line. 

About the American Dairy Coalition:  
The American Dairy Coalition is the united voice of the dairy, agriculture and livestock industry. Successful policy making, in order to best serve this industry, starts in Washington DC. We focus only on top priority issues in order to remain nimble and quickly adapt to the ever changing federal policy making environment. ADC is the only national organization solely focused on advocating to advance the growth and success of progressive producers and agriculture companies.  ADC has collaborated with many groups and individuals to make a significant impact on the agriculture industry.  
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