Randy Blodgett has been a busy blogger for us! Capturing & posting pictures from the PA Holstein Convention as they happen! Remember to keep checking HERE throughout today and tomorrow as he continues to keep us up to date with all the happenings in Allentown!
Archive for February, 2009
Lindsey Worden of Holstein Association USA is once again serving as a guest blogger for us during Phase III of YDLI for Class 6. Below is her first post…
Young Dairy Leaders Institute (YDLI) – Thursday, February 26
Phase III for Class 6 of Young Dairy Leaders Institute (YDLI) is currently taking place in Albuquerque, N.M. The class has already completed Phase I, which met last February in Albuquerque, and Phase II, which has taken place over the past year, during which participants focused on making contacts within their communities and working on a personal action project, which they established during Phase I. Phase III is taking place Wednesday, February 25th – Saturday, February 28th.
Class members arrived in Albuquerque on Wednesday and had the chance to tour Old Town Albuquerque to take in a bit of the local flavor, and visit Petroglyph National Monument, home to several ancient stone carvings. With daytime temperatures hovering in the 70’s, many took advantage of the opportunity to get out of the hotel and learn more about the Southwestern culture. Wednesday evening marked the official start of the program with a welcome mixer, allowing everyone time to catch up and get re-acquainted.
Thursday morning held the first of the training sessions. YDLI Coach Michele Payn-Knoper kicked off the program and brought up several topics, such as many of the undercover anti-agriculture videos that have come up over the past year, that helped everyone re-focus and realize why it’s so important for the dairy industry to speak with a strong, united voice, and for producers to get out and tell their story.
Next, several class members reported on what they had accomplished during Phase II, with some very impressive results. Some examples of Phase II projects include:
Brett Barlass, Hilmar, Calif., and Megan Pierce, Newman, Calif., are working to inform and provide resources to college dairy professors at over 70 universities, to help them realize the importance of and incorporate ag advocacy training into their classes.
Allison Specht, Washington, D.C., compiled a resource guide that contains dairy statistics from USDA’s 2007 Ag Census, to help dairy advocates express the impact that the dairy industry has on their county and state.
Michelle Ramaeker, Mountain Grove, Mo., developed an informational panel for dairy producers in her area, with included experts in several areas that were of interest to the producers in here area. This allowed the dairymen to come together, discuss and share ideas, which helped them learn about the latest technology and trends and address issues that impacted everyone.
Following the first round of class reports was a workshop presented by Cynthia D’Amour, which focused on developing skills that are essential to recruiting volunteers, targeting hot buttons, and making the most out of individuals’ skills to allow everyone involved to find meaning and value in volunteer work. She also discussed techniques that are important to running efficient board meetings, and making the most out of board members’ time and skills.
To follow up on the intensive media training that participants received during Phase I, Thursday afternoon featured advanced training provided by David Pelzer of Dairy Management Inc. and Joan Horbiak. Class members were faced with angry citizens at a mock public meeting and had to speak carefully to project a positive image for the dairy industry and tactfully answer questions from consumers and the media.
Friday’s agenda includes training in conflict management and animal welfare issues. A highlight of the day will be the highly-anticipated panel discussion focusing on animal rights. YDLIers will also learn more about the consumer perspective in on-the-street consumer interviews. Check back tomorrow for more coverage from YDLI in Albuquerque, N.M.!
Jason and Holly Pullis of Earlville, NY are proud to announce that Owen Charles Pullis was born yesterday (2/25/09) afternoon. He is 21″ long and weighed 8 lbs. 15 ounces. Everyone is doing fine and Max his thrilled with his new brother! Congratulations!
The 2009 PA Holstein Convention stated this morning. Randy Blodgett is there blogging the events as they happen! The photos below are some of the early-action from today. For more pictures and information as they happen – click HERE!
The 2009 Silent Sale Kicked off this morning with 20 lots of embryo’s and Picks from From Pennsylvania’s Finest Families as well as out of state favorites. Here Dave Lentz finishes up the set-up!
Each day of the week I receive an e-mail news alert from Google when anything is published online with the word “dairy” in it. For weeks now, many of the articles have been focusing on how steeply milk prices have dropped and how more and more dairy farmers are feeling the squeeze. While all of the articles from across the country have much the same message, some do a better job than others when it comes to portraying the dairy farmer in a positive light. I found this article to do just that. And it just so happens that Joe Engel of Luck-E Holsteins was quoted in it.
Joe points out an important advantage that he’s looking to during these low milk prices – the marketability of Registered genetics. If you’re in the business of breeding and marketing cattle, look towards this area to help you through the tough milk price times. 2008 was a record year for Holsteins sales. In fact, we saw the highest average price ever! Of the 6,870 animals reported to Holstein World as being sold, the average price was $6,149. This is $1744 higher than the average in 2007 and $2262 higher than the average in 2006. While we most likely won’t see record prices in 2009, we will certainly see solid prices paid at auction. For a complete look at Holstein World’s year-end sale analysis, click here.
Dairy farms milking cows for all they’re worth
Price per gallon fell 35 percent in two months
By Carolyn Starks | Tribune reporter
February 25, 2009
Dairy farmer Linnea Kooistra is pampering her cows because with the sour economy, she needs to milk them for all they’re worth. That means indulging 500 bovines with pedicures, sand beds and fine cuisine.
“As we take care of the animals, they take care of us,” she said while a pedicurist worked on the herd on her northern Illinois spread. “It’s one of the joys of being a dairy farmer.”
There hasn’t been much joy lately as milk prices have plummeted 35 percent in the last two months. The price a farmer could get for milk has dropped to $10.78 per 100 pounds from $15.28.
For Kooistra and her husband, grueling 15-hour workdays end with the realization that they lost money.
“You try to get the most milk you can out of each cow to limit the negative effects, the losses,” said Kooistra of Woodstock. “We keep her happy so she gives us more milk. She is the goose that lays the golden egg.”
Among milk producing states, Illinois is ranked 20th with 1,000 dairy farms. Many of the 60,000 dairy farms in the United States are cutting costs, selling cows or leaving the business altogether because they can’t keep up with operating costs, experts say.
In hard times, farmers reduce their herds to pay the bills. Nationally, 315,000 dairy cows were sent to slaughter in the first five weeks of this year, the highest number during that period since 1997.
The reason for the sudden, steep drop is simply too much milk and not enough demand as consumers cut back on eating out and buying high-end cheese, said Jim Fraley, manager of the Illinois Milk Producers’ Association.
Dairy exports also are down sharply because other nations are not buying milk, said Fraley, who calls dairy farmers eternal optimists.
“Milk is a very cyclical product,” he said. “They know prices will return.”
Joe Engel, 27, who chose to stay on his family’s Hampshire dairy farm after some of his older brothers left, is counting on it. When milk prices began to drop, Engel said he knew they would lose money and that they needed to stay above water in hopes next year will be better. He’s looking to other parts of his business—prized heifers or bulls or the embryos to sell in international markets.
He said the farm’s milk check is $650 less a day compared with the average price the farm got for milk last year.
“Right now, it’s so extreme that the check you get for your milk doesn’t cover the cost for turning the power on,” he said. “For the average cow, you’re losing money owning her because milk prices are so low, not because she’s not performing.
“The reason you keep her is that hopefully the situation gets better.”
At her farm in Woodstock, Kooistra said consumers would marvel at the pampering that goes into producing a gallon of milk. Hers is sold to Dean Foods Co., one of the country’s largest dairy processors.
Because cows stand on cement, pedicures help keep their feet healthy so they can stand longer and eat more, which produces more milk. The sand beds are the ultimate mattresses for keeping their appetites ravenous, she said.
A nutritionist analyzes their food for nutrient content and makes adjustments if needed to boost production.
“During times like this, we’re going on faith,” Kooistra said. “We’ve weathered storms before, we’ll get through this.”
* I came across this article online this morning. To check out the Chicago Tribune where it is found, click here.
Congratulations to Adam & Lacy Van Exel, Lodi, CA on their new baby girl born yesterday – Madison Ann Van Exel! Madison weighed in at 8 lbs. 2 oz. and was 19 inches long. Adam and Lacy both work on Van Exel Dairy, Lodi, CA along with proud grandparents Hank & Carolyn Van Exel.
The 2009 edition of the Ohio Holstein Convention was kicked off on Friday, February 13th with the Holstein USA Regional Winter Forum held at the Hampton Inn, Marysville, Ohio. As the day continued, the crowd continued to grow! The District 13 Holstein Club hosted the 2009 convention and activities which included tours of five of the areas elite herds along with a tag sale at each stop. In addition, the tour hosts also rolled out the red carpet for their visitors with a variety of culinary treats at their respective stops. Farm stops included Oakvale Farm, London; Nelson Dairy, Urbana; Plain View Farm, West Liberty; Stan-Mar-Dale/Express, Urbana; and Triple-T Holsteins, North Lewisburg.
The tour was well attended with unofficial counts over 100 guests! Last count was close to 40 cars at Triple-T on Friday evening!
Valentine’s Day marked the Annual Meeting of the Ohio Holstein Association. The business meeting was held Saturday morning with the awards luncheon following. The afternoon luncheon featured presentations to award winners, top selling animals in 2008 and All-Ohio winners. Top honors included: Senior Buckeye Breed Builder – Ted Renner, Dalton; Junior Buckeye Breed Builder – Joe Cole, Bloomville; Distinguished Service – Jim & Nancy Kemp, West Salem; Woman of the Year – Greta Call, S. Charleston. In addition, Jeff Zeigler of Select Sires gave a very informative presentation on Genomics and how it will effect the future of the breed.
To finish out the afternoon, Ray Jackson of ABS helped auction off items in the Women’s Fun Auction. Proceeds go to benefit the Ohio Holstein Queen Contest and the Scholarship fund. Ray was assisted by his ringmen Nevin L’Amoreaux and Nick McGuire while the items were presented by the newly crowned Ohio Holstein Queen Megan Beuchner and her court.
Tour participants at Oakvale Farm
Newly remodeled facilities at Nelson Dairy
Tour participants at Plain View Farm
Stan-Mar-Dale/Express display their banners
Visitors check out Tag Sale consignments at Triple-T Holsteins
Ray Jackson works to get another bid on the Auction items at the Awards Luncheon.
Holstein World staffer Frank Putman attended the CTPI (Cow That Perform Incredibly) Sale over the weekend. Below are some of the scenes from the nice bright sale arena in Lebanon, PA.
This 2/08 Pronto started the sale. An eye catching daughter out of Ms Durchan SS Daisy (VG-87 2y), then Coldsprings Dur-Chan-109-ET (2E-95 DOM). A consignment of the Daisey Syndicate. She started the sale at $5,300 and was struck off to Clark Zimmerman, Myerstown,PA
BUCKNELL SHOTTLE SHERRY-ET (VG-86, 2y VG-MS) Consigned by Nelson Weaver, Manheim, Pa and purchased by Michael Brubaker (absent from photo), Lebanon, PA for $18,700. From left: Don Welk, ringman; Mike Weimer, ringman; Daniel Brandt, pedigrees & co-manager; Corey Wolff, ringman; Rick Verbeek, ringman; Harry Bachman, auctioneer; Jill Middour, leadsperson; & Bob Landis, co-sale manager & ringman.
LEADER TAKES UK NATIONAL HOLSTEIN CROWN
RESULTS FOR THE 2009 UK NATIONAL HOLSTEIN SHOW
SUPREME CHAMPION (and BEST UDDER)
Wills Brothers, Bassingthorpe Leader Dilys 10
RESERVE SUPREME CHAMPION (and EXHIBITOR BRED)
Seaton Farms, Styche Lyster Sally PI
Wills Brothers, Riverdane Outside Hazel
Monday 16th February 2009
Holstein UK celebrated 100 years of cattle breeding history as part of its centennial year celebrations with the 28th hosting of the National Holstein Show at The National Agricultural Centre, Stoneleigh, Warwickshire.
Judge Brian Carscadden placed the sixth lactation Bassingthorpe Leader Dilys as his Mature, Best Udder and Supreme Champion. Seaton Farms split Wills Brothers from a Champion and Reserve double with Styche Lyster Sally edging out Riverdane Outside Hazel into the Honourable Mention placing. ~Bruce Jobson reporting
A full report on the 2009 UK National Show will appear in an upcoming issue of Holstein World.
June may seem like a long way away, but really, it’s just around the corner. We’re spending the next few weeks getting to know some of the California Juniors who you’ll meet at the National Convention in Sacramento. You’ll get to know their backgrounds, their interests, their opinions….and more! If you have specific questions you’d like our blogger to answer, be sure to email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
My name is Tony Lopes and I live on my families Dairy in Gustine, California. We currently milk 355 grade Holsteins. I am 13 years old and own 10 Holsteins. Of my 7 Registered Holsteins, 6 were bred by me. My herd, TALL-TL Holsteins, consists of three different bloodlines. The first one originated from my first heifer, TALL-TL ITO TULIP, and includes 2 daughters by Dundee and Drake and 2 granddaughters out of the Dundee by Rampage-Red and Talent. The second family is by TALL-TL MITCHELL PETUNIA and includes a Dundee daughter, while Petunia is currently bred back to Aspen. The third bloodline is a purchased heifer, LAZY-A ADVENT SANDY2-RED-ET who has three Debonair pregnancies due in April and three more in September. In the future I plan to show and develop them on a National level.
I got started with Registered Holsteins when I read an article about the Holstein Association’s Jr. Activities in the Hoard’s Dairyman. Though I was only 8, I decided that Dairy Bowl was something I would enjoy. I joined Dairy Bowl and registered the heifers that I had at the time and it kept on going from there. Other than Dairy Bowl and Dairy Jeopardy I am also a member of the local 4-H and our school’s Academic Decathlon team.
A few weeks ago I came back from our State’s Convention in Reno (a 4 hour drive from the Valley). I think I can speak for every Junior there when I say that we had a great time. Other than Dairy Bowl and Jeopardy contests, Juniors were able to participate in a public speaking contest, Award/Scholarship interviews, a Bingo Bash and a Sledding trip. Some of the best memories I have were the sledding trip and just hanging out with my friends.
As you probably know the National Convention is going to be held in California this year and it is going to take much help to put it on. As a Junior we contribute by fundraising and sharing ideas to make the convention a success. Hopefully our contributions can help make this convention the best ever!
Tony is pictured here in the front row, right, at the National Holstein Convention in Tennessee.