Sparkman Dairy, Moultrie - Visit them on Facebook
GDMS Series to Focus on Introducing Beef Genetics to Dairy Herds

Georgia Milk Producers and the Georgia Beef Commission will host a summer Georgia Dairy Managers Series this month that focuses on integrating beef genetics into dairy herds to capture extra dollars in the bull calf market. Speakers will review adjustments producers must make to their genetic strategy, how to understand semen selection and marketing channels, and the importance of calf delivery and care to achieve optimal feedlot performance (UGA Calving Simulator).
Speakers for this series, sponsored by the Georgia Beef Commission, are Dr. Lee Jones with the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine and Greg Devine with ST Genetics. Dr. Lee Jones is an Associate Professor and Food Animal Health Field Investigator. He specializes in Herd Health and Reproductive Efficiency and Advanced Reproductive Techniques (ET and IVF) and Recipient Management. Greg Devine is a Large Herd Specialist with ST GeneticsĀ®. ST GeneticsĀ® is a leader in livestock reproduction. Their services include sex sorted semen, embryo production, and beef bull and heifer development
The meetings are scheduled for:

August 27            10 a.m.                Reid Bros. Irrigation Company, Americus
                 (908 Adderton St, Americus, GA 31719)
August 28            10 a.m.                Burke Co. Extension Office, Waynesboro
                 (715 West 6th Street, Waynesboro, 30830)
       August 29            10 a.m.                UGA Putnam County Extension Office, Eatonton
                 (663 Godfrey Rd Suite 101, Eatonton, GA 31024)

Meetings are open to dairymen (surrounding states welcome), managers, and employees - free of charge and will be held from 10 a.m. until noon. Please preregister for meal by calling our office at 706-310-0020.
Commissioner Black shares updated GATE card details

Farmers who have Georgia Agricultural Tax Exemption (GATE) cards will notice some changes in how the program is implemented, according to Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Gary Black. Speaking at the Georgia Farm Bureau Commodity Conference on Aug. 9, Black outlined the updated program mandated by House Bill 886 passed by the Georgia legislature during its 2018 session. Gov. Nathan Deal signed it into law on May 3.

"The GATE program continues to be questioned," Black said. "We think we've answered those questions."
HB886 set the threshold at $5,000 in total farm sales to qualify for GATE, rather than the previous threshold of $2,500 in sales per commodity. It also raised the registration fees. Previously, GATE applicants paid $20 a year for online registration and $25 annually for mail-in registration. Beginning in 2019, the GATE card fee will be $150 for three-year cards. He emphasized that all cards will be processed electronically, and indicated that mailed applications would be sent back to the applicants with instructions to register online.

Implementation of the three-year GATE card program will take three years. Black said the state's 38,000 GATE card holders will be divided into thirds. One third will receive one-year GATE cards for a $50 fee. One third will initially receive two-year cards for a $100 fee and the final third will receive the three-year card for a $150 fee. GDA staff explained that the staggered implementation of three-year cards will be done alphabetically so the state receives balanced yearly revenue to fund the administrative costs of the GATE program. Renewals beginning in 2020 will be three-year cards for a $150 fee. The cards will be color-coded to indicate the registration/renewal year.

The cards will be associated with the cardholder's social security number, tax ID number or business sales tax number to correlate with tax records. Black noted that this requirement is imposed by Georgia Department of Revenue regulations, though none of these numbers will appear on the GATE card.   Black said each cardholder would receive a wallet-sized card and a smaller card that will fit on a keyring.
To Be "Milk" or Not to Be? That is the Question!

August 27th is Deadline for Comments to FDA on Milk Standards of Identity

On March 29, 2018, FDA introduced the   "FDA Nutrition Innovation Strategy," a comprehensive effort to review labeling of foods and an impact on human health, particularly in relation to preventable and chronic diseases.

"An almond doesn't lactate, I will confess."  And with those words, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, in a  July 17 report by Politico,  amped up the debate about the relabeling of plant beverages which label themselves as 'milk,' which many believe are misleading and deceptive.

Although firm enforcement of FDA standards of identity should have been implemented several decades ago when "Plant Beverages" or "Nut Milks" first began to creep onto 'dairy' shelves, they were not.  No one knows the reasons why, but here we are, now with a debate and labeling examination which will cost taxpayers - and companies - millions of dollars.  Read more

The USDA plans to purchase $50 million worth of fluid milk for distribution to domestic food assistance programs, the  agency announced on Aug. 14. These purchases will be separate from any USDA dairy product purchases under  another program designed to provide financial assistance to dairy farmers negatively impacted by the ongoing tariff war with major U.S. dairy export customers.

The USDA purchases will include consumer-packaged whole, 2 percent, 1 percent and skim milk. Estimated milk volumes could total 12 million to 15 million gallons, depending on the prices agreed to by USDA and the milk suppliers. It marks the first time USDA has purchased fluid milk for domestic food assistance programs, according to the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF).      Read more 
Caution: Extreme Milk Price Volatility Ahead

While dairy markets are no stranger to volatility, the trade tensions could increase the magnitude of volatility milk markets are currently seeing. While there's great potential for markets to move higher, there's an equal amount of potential for them to move lower. 

"If you believe the futures market, it's telling you that it's going to be $16 +," Mike North says. "I think there's going to be a little bit of a rougher road to get to December than what the market is projecting right now, because we haven't wrapped up this trade discussion yet."

While North says discussions with Chinese and the possibility to wrap up a deal with Mexico in the near future could push milk prices higher, the reality that trade tensions don't get resolved could sink them just as quickly. 

"Here's the fallout: if we don't get the deals done. If things go south with Mexico, if China digs their heels in further, if we can see continued cow number growth and production growth, without any pushback from summer heat, the reality is we could take [milk prices] lower," he says.     Read more 
Judge rules against Trump attempt to delay Obama water rule

An U.S. district court judge issued a ruling Thursday that overturns the Trump administration's delay of the implementation of the Clean Water Rule.

The decision put a nationwide injunction on the administration's suspension rule, reinstating the Obama-era rule -- otherwise known as the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) -- in 26 states.

The United States District Court in South Carolina ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had not followed the rule-making procedures by failing to give an adequate public notice and comment period as stipulated under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA).

"As administrations change, so do regulatory priorities. But the requirements of the APA remain the same. The court finds that the government failed to comply with these requirements in implementing the Suspension Rule," the court wrote.

The remaining 24 states were previously granted the ability by a federal judge to get out of the WOTUS regulations.     Read more   
GA Grazing School - Sept. 18-19 in Lyons
From UGA 

UGA Extension will host a two-day Advanced Grazing School on September 18-19, 2018 that will provide attendees with a deeper understanding of two key aspects of their grazing systems. The focus areas will be on choosing the right pasture species, designing a grazing system that works best for your operation, and how to profitably fertilize pastures for optimal performance. The classroom portion of the course will be held at the Vidalia Onion Research and Extension Center in Lyons, GA. Then on the second day, the group will finish up the classroom portion before visiting Newly Halter's farm where participants will take a close look at his rotational grazing systems.
Cost of the two-day program is $150 per person. This registration fee includes a 250-page notebook full of resources on the subject matter, along with lunches and breaks on each day, and dinner on the first night. Registration is limited and participants are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. So, interested persons should register soon. You can register by contacting the Tattnall County Extension Office at (912) 557-6724. 
For more information on the Advanced Grazing School program, click here.
Register Now for 2018 Ag Issues Summit 
From GA Farm Bureau

The Joint Agriculture Chairmen's Ag Issues Summit is scheduled for Thursday, August 23, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. at the Georgia National Fairgrounds & Agricenter in Perry.   

The Summit will be hosted by Georgia's House and Senate Agriculture Committee Chairmen, Senator John Wilkinson and Representative Tom McCall.  The agenda includes several important agricultural issues, including:
  • modifications to the Georgia Ag Tax Exemption (GATE) program
  • the impact of the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision on water use
  • information on the new Georgia Center for Rural Prosperity & Innovation
  • legislation on expanding ag education programs.
This is will be a valuable event for farmers and other members of the agricultural community.  Georgia Farm Bureau is excited to partner with the Georgia Agribusiness Council, Georgia Poultry Federation, Georgia Urban Agriculture Council and the Georgia Forestry Association to provide lunch to attendees at no charge.
The meeting is free to attend, but meeting space is limited so an RSVP is required.  Please respond no later than Friday, August 17.   An agenda will be emailed to all attendees prior to the meeting.
To Register
If you would like to register, contact Leigh Goff at 404-656-5099 or, or Taylor Hartshorn at 404-463-5257 or
Florida Study: Cool, Calm Cows Produce More Meat, Dairy

Cattle are a little like humans: They are more productive when they are cooler. With cattle, a cooler body helps with meat and dairy production, new University of Florida research shows.

Cows with shorter hair are cooler, and thus, more productive, said Raluca Mateescu, an associate professor of animal sciences at the UF Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. A calm cow is also more productive than an agitated one, Mateescu said.

When their bodies heat up, cattle use energy to try to lower their temperature, which usually means they eat less, said Mateescu, who led a recent study on body temperature and cattle traits.

"These findings would have the biggest impact for beef producers in hot, humid environments, largely in the southeast U.S. and other sub-tropical and tropical regions of the world," Mateescu said.

Florida and much of the southern U.S. are in what's called the "sub-tropics." Places like Brazil, central Africa and the northern half of Australia are in the "tropics."     Read more
Ever Have Problems with Silage Fermentation?

Whether Mother Nature suddenly turns against you or the crop isn't harvested quite at the moisture you expected, some years the silage fermentation process just doesn't work out the way it's supposed to or the way you'd like it to. 
During anaerobic silage fermentation, microorganisms feed on sugars and other soluble carbohydrates in the forage material and produce organic acids, such as lactate and acetate. This lowers the pH and creates an environment where the resulting silage is preserved, writes forage expert Joel Bagg.
An efficient fermentation is desirable for two reasons:
  1. To preserve nutrients to optimize livestock intake and performance
  2. To minimize forage dry matter lost in the fermentation process and spoilage at feed-out
Fermentation losses can be 12 percent to 15 percent with a good fermentation, and much higher with a poor one. Spoilage losses can be significant.    Read more

Help Us Donate 80,000 Servings of Milk 
Cargill will donate 3 servings of milk to  The Great American Milk Drive for every person who shares how they care for dairy animals using the HerdFirst Facebook frame and #putyourherdfirst. From now until October 31, 2018 we can give up to 80,000 servings of milk with your help.
You can find the HerdFirst Facebook frame by going to your Facebook profile and clicking Update Profile Picture, Add Frame, and typing HerdFirst into the search box.

Have fun sharing your positive images and stories with consumers, and helping get hungry families and children the nutrition they need to thrive.
Learn more at
GA Dairy Classifieds

For HIRE: Southeast DHIA 
has a position to fill in the 
West Central Georgia area for a 
 Responsibilities include data 
collection on area dairy farms 
during milking time. S
chedule is somewhat flexible 
but the hours are non-typical. S
ome travel and out-of-town 
work likely. 
Applicants should be comfortable 
with computers and software and
have good communication and 
organizational skills as well as 
reliable transportation. Pickup Truck required. I
f interested send a resume to 
For Sale: 
WW Livestock Systems Hydraulic Head shoot, never used, excellent condition, kept  under roof.  Listed for $23,041 asking $15,000 or reasonable offer.  Call M
aggie 352-507- 
2042 or email:
For Sale: Custom manure application and Dryhill manure equipment sales. 
Contact Edwin @ 478-299-0717 with Agboys Custom Services LLC  - 
New 8"x52' lagoon pump with outriggers $24,000 (Pictured right)

For Sale 3000 gallon Surge/Westfalia milk tank and wash system. Three phase condensers. 2002 model. Excellent condition. John B Gay, 478-494-5107

WANTED: DeLaval Westfalia
 Neck Transponders:  TN Dairy seeking used Westfalia neck band transponders. 
Please contact Bill or Peggy Howell if interested at 423-972-9254 or 423-371-3032.

WANTED: Looking for used pasteurizing and bottling equipment in working condition; Linda and Darrell Rankins, Jr.; 334-745-2357 (best times: mid-day and after 8 p.m.)

For Sale: 
Jersey cows, heifers and calves for sale.  Registered with AJCA, all ages! Contact Matt Holton at 770-718-8271, call or text.  Dawsonville, GA.

FOR HIRE:  Custom Silage Harvesting.  Late model JD chopper. Will travel. Let me put your quality forage up! Nic Haynes, Muddy H Farms, 678-617-3379.

We have a continuous selection of fresh and springing heifers.
Call William at  (706) 768-2857 or visit our website at 

Bullcalves Wanted : Looking for Bullcalves to purchase - Barron Tench 864-844-2295 or     
Upcoming Events:

August 31 - 
Forage Production Field Day, Greensboro

September 18-19 GA Advanced Grazing School, Lyons

October 4 - 14 - GA National Fair, Perry

Oct. 16-18 - Sunbelt Ag Expo, Moultrie
GA Milk Producers|706.310.0020

Georgia Milk Producers has been named a 2017 All Star Award winner by Constant Contact , an  Endurance International Group  company and a leader in email marketing solutions. The annual award recognizes the most successful 10 percent of Constant Contact's customer base, based on their significant achievements using email marketing to engage their customer base and drive results for their organization during the prior year.  GA Milk utilizes the Constant Contact marketing service each Friday with their GA Milk Weekly Enews and has received this award for the last three years. Thank you to our many subscribers!!