Georgia youth attending the 2017 SE Dairy Youth Retreat this week
Georgia Youth Attend 2017 SE Dairy Youth Retreat

Close to 30 Georgia youth and adults attended the 2017 Southeast Dairy Youth Retreat this week in Bradenton, Florida. This annual event is a tremendous opportunity for youth ages 8 to 18. During the retreat, youth participants from seven southeastern states interacted with dairy industry professionals during hands-on learning activities. They also visited a wide variety of farms in Florida, ranging from a minimal input, grazing dairy milking 5,000 cows to a large agri-tourism herd that produces their own milk and cheese. On the final day, the group cooled off at Adventure Island Waterpark and enjoyed a nice evening banquet.

Thank you to those in Florida for hosting the 2017 Southeast Dairy Youth Retreat this year. Our  Georgia kids 
had a great experience and made many new friends and  memories. Special thank you to our dairy farm families and industry sponsors that support the GA Dairy Youth  Foundation. Your contributions allow GDYF to help fund registration and transportation fees for GA youth attending this event.  

To view pictures of the event,
Take This Job and Love it: A day with a Putnam County Dairy Farmer

In WGXA's Take This Job and Love It series, Brittany Collins put on her boots and got dirty for the day at Wooten Family Farm in Putnam County.

She, along with Farmer Jeff Wooten and his crew, milked and fed around 250 cows.

The milk from the farm goes to a milk plant. After the milk is processed at the plant, it's shipped out to stores for you to drink.   Click Here to View Video
Researchers say happiness turns dairy cows into cash cows

Dairy farmers, take note: The key to turning your dairy cow into a cash cow is udder happiness.
Give her a bigger stall, increase air circulation and provide some shelter to prevent overheating.

That's according to a University of Wisconsin initiative that focuses on making dairy cows happier so they provide more milk.

"I think it's really important that we give them the spa treatment," said Nigel Cook, who has directed the Dairyland Initiative at the University of Wisconsin-Madison's School of Veterinary Medicine since 2010.

Cook and his team visit farms to give advice about myriad issues, including behavior and easing cow stress. They also provide workshops and have created a website to share advice with farmers worldwide.
Read more
Heat Wave Could Impact Butter Production
Milk production takes a significant hit during times of high heat due to animal stress.  However, it's not just yields that will be affected.  Extreme heat can reduce component levels and affect downstream processing by changing the yield in dairy products such as butter and cheese.

California is home to 14 of the 86 butter production facilities in the U.S.  These butter facilities produce over 30 percent of the nation's butter production on an annual basis, averaging about 603 million pounds per year. Butter contains at least 80 percent milkfat and the remainder is water, protein and salt.  Because of this heavy milkfat component, yield per pound of milk is highly dependent on the milkfat content.  The rule of thumb is 1 pound of butter takes about 21 pounds of whole milk.  U.S. milkfat has been climbing steadily higher as components have become a larger and larger piece of the dairy complex.     Read more   
On-farm technology is a great tool, but it can replace the human mind.

Technology has helped improve milk production, reproduction, and made managing cows at our farm easier. Parlor identification, milk meters, and automated activity monitoring are all tied together to give us up-to-date and accurate information on how our cows are performing.

All of this technology is awesome, but at times I have noticed employees becoming less observant because of it. I will see a cow in standing heat with an employee nearby not getting her ID number. I asked "Did you see that cow in heat?" Their reply is, "No" or "I think that is the same cow I saw earlier today.

The 2017 and 2018 milk production forecasts are lowered from last month. Growth in milk per cow has been slower than expected, and the forecast growth rate is reduced.

Fat basis import forecasts for 2017 and 2018 are unchanged from the previous month. Fat-basis export forecasts for 2017 and 2018 are raised on continued robust exports of cheese.    Read more 
As Amazon buys Whole Foods, the USDA investigates whether foods sold as "organic" in the U.S. really are. Amazon's acquisition of Whole Foods, the grocer that brought pricey organic food to the masses, comes during a time of turmoil in the organic industry: The Department of Agriculture is continuing to investigate the importation of millions of pounds of phony organic grains. The move is in response to a lengthy Washington Post exposé published in May that tracked shipments of corn and soybeans from Turkey, Romania, and Ukraine that were labeled "organic" but were not.    Read more 
Investment firm buys dairy icon Borden

ACON Investments, L.L.C. and its affiliates ("ACON") announced today that it has completed an equity recapitalization of Borden Dairy Company ("Borden" or the "Company"), one of the leading fresh fluid dairy processors in  the United States. In 2013,  Borden was spun-off from a multinational conglomerate into a private company called Laguna Dairy, S.A. de C.V., ("Laguna Dairy"). Following the equity recapitalization, Laguna Dairy remains a substantial equity holder in  Borden. Headquartered in  Dallas, TexasBorden operates 13 facilities across  the United States with more than 500 million gallons of annual milk processing capacity.

" Borden is an iconic brand with more than 150 years of heritage. We are excited to be partnering with Laguna Dairy and  Borden's management to accelerate the Company's growth and maintain its position as a market leader," said  Aron Schwartz, Managing Partner of ACON. "We think this is a powerful example of how ACON's presence in  the United Statesand  Latin America can be leveraged to create deal flow and bespoke solutions for families and strategic owners across the Americas," added Mr. Schwartz.   
USDA to publish draft of GMO labeling rule this fall

USDA will publish a draft of its proposed federal GMO labeling rule in the fall of this year (which will be subject to public comment) and says it is "working hard to meet the schedule in order to issue a final rule on the law in July 2018."

2017 AgAware Workshop Next Month

AgSouth Farm Credit and AgGeorgia Farm Credit are hosting a free financial training workshop  on August 25 at the Burke County Extension office in Waynesboro. The purpose of the program is to promote and educate the next generation of farmers. This will be the fifth year the program has been  available in Georgia and South Carolina.

Topics covered in the program include: Balance Sheets, Income Statements, Family Finance &  Family Budgeting, Risk Management, Accrual Income, Applying for Financing and Preparing a  Business Plan with bonus video topics on Record Keeping, Marketing, and Technology available  for continued education. The AGAware educational program is also certified for FSA Direct  Borrower Training Credit.

The workshop will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Lunch is provided at no cost. To register click here.
Alfalfa Field Day
August 30th at 10 am

WHERE: WDairy, Madison
(4651 Monticello Hwy, Madison, GA 30650)

  • How HarvXtra® Alfalfa may add value to your operation
  • Grower experiences with HarvXtra® Alfalfa, including insight from Everett Williams
  • Introduction of AmeriStand 480 HVXRR
  • General alfalfa management
GA Dairy Classifieds

For Hire:  Dairy in Gay, GA, is seeking an experienced milker/farm hand. Dairy milks two times a day. Housing is provided.  For information contact Jeff Busciglio at 813-220-7072 or email at

Coastal Hay for sale.  $50 for 4 x 5 round bales or $6 a square bale.  Contact Ryan Keith in Waynesboro at 803-627-0762.

WANTED:  Looking to purchase 300 to 500 lb Holstein heifers. Please call Ray Ward  at 

FOR SALE: Kuhn 1014 Manure Spreader for $9,000 - Contact Randall Ruff, Elbert County, at 706-498-4344

20 Calftel Calf Hutches for $200 each - Contact Randall Ruff, Elbert County, at 706-498-4344

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     
GA Milk Producers|706.310.0020

For 2016, Georgia Milk Producers, Inc. has once AGAIN been named an All Star Award winner by 
Constant Contact, Inc.
, the trusted marketing adviser to hundreds of thousands of small organizations worldwide. The annual award recognizes the most successful 10% of Constant Contact's customer base, based on their significant achievements leveraging online marketing tools to engage their customer base and drive results for their organization.