Dress-A-Cow Contest, GA National Fair, Perry
Congratulations to Double S Dairy!

Congratulations to Double S Dairy! You are the winner of our Fall District Meeting Grand Prize Drawing! Many thanks to those who attended our GA Milk meetings last month.
By Dave Natzke, Progressive Dairyman

Florida and Georgia dairy leaders continue to assess the damage from Hurricane Michael, but it appears Georgia suffered the most severe damage.

Southeast Milk Inc. (SMI), a dairy cooperative with about 150 members in six states, handles most of the milk marketed into Florida. A majority of its members are in Florida and Georgia and reaching them has been difficult, according to Jim Sleper, co-op CEO headquartered at Belleview, Florida.

Hurricane Michael's path hit Florida's Panhandle, where few dairy farmers remain, Sleper said. SMI's Georgia members, however, were struck much harder.

"Generally, [Florida] faired relatively well when you compare Michael with last year's [Hurricane] Irma, [which] covered the entire Florida peninsula and impacted several dairy farmers," Sleper said.
SMI implemented its Hurricane Preparedness Plan prior to the storm, sending out satellite phones and chain saws and topping off fuel tanks for milk trucks, Sleper said. Several key SMI employees used a special app to keep co-op leaders up to date on storm happenings, especially in the event that cellular phone towers are taken out. Read more
Georgia National Fair Hosts 
2nd Annual Dress-A-Cow Contest 

The GA Dairy Youth Foundation and the GA National Fair hosted the 2nd Annual Dress-A-Cow Contest last Saturday at the GA National Fair in Perry.  Costumes ranged from Dolly Pardon to The Incrediles to Dorothy and the Cowardly Lion. Spectators filled the arena and were blown away by the creative costumes that the kids displayed during the event.  

Hurricane Michael's impact on ag 'catastrophic'
BY Jill Nolin, CNHI State Reporter

The damage to storm-ravaged fields in southwest Georgia in the wake of Hurricane Michael is nothing short of "catastrophic," says Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black.

The powerful storm entered Georgia as a Category 3 hurricane and ripped through the southwest corner of the state with punishing winds that thrashed homes, businesses and farms along the way.

State officials are still assessing the damage, but Black said Thursday afternoon that he expects the monetary losses for agriculture to rise into the hundreds of millions of dollars. Southwest Georgia, which bore the brunt of Michael's wrath, is the heart of the state's agriculture industry.   Read more
'Worst thing I've ever seen': Farmers report crop damage in Georgia
BY Wayne Crenshaw, The Macon Telegraph

As daylight arrived Thursday morning, the full extent of damage Hurricane Michael did to Georgia's farms began to come into view. Early reports are still arriving to the state agriculture commissioner's office, which will soon put a dollar value on the losses.

As feared earlier in the week, the state's large cash crops of cotton, peanuts and pecans, collectively $2 billion to the Georgia economy, were particularly vulnerable, because they were in the midst of harvest. In southwest Georgia at the Florida line, the storm arrived still classified as a Category 3 storm, with winds of at least 111 mph - strong enough to not just swamp crops still in the field, but to damage structures.

Cotton and squash crops were reported damaged in Moultrie, as well as damage to more than 50 poultry houses, where chickens are raised, in counties across South Georgia. One dairy was having generator problems.    Read more
Attend This Year's EXPO for AG Technology, Innovation, and Education

The Sunbelt Agricultural Exposition will celebrate its 41st Anniversary show October 16-18, 2018.  Over 1,200 exhibitors will display and demonstrate products and welcome thousands of visitors to the 100 acre show site.

Crowned as North America's Premier Farm Show ® and the largest Farm Show in America with field demonstrations, the Sunbelt Ag Expo brings together all segments of agribusiness including farmers, educators, policy-makers, ag-enthusiasts and families. All attending the show will see the latest innovation and technology that the agriculture industry has to offer.  Read more
Southeast Dairy Stewardship Program: Quitman (10/22)

University of Florida IFAS Extension and the University of Georgia Extension are proud to invite you for an educational program addressing Milk Quality on Dairy Farms. Experts and dairy farmers will provide insights on employee engagement, performance monitoring, mastitis control, and proper use of antimicrobials. Participants will receive a certificate upon completion of the program. Program is designed for owners, managers, and parlor personnel. Completion of this program will count towards annual animal care employee training required within the NMPF's National Dairy FARM Program.

U.S. Agriculture's Perdue says farmer aid could be less than first estimated
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's $12 billion package to offset farmers losses from the imposition of tariffs American exports could end up shrinking after an agreement to update NAFTA was struck, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said on Tuesday.

"We will be recalculating along as we go," Perdue said in a phone interview with Reuters, regarding the second tranche of the planned compensation, estimated at about $6 billion, which was first announced in July after U.S. and China imposed trade tariffs on each others imports.

China has traditionally been the biggest buyer of U.S. agriculture ex ports but it has been largely out of the market for several products, such as soybeans, since implementing levies on U.S. imports in retaliation for the Trump administration's tariffs on Chinese goods.

The aid package includes cash payments for farmers of soybeans, sorghum, corn, wheat, cotton, dairy and hogs. The USDA had already outlined the allocations for the first $6 billion at the end of August.
Perdue said the picture has changed after the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) was reached, a revamp of the NAFTA trade agreement between the three nations.  Read more
October 2018 Dixie Dairy Report
From Calvin Covington

This issue contains information on commodity prices, milk production, domestic demand, fluid milk sales and Southeastern orders blend prices.  
Trump boosts dairy industry
But long-term challenges remain as consumers drink less milk while U.S. dairy farmers produce more
By Deena Shanker and Lydia Mulvany, FarmFutures

The Trump administration delivered two much-needed boosts to the down-and-out U.S. dairy industry last week, which has been clobbered by years of consolidation and oversupply.
On Sept. 27, the Food and Drug Administration announced it would open up a public comment period on what gets to be sold as milk, following gripes from farmers about the labeling of plant-based dairy alternatives like almond milk. 

Three days later, the administration announced that Canada will give American producers more access to its dairy market, as part of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement.

But for all the headlines the administration's actions generated, they aren't expected to dramatically change the trajectory of the industry, which is facing far larger challenges than competition from oat milk and Canadian dairy farms. Oversupply has driven down prices, and recent tariffs and closed markets have only hurt dairy farmers more. 

"We need to look at addressing problems within our borders, not outside," said Bobbi Wilson, government relations associate at Wisconsin Farmers Union. While her organization does support FDA label enforcement, she said, "that in itself is not going to solve overproduction" from "mega-dairies" driving the current crisis.
Read more
By Abby Bauer, Associate Editor, Hoards Dairyman
A dairy farmer can take great care to make sure the milk produced on his or her farm is of the highest quality as it travels from the cow to the bulk tank. However, once milk leaves the dairy, quality control is essentially out of the farmer's hands.

Some farms have chosen to process their own milk as a way to manage the manufacturing step an d market their own product. This is not an option for everyone, though.

Fortunately, both stringent regulations and creative marketing by some major players in the processing and food retail chains are working with farmers to ensure product quality from farm to table and beyond.

One of those is The Kroger Co., the nation's second largest grocer. Dairy Supply Chain Director Mike Brown shared information about Kroger's "10 days of freshness guarantee" during a panel discussion focused on food retail sourcing policies held during World Dairy Expo in Madison, Wis.

Brown explained that dairy is by far the largest general category for Kroger Co. "Dairy is very, very important to us," he said. "We really focus on quality, and I think that is one of the reasons we continue to have good growth."

He commented that fluid milk is a difficult category for all food retailers, pointing to the drop in milk consumption by U.S. citizens over the past few decades.   Read more
Class III Milk Prices Break $16/cwt.
By John Geuss, MilkPrice Blog

September Class and Component prices were announced on October 3.  As shown in Chart I below, most price changes were positive.  Why did prices improve?  It may be the news that a revised NAFTA agreement, now known as USMCA, has been finalized and is ready for ratification by congress.  Some of the fundamentals, which are reviewed below, are showing significant improvement.

While Chart I shows a positive view for August, there are still lingering issues that have been discussed in prior posts to this blog.
  • There is still too much milk in the system.
  • Class I milk is showing serious and significant declines in consumption.  Because this is the highest paid milk, the Class I decline both reduces the amount of milk needed and lowers the average (Uniform) milk price.
  • The increasing consumption of butter leaves a lot of nonfat dry milk to market.  By the formula linkages and the laws of supply and demand, Class IV milk will continue to plagued by low prices. 
  • Exports gains are mostly in low value products that do not significantly impact producer prices.  For instance, in the most recent month for export data, exports were up 12%.  However cheese exports were down 7%.
Read more  
Does almondmilk contain cow's milk? Not sure, say 16% of Americans, Yes, say 9%, No, say 75%
By Elaine Watson, Food Navigator

Roughly three-quarters of Americans understand that plant-based 'milk' products (almondmilk, soymilk etc) do not contain cow's milk, although a significant minority - 16-20% depending on the variety - say they don't know, while 7-9% believe they do contain cow's milk, according to a new survey.  Read more
Dairyman Jack W. Bentley, Jr. Named to AgFirst Farm Credit Bank Board of Directors
From AgGeorgia Farm Credit

AgGeorgia Farm Credit is pleased to announce the election of Jack W. Bentley, Jr. to a four-year term on the AgFirst Farm Credit Bank board of directors.  AgFirst Farm Credit Bank provides funding to 19 Farm Credit associations, including AgGeorgia Farm Credit, and operates as a federated cooperative with the associations owning AgFirst and sharing in its profits.  Mr. Bentley is also currently on the board of AgGeorgia Farm Credit, where he was first elected to serve as a board member of a predecessor association at the age of 28, and is the current Credit Risk Committee chairman, Building Committee chairman, and Compensation Committee vice chairman. He is the owner/operator of A & J Dairy, which milks over 400 dairy cows and raises 400 replacement heifers.
Mr. Bentley is affiliated with many other farm organizations including the American Dairy Association, Dairy Alliance, LoneStar Milk Products, USDA FSA, Wilkes County Farm Bureau and Wilkes County Young Farmers. Mr. Bentley and his wife, Angie, are residents of Wilkes County. They have two sons, Will (Kimberly) and Ben (Casie Jo) and five grandchildren.
GA Dairy Classifieds

Heifers for Sale (SC): 
18 Bred Registered Holstein Heifers. Big heifers
4 Due in October
6 Due in November
5 Due in December
3 Due in March
50 years in the Dairy business, 
Top herd in South Carolina. 
RHA 25,000, 
Closed Herd, 
All AI Sired, 
All AI Bred, and 
Contact: Debbie Glenn at 

Bull Calves WANTED: Competitive pricing with 6 day a week pickup. Brandon Mason Cattle Company 912-632-4490

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:  hartagriculture@outlook.com
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  barron.tench@gmail.com     
Upcoming Events:

October 25 -
The Dairy Alliance's Community and Cows Dinner at FarmView Market, Madison

Nov. 13-14 - GA Ag Labor Forum, Tifton  - click here for information
GA Milk Producers|706.310.0020 gamilkproducers@gmail.com