2021 | February 19 GMP E Newsletter
Georgia Milk Producers Weekly Enews
The Best Chocolate Milk in Georgia
Scouring the state of Georgia for its very best chocolate milk is every bit as delicious an endeavor as it sounds. From Moultrie to Clermont, and all points in between, the Peach State brings the heat when it comes to chocolate milk-- a fact that is well deserving of more mainstream attention. So from the windy corridor that is Atlanta's Jackson Street Bridge, here's GA's Top 5 in classic countdown fashion!
Hillcrest Farms is Georgia’s 1st robotic dairy farm  
Story by Hope S. Philbrick, Foodie Travel

If your mental image of a dairy farmer is someone perched on a three-legged stool to milk cows by hand, visit Hillcrest Farms for an update. The first robotic dairy farm in the state of Georgia is now giving tours at its fourth-generation farm in Dearing, a small community in McDuffie County near Augusta.  
Take part in a 90-minute tour and you’ll come face-to-face with cows, learn how the high-tech approach to milking has been implemented and how the cows have reacted (spoiler alert: they’re happy!), learn something new, spend time with nature, and bring new meaning to the phrase ‘farm-to-table.’   Read more here>>>
Agricultural Issues Surfacing during Georgia Legislative Session
Week six of the 2021 Georgia State Legislative Session was a short, but busy one for lawmakers. According to Georgia Agribusiness Council (GAC) President Will Bentley, a lot of things are starting to surface that GAC has been working on. click here. 
From GA Agribusiness Council

House Bill 498 was dropped in the House this week and stems from an issue faced by a GAC board member in South Georgia. Chairman Sam Watson brings this bill forward after working with GAC and GFB for months to exhaust all other non-legislative options to fix the problem locally. The assessment in this particular case concluded that taxes were owed on agriculture equipment, assets, and livestock that had traditionally been exempted under a qualified farm products provision.
This legislation aims to align the Georgia Code with the intent of the legislature so that qualifying family farm entities will not be subject to ad valorem tax on these products due to their business structure. Much like the issue we faced with CUVA three years ago, it would allow for qualifying entities that qualify separately to consolidate or merge in order to bear the costs of the extremely capital-intensive industry that is agribusiness.
If not properly addressed, this issue could have huge impacts across the state. As ad valorem code changes require a constitutional amendment, the legislation will require a 2/3 Yea vote from both chambers and will be placed on the statewide ballot in 2022. HB 498 is a priority issue for GAC and we appreciate the efforts of Rep. Watson and several other members of the South Georgia delegation.
February 2021 GA Milk Review

In this issue:
  • Smith and Dye Honored at GA Dairy Conference
  • McCall Elected New GFB President
  • Dickey and Walker Appointed As Chair of State AG Committees
  • What's New for Filing A 2020 Farm Tax Return
  • Dixie Dairy Report

2021 GDYF Annual Golf Tournament

Join us for the 2021 GA Dairy Youth Foundation Golf Tournament on March 26th at Lane Creek Golf Club in Bishop.

Your continued support is needed to grow our dairy FFA, 4-H and collegiate youth programs in Georgia!!

Lunch will start at 11 a.m. and tee time is at noon.

Biden, Hill Democrats plan to unveil immigration reform bill this week
By Geoff Bennett, Julia Ainsley and Jacob Soboroff, NBC News

The Biden administration and Hill Democrats are expected later this week to release an immigration reform bill, multiple sources familiar with the planning tell NBC News.
The legislative text of the “U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021” will reflect the immigration priorities that President Joe Biden unveiled on his first day in office. His proposal includes an earned pathway to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants, expands the refugee resettlement program and deploys more technology to the Southern border. There are additional protections that are being considered in the legislation, such as asylum processing in home countries for minors, expanded benefits for DREAMers and ending the public charge rule.

While previous attempts at massive immigration reform have failed under both Republican and Democratic administrations, the Biden White House has signaled support for breaking the legislation into pieces.

As a potential secondary path, lawmakers would work to pass bills legalizing farmworkers and Dreamers right away, and then move toward a more expansive overhaul. The main objective, officials and advocates say, is progress.

“If certain parts of the bill become building blocks, that’s fine,” said Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center. Read more here>>>
Bill Gates: Rich nations should shift entirely to synthetic beef
By James Temple, Technology Review

In his new book, How to Avoid a Climate Disaster, Bill Gates lays out what it will really take to eliminate the greenhouse-gas emissions driving climate change.
The Microsoft cofounder, who is now cochair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and chair of the investment fund Breakthrough Energy Ventures, sticks to his past argument that we’ll need numerous energy breakthroughs to have any hope of cleaning up all parts of the economy and the poorest parts of the world. The bulk of the book surveys the technologies needed to slash emissions in “hard to solve” sectors like steel, cement, and agriculture.
He stresses that innovation will make it cheaper and more politically feasible for every nation to cut or prevent emissions. But Gates also answers some of the criticisms that his climate prescriptions have been overly focused on “energy miracles” at the expense of aggressive government policies.
The closing chapters of the book lay out long lists of ways that nations could accelerate the shift, including high carbon prices, clean electricity standards, clean fuel standards, and far more funding for research and development. Gates calls for governments to quintuple their annual investments in clean tech, which would add up to $35 billion in the US. Read more here>>>
The Bogus Burger Blame
By Frank Mitloehner, Clear Center

One of the most popular meals in America is one of the most maligned.
Climate change is the biggest challenge of our lifetime, which we must address with urgency, but swapping out a hamburger once a month isn’t how we do it. While the burger does have an impact on our climate, which we’re working to reduce, it’s simply not the climate killer it’s made out to be.

Animal agriculture, including ruminant animals like the cows that belch methane as they digest food, has an environmental footprint. That’s a fact. According to the EPA, animal ag is responsible for 4 percent of the United States’ direct greenhouse gas emissions. Of that amount, beef cattle are in for 2.2 percent. If you want to use the more encompassing cradle-to-grave formula, beef cattle still only account for 3.3 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. The dairy sector is responsible for 1.9 percent. (Lifecycle assessments are the preferred method of measuring a sector’s greenhouse gas emissions, but it’s not always the most appropriate, which I’ll explain in a minute.)

The greenhouse gas emissions of our four-legged friends? Clearly, they’re not nothing.

But they’re not everything, either. 

The elephant in the room (or rather, in the atmosphere) is fossil fuel. Its sectors combined account for nearly 80 percent of direct U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. There are no life-cycle assessments for these sectors, which is why direct emissions is most appropriate when making comparisons between sectors; between animal agriculture and transportation, for example. Read more here>>>
Announcing the 2021 GDYF Junior Board!
We are excited to work with these youth!

Summer Pasture Management Talks hosted by Oglethorpe County Extension via zoom meeting

Registration is free and open to the public. Zoom will be held on February 24, 2021 at 6:30 pm. Category 21 and Private Pesticide Credit Available.

Other Stories to Check Out This Week >>>
GA Dairy Classifieds

UPDATED 1/15/2021

Seeking Beef and dairy crossed bullcalves/heifers bottled or weaned. Please contact Victoria Rowland at 404-922-0938 or 423-946-5869

Will Raise Heifers for GA Dairy Farms: Hello we are located in Southern Illinois and have an abundance of pasture and cheap feed available looking to contract with a dairy to grow heifers for them, out location offers mild climate and we are just 558 miles from Montezuma Ga. Please contact 817-528-6645 very reasonable daily rates.

For Sale- DeLaval 84 Vacuum Pump on Stand, Oil Reclaimer, 10 HP- 3 Phase Electric Motor. New Bearings, New Oil Seal, New Belts. $2000
For more Information Call Tony Strickland , 229-254-6871; deepsouthai@gmail.com

For sale - Please contact Archie Felder for more information at 803-682-3426:
  • Dairy Tech Bay Pasturizer - $4,000
  • Tidenberg Hydraulic Hoof Table (like new) - $5,000
  • Claas Silage Choppers - 960 1875 cutterhead hours, 4WD, 600 orbis, HD300 PU - $180,000
  • Koomin John Deere Corn Header adapter for Claus Silage Chopper Used - $6,000
WANTED: Peter's Cattle Co. will buy any dairy, beef, and cross, bottle or weaned, bulls, heifers or free martins. Pick up weekly 7 days a week. Chris- 470-255-8515
Bull Calves WANTED:  Competitive pricing with 6 day a week pickup. Brandon Mason Cattle Company 912-632-4490

FOR SALE :  We have a continuous selection of fresh and springing heifers.   Call William at   (706) 768-2857  or visit our website at   crumpdairyreplacements.org  
Farmer to Farmer Support Program Available for SE dairy farmers
Farmers across the Southeast are experiencing uncertain times like never before. All aspects of agriculture have been hit by market losses due to COVID-19, but dairy has reached a level of uncertainty that many have never experienced.

As we navigate through these next few months, dairy producers across the Southeast have come together to introduce the "Farmer to Farmer Support Program." If you find that you need support or would like to talk to a fellow farmer or industry friend, they have several volunteers that are willing and able to help. Georgia Milk Producers has also put together a packet on the program that you can access by clicking here. 

For more information on the program, please reach out to Farrah Newberry at gamilkproducers@gmail.com