2020 | Feb 21 GMP E Newsletter
Georgia Milk Producers Weekly Enews
RIGHT TO FARM BILL VOTE TABLED IN SENATE
From GA Agribusiness Council

GACs' priority bill,  HB 545  carried by  Chairman John Wilkinson , was tabled on Friday after passing through the Senate Rules committee. Environmental groups have been spreading mis-information for several weeks and have been effective at trying to pit rural and urban citizens against each other. This bill is much needed as recent case law around the country has proven that our current law is inadequate, and no farms in Georgia have the protection we once thought protected us. Chairman Wilkinson and Chairman McCall have fought hard over the past 2 sessions to pass  HB 545  and we will continue to support this bill in the coming weeks. We ask that you contact your state senators and ensure that they are in support of  HB 545 . Our coalition of agriculture groups have put together the  Fact vs. Myth  sheet to make clear what Fake News is being spread.

“I Heart Ga Milk” day at EES
From Fetchyournews.com

Gilmer Schools saw a special Friday as they celebrated the I Heart Ga Milk Day at Ellijay Elementary School with guests from the Georgia Department of Agriculture.

The event was hosted in Gilmer County as part of the state’s Georgia Grown “Feed My School” program from the Georgia Department of Agriculture. Gilmer Schools’ Nutrition Director Linda Waters helped make the program possible along with staff and faculty of Ellijay Elementary and also hosted Misty Friedman, Farm to School/Nutrition Coordination for the Georgia Department of Agriculture.

Friedman commented on the event saying, “My job is to bring more Georgia foods to our Georgia students. And events like this just puts us on the front lines of all the great work that’s being done to support our Georgia Farmers and to really teach our kids where their food comes from.” Read more here>>>
Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) and Dean Foods announced an agreement for the farmer-owned cooperative to acquire a substantial portion of Dean’s assets and business for a base purchase price of $425 million.

Under the agreement, announced Feb. 17, DFA becomes the “stalking horse bidder” to acquire 44 of Dean’s facilities and associated direct store delivery system, as well as certain corporate and other assets and functions. DFA will also assume various Dean liabilities.

According to a simple legal definition, a stalking horse bid is an initial bid on the assets of a bankrupt company. The bankrupt company can choose the stalking horse bidder, which sets the low bar for any other bids.

What’s next? On March 12, the court is scheduled to consider a motion to allow DFA to serve as the stalking horse bidder. Until the court makes final approval of the DFA offer, and for a designated time after the motion is approved, other companies can submit purchase plans or competing offers.

The deadline for interested parties to furnish information to be considered a potential competing bidder for any or all assets identified in the DFA-Dean agreement (see below), or to be considered a potential bidder for assets not part of the agreement (also below), is currently scheduled for March 31. Read more here>>>
Milking Robots and Happy Cows!
From GA Farm Monitor
Why we purchased robots for our cows, staff, and family. Watch this Farm Monitor special on Hillcrest Farms and their new robotic milkers!

Z oetis to Host Producer Meeting in Valdosta on March 3
Zoetis will host a workshop in Valdosta, GA on Tuesday, March 3rd at 2:00 pm. The topics covered will include Southeast Dairy Financial Drivers and Genomic Benchmarking. It will take place at the Hampton Inn & Suites (2 Meeting Place Drive, Valdosta, GA 31601). For more details and to RSVP, please email Jorge.Fulleda@zoetis.com or call 352-240-4868 by February 21st.

ICYMI: January 2020 GA Milk Review
From GA Milk Producers


This edition covers: GA Dairy Farms Recognized for Production and Quality Awards; GMP Bylaw Change and Redistricting Approved at GDC; Walker and Clark Honored at GDC; Hancock Named Director of USDRFC; GA Releases State Bloc Grant Application Guide; and the Dixie Dairy Report.
Sustainability Goes Mainstream
By Greg Henderson , AgWeb
Under intense pressure to meet demand for products that measure up to consumers’ personal values, U.S. food companies are feverishly working to rejuvenate their brands with green initiatives.

Last year’s IFIC Foundation’s Food and Health Survey found over half of consumers (54%) say it’s at least somewhat important that the products they buy be produced in an environmentally sustainable way.
Damp Towels Could be Affecting Your Somatic Cell Count
By Taylor Leach , Dairy Herd Management
Have you ever forgotten to switch the laundry over from the washing machine to the dryer? If so, you may have been greeted by a funky smell once you remembered. 

But if the towels were washed in soap, what could be causing that stinky aroma? Bacteria.

According to  Time Magazine,  towels are great bacteria traps because every time they are used, bacteria and other germs are transferred onto their surface.

“Inappropriate cloth towel management can lead to increased somatic cell counts, clinical mastitis cases, total bacteria counts, treatment costs, and reduced milk production,” says Daniela Bruno, a dairy advisor for the University of California Cooperative Extension, in a recent  California Dairy Newsletter.  “Bottom line: use of damp cloth towels can transmit mastitis-causing pathogens which in turn affects milk quality and jeopardizes milk premiums.”

Towels offer the perfect environment for bacteria and other microorganisms to grow because they’re often damp, warm, absorbent and stored in dark places.
Robots: What was I thinking?
By Mark Rodgers, Georgia dairy farmer, Hoard's Dairyman
We have been milking with robots for three months now. The months of construction as well as the retraining of cows were both stressful and labor intensive. We had to keep reminding ourselves that we had been told to prepare for a “hard row to hoe,” as we call it down here in the South.

I would describe training cows to go in a robot box as similar to training horses to load on a straight load horse trailer. You needed the high-quality feed in front to lure them in and a strong back and patience at the rear of the cow to get some of them to enter the robot.

I had several of my new Upper Midwestern robotic dairy farming friends tell me about the “3/3/3 Rule”: It takes three days for the cows to start figuring it out, three weeks for the farmer and staff to start understanding what is going on, and three months before you finally want to talk to the dealer that sold you the robots. Read more here>>>
Other Stories to Check Out This Week >>>
Upcoming Events >>>
GA Dairy Classifieds
TO ADVERTISE: EMAIL AD AND CONTACT INFORMATION TO FARRAH NEWBERRY at gamilkproducers@gmail.com

UPDATED 1/31/20

For Sale: Corn Silage - For more information contact Carlin Giesbrecht at 478-494-4007

FOR Sale: Stretch-O-Matic Bale Wrapper and Mover. For more information contact Carlin Giesbrecht at 478-494-4007

The following are FOR SALE from Archie Felder. For more information call 1-803-682-3426 :
40 ready to breed heifers - 14 to 15 months old

40 yearlings - 12 to 13 months old
(24000 2x, AI Sired)

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

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 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.

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