February 2024 Vol. 2

Brought to you by Dairy's Professional Development Organization®

Opportunities to learn

2024 PDP Business Conference

March 13-14, 2024

Wisconsin Dells, Wis. 

JUST AROUND THE CORNER! MAKE PLANS TO ATTEND THE 2024 PDP BUSINESS CONFERENCE. Dairy’s premier educational event is just a couple of weeks away, and all the details are coming together to make it the most impactful two days for you and your dairy team. Join us on March 13 and 14 at Kalahari Resorts in Wisconsin Dells for learning, networking and more. Check out the fliers in English and Spanish and register today. Walk-ins are welcome, too – but you’ll save money by registering in advance. 

Keynote Speaker

WHERE THERE IS VISION, THERE IS HOPE. The closing session for the 2024 business conference will leave you inspired and motivated to lead in your businesses and communities. Bruce Vincent, a third-generation logger from Libby, Montana, will share his experiences and lessons learned in owning the science of food and agricultural production to effectively communicate with consumers. By exposing the common misconceptions, we can replace consumer fear with science and credible leadership, own the sustainability and environmental discussion, and ensure dairy’s social license to operate well into the future. 


Over the past 25 years, Vincent has given motivational speeches throughout the U.S. and around the world, testified on natural resource issues before Congress and has been named National Forest Activist of the Year. He’s also appeared on several news programs such as “60 Minutes.” Register today for the PDP Business Conference to catch this captivating keynote.

2024 Board Election

In-person voting at PDP Business Conference

IT’S TIME TO VOTE! 2024 PDP BOARD CANDIDATES. As an organization founded by dairy farmers, led by dairy farmers and serving dairy farmers, the election of the Board of Directors is critical to your organization’s success. PDP board members help plan and facilitate the development of programs that bring cutting-edge research, world-class training, peer networking events and hands-on educational opportunities to the dairy industry. PDP bylaws allow one vote per dairy farm membership.


Four candidates are on this year’s ballot, with three of these dairy producer members will be elected to seats on the 2024-25 PDP Board of Directors. More information on each candidate can be found here.


The deadline to mail ballots has passed, but you can still cast a ballot in person at the 2024 PDP Business Conference.


On Wednesday, March 13, two sessions will be held specifically for teens ages 15 to 18 to hone their communications and leadership skills, then put those skills to work by attending other sessions during the Business Conference.


Michael Hoffman, PDP conference emcee, will lead the sessions, showing teens why they’ll want to be a person of influence, lean toward people of influence and develop a leadership mentality. Teens will learn about themselves, how to better communicate with others, and have a great time! 


If you are a parent or teacher planning to attend conference, register your 15 to 18-year-olds today so they can partake in all the conference holds for them.


Students attending Future of Success sessions receive a discounted rate. Click here to register teens (and yourself) today.

Nexus Stage

March 13-14

PDP Business Conference

NEW INNOVATIONS AND TECHNOLOGIES TO DRIVE THE FUTURE OF DAIRY. Five companies have been selected for the Nexus® stage presentations at the 2024 PDP Business Conference. Each company will present its innovation twice during the conference. After each 15-minute session, attendees will have five minutes to ask questions. All presentations will be professionally moderated. Here's the line-up:


Wednesday, March 13

2:30 to 2:50 p.m. Acepsis

2:55 to 3:15 p.m. Agrovive Biologicals

3:20 to 3:40 p.m. Chemlock Nutrition

3:45 to 4:05 p.m. Ever.Ag

4:10 to 4:30 p.m. Quality Technology International


Thursday, March 14

8:45 to 9:05 a.m. Acepsis

9:10 to 9:30 a.m. Agrovive Biologicals

9:35 to 9:55 a.m. Chemlock Nutrition

10:00 to 10:20 a.m. Ever.Ag

10:25 to 10:45 a.m. Quality Technology International

Dairy's Foundation

Dairy’s Foundation Silent Auction

Online now!

ONLINE BIDDING IS UNDERWAY!  The silent auction to benefit Dairy’s Foundation is always one of the highlights of the PDP Business Conference. The fun has already started with online bidding on the Dairy's Foundation website and will continue during the conference. Check out the dozens of auction items, including one-of-a-kind experiences, artwork, travel packages and numerous gift baskets featuring Wisconsin cheeses and more. Unique experience and travel packages include a Bonnie Mohr experience tour, Crave Brothers cheese box and private farm tour, a two-night stay on Washington Island, a five-course meal prepared by a private chef, a Kalahari Resort spa package, and a pig roast - just to name a few! Check out the items and bid here.

For your dairy

CASH IN WITH BEEF ON DAIRY, presented by Dr. Blake Foraker, PhD, assistant professor of meat science at Washington State University, will help you get bigger results by intentionally selecting crosses for beef-on-dairy to better match beef supply chain needs. He’ll share the data that you need to leverage the best attributes unique to beef production in this Day One Afternoon Breakout session.

MAKE THE MOST OF HER FIRST DAY. Attend this Hands-On Hub session, presented twice on both Wednesday and Thursday, to practice critical first-response skills for caring for the youngest members of your herd. Dr. Ryan Breuer, DVM, clinical assistant professor of large animal internal medicine at UW-Madison, will lead the interactive demonstrations of assessing and stimulating newborns, tools for animal care after difficult calvings and practices that will set newborn calves up for success.  

WHAT CAN RUMINATION BEHAVIOR TELL US ABOUT COW HEALTH? In the “Unlocking the ketosis secret” Preview Stage session at 1:00 p.m. on Day Two, Dr. Luciano Caixeta, DVM, PhD, associate professor of dairy production medicine at University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine, and Dr. Cainan Florentino, DVM, research student in animal science at University of Minnesota, will share their work on how rumination behavior can help improve our understanding of the consequences of ketosis in dairy cows and allow for more targeted treatment options.  

Morning Ag Clips

FEATURED BY MORNING AG CLIPS: The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) is accepting nominations for eight seats on the Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin (DFW) Board of Directors. Nominations will be accepted from March 1 through March 30, 2024. Click here to read more.

For your business mind

TAKE A DEEP DIVE INTO NEGOTIATION STYLES AND STRATEGIES in two conference sessions led by Linda Swindling, global negotiation expert and best-selling author. Each is a standalone session, or take both to learn more.

  • Use DEAL to score negotiation wins” is a Day One Morning Specialty Session focused on DEAL styles and how the nuances of each can be instrumental in helping you and your team members negotiate and ask for what you really want.
  • Lead your team with DEAL styles” will unlock new levels of collaboration among team members by learning to spot other people’s negotiation and communication styles to work with them more effectively during this Day One Afternoon Breakout Session. 

LEARN HOW TO FIND THE RIGHT DATA for the answer in the “Farm data analysis flags” Day Two Learning Lounge session presented by Dr. Michael Overton, DVM, MPVM, global precision dairy data lead at Zoetis, Inc. He’ll share how to collect quality data to improve performance across the operation. 

HEAR FROM A PRODUCER PANEL about what they’ve learned in their roles directing multi-site operations. John Mueller, owner of Spring Hope Dairy, Clifton Springs, NY, and John Vosters, partner and livestock manager of MilkSource LLC, Kaukauna, Wis., will share insights on managing people, establishing and overseeing processes, streamlining internal systems and more in the Day Two Morning Specialty Session, “Multi-Site Dairies: Organizing the Systems,” facilitated by Tim Swenson, owner of Swenson Management Service LLC.

The Dairy Signal

CONNECT WITH EXPERTS, LEARN FROM PEERS. Three days a week, The Dairy Signal® connects you with leading experts across dairy and agricultural industries to researchers at universities and government agencies to bring updates on the trends and topics that will affect your dairy business. The 60-minute sessions air every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, with recorded episodes available at www.pdpw.org. Click here to tune in to archived sessions.

Presenters and topics covered recently include:

February 20

The world is in a holding pattern as the U.S. and other countries enter election season amid economic troubles in China, shipping disruptions in the Red Sea, and continuing inflation concerns. Tune in to hear about how all of these impact dairy producers from a trade perspective.

  • Jacob Shapiro, Partner and Director of Geopolitical Analysis, Cognitive Investments


February 21

Join in for an interactive discussion on risk management options related to milk price protection and insurance. 

  • Aaron Gransee, Ag Insurance Team Lead, Nicolet National Bank


February 22

The transition from winter into spring can present special challenges for raising calves. Hear about different ways to take advantage of dairy calf diagnostics during seasonal weather changes and what viruses and bacteria are more prevalent this time of year.

  • Dr. Ryan Breuer, DVM, Clinical Assistant Professor of Large Animal Internal Medicine, UW-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine, and Diagnostic Case & Outreach Coordinator at the Wisconsin Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory


February 27

How common is lactose intolerance and how does it impact the overall perception of milk and dairy products among consumers? Tune in for an informative session to better understand dairy digestion, lactose intolerance and more.

  • Andrea Miller, Outreach Program Manager, Communications & Training, Center for Dairy Research 


February 28

Beef on dairy is becoming an increasingly important sector of the beef marketplace. Learn about the difference in meat quality in beef on dairy crosses as well as carcass waste and what dairy producers can do to ensure higher quality beef production.

  • Dr. Dale Woerner, PhD, Professor and Cargill Endowed Professor in Sustainable Meat Science, Texas Tech University


February 29

Join in for an update on the beef processing industry, including insights on products, pricing, availability and export news.

  • Steve Van Lannen, President and Chief Operating Officer of American Foods Group

Dairy currents

CALCULATING YOUR SUSTAINABILITY IMPACT. Don’t miss this Day One Afternoon Breakout Session to learn how to calculate your farm’s carbon footprint number and understand the data that contributes to it. Carson Dugger, agronomist with Sustainable Environmental Consultants (SEC), will also delve into practices that may have the most influence on reducing the number to help you build a tailored plan for your operation. 

FIVE POINT ENERGY ASSESSMENT FOCUS. Joel Roltgen, energy advisor, Focus on Energy, and Jessica Mlsna, energy advisor, Focus on Energy, will lead this Day One Learning Lounge session to help address one of the biggest expenses on a dairy operation: energy costs. You’ll learn the five best ways to curb costs and increase efficiencies. 

BE BETTER PREPARED TO COMMUNICATE IN CRISIS SITUATIONS by attending two special sessions in the “Simplifying Crisis Communications” Hands-On Hub, led by Renea Heinrich, senior counselor at MorganMyers. You’ll be equipped with a straightforward plan to address communications needs in a variety of situations, including how to clarify potential risks, prepare messaging and identify allies and stakeholders. These sessions will only be held on Wednesday, with the morning focused on on-farm crises and the afternoon targeted at industry issues. 


“The greatest thing in this world is not so much where we stand as in what direction we are moving.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, writer/statesman

Upcoming PDP programs

March 13-14

Business Conference

Wisconsin Dells, Wis.

Thank you, sponsors

Professional Dairy Producers
820 North Main St.
Juneau, WI 53039
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