April 2019 vol. 2
Brought to you by Dairy's Professional Development Organization®

THANK YOU  to all who joined us at our recent Barnstorming meetings. It's your input and passion that makes PDPW's programs what they are. We're proud to be your professional development organization; we certainly can't do what we do without you!

Opportunities to learn...

KEEP TRADE SHOW CONNECTIONS GOING WITH PDPW'S VIRTUAL TRADE SHOW. Did you miss connecting with someone at the PDPW Business Conference Hall of Ideas? Or do you have a follow-up question for a vendor with whom you spoke? Check out the PDPW Virtual Trade Show page for information and contact details about companies who exhibited at the conference. Business Conference exhibitors use this site to upload information about their products, programs and services, and it's a free service available to you. 

EXPLORE GERMANY AND HOLLAND WITH PDPW  The tour will include stops at some of the most recognized landmarks in Berlin, Münster, Rothenburg, and Munich in Germany, as well as Amsterdam and Rotterdam in Holland. Visit Oktoberfest, Anne Frank's House, Neuschwanstein Castle, take a canal cruise, enjoy farm tours, CLAAS factory, and Lely. We will depart from O'Hare International airport on Sept. 14 and return Sept. 27. Learn more here . Reserve your spot today!

ON-FARM TRAINING FOR NON-FARM INDUSTRY PROFESSIONALS teaches those with limited on-farm experience the fundamentals of dairy production. PDPW's Agricultural Professional Partnerships® (APPs) is a 3-day program taught by industry experts and dairy producers during on-farm and classroom sessions at three area dairy farms. Attendees will learn firsthand about animal care practice, environmental stewardship techniques, employee management and the economics of production agriculture. Scheduled for June 25-27, each session will run from 9am to 5pm; participants will depart from (and return to) Crowne Plaza Hotel in Madison, Wis. Click here for additional information, call 800-947-7379 or email [email protected].

PDPW PEER GROUPS ARE MAKING A DIFFERENCE. A handful of PDPW members have been meeting regularly as part of the PDPW Mid-Manager Peer Group. Two groups - one in northern Wisconsin, one in southern Wisconsin - take turns hosting their peers for a farm tour and group discussion tailored to the mid-managers in the group. PDPW will be developing more Peer Groups around other themes, based on member input. If you're interested in learning more, call PDPW team member Melissa Marti at 715 323 3358.
"The Peer Group has been great for me," said Jonathon Hallock of Mondovi, Wis. "Joining a PDPW Peer Group will help you step up your game, that's for sure."

LOOKING FOR THE PERFECT GIFT? Mother's Day, Father's Day and graduations are just around the corner - and we've got the perfect gift for the dairy enthusiasts on your gifting list. "Faithfully Feeding the Future", painted by Monroe, Wis. artist Larry Schultz, beautifully depicts three generations of dairy producers living in harmony with the land and their faith. Painted in honor of dairy farmers, their families, and PDPW's quarter-century legacy of providing solutions to help producers succeed, this painting makes for a lovely addition to any home.
Prices include shipping and handling are listed here:
Canvas - 30 X 22.5          $ 425
Canvas - 24 X 18             $ 325
Print - 30 X 22.5              $ 160
Print - 24 X 18                 $ 135
Print - 16 X 12                 $ 110
To purchase, email [email protected] or call 800-947-7379 Monday through Friday from 8am-5pm.

TAKE CREDIT FOR THE PROGRAMS YOU'VE ATTENDED Find, track and report your Continuing Education (CEs). Get more details at  DairyAdvance.org .
For your dairy...

PRODUCTION AND PROTEIN CONTENT WERE HIGHER from cows that grazed in a pasture treated with a biologic soil conditioner and spray-on probiotic. In a study published in the Journal of Dairy Science, Australian researchers compared two groups of cows: 98 cows grazed in a pasture that was top-dressed with the product, and 114 cows grazed in a control pasture. After controlling for the effect of days in milk, lactation number, and time since a cow entered the study, treatment cows produced an average of 2.67 pounds more milk per day (1.21 liter) with higher protein levels. Researchers noted more work needs to be done to understand the mechanisms associated with the study results. Learn more here .

EARLY-LACTATION BODY CONDITION LOSS LINKED TO SEVERAL negative health and reproductive outcomes. As noted in a recent article in the Journal of Dairy Science, researchers monitored 851 dry cows and heifers 25 days before projected due date. A body condition score was assigned to each animal weekly until calving and once more at 27 to 33 days in milk. Other data was also recorded, including previous calving interval, gestation length, calving-related health events and more. The study showed longer previous calving intervals were related to greater body condition at calving and body condition loss during the first 30 DIM. Multiparous cows that maintained or gained body condition had more pregnancies per AI following first service; this group also had a higher percentage of cows pregnant by 130 DIM compared with cows that lost body condition during the first 30 DIM. Based on data in this study, maintaining a cycle of pregnancy before 130 DIM may reduce the amount of body condition lost after the next calving, enhance subsequent pregnancies per AI and reduce the possibility of early pregnancy loss. For more details, click here .

CAN INCREASED MILKING FREQUENCY OVERCOME EFFECTS of incomplete milking? The Journal of Animal Science published a study by researchers seeking to answer this question. Comparing two groups of 11 cows and starting at 5 days in milk, one group was milked twice a day and the other three times a day, with one half-udder on each cow left 30% unmilked. After 47 days in milk, results indicated increased milking frequency in incompletely milked half-udders was not able to compensate for milk yield lost compared to incompletely milked half-udders milked twice a day. Click here to learn more.
Dairy currents...

ARE YOU WORKING WITH A HIGH-RISK CHEMICAL? Chlorine dioxide is used in the dairy industry because it's a great aid for disinfecting tanks and troughs, and sterilizing containers and utensils with which milk comes into contact. However, because of its toxicity, it's also one of over 300 chemicals of interest in the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program. The CFATS program is administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, setting security standards for facilities with potentially dangerous chemicals such as chlorine dioxide. To learn more - and to register in the program, click here.

NEW FLAVORS, FOCUS ON PROTEIN ARE DRIVING INNOVATIONS in the cultured-dairy sector. While sales of yogurt have dropped since the peak of Greek yogurt popularity in 2015, new products and efforts to focus marketing on nutrient-dense food options are driving opportunities. Skyr is an Icelandic-style cultured dairy product that is taking market share away from Greek yogurt in some places, and several companies are investing in sweet and savory cottage cheese flavors as well as mix-ins to attract younger consumers. Learn more in the full article here

FIELD TRIP AND TOUR SEASON IS HERE! Make sure your farm is prepared for visitors by developing a tour route and practicing your messages in advance. Remember that no one is more credible than a dairy farmer in sharing their own stories. Check out Farm Tour Resources from Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin for planning tours and ideas for hands-on activities for visitors of all ages. Also, be sure to review Farm Tour Safety recommendations to keep everyone safe - your employees, animals and visitors.
For your business mind...

MAY 10 IS THE DEADLINE TO ENROLL IN MPP FOR 2018 COVERAGE. The USDA announced in March that dairy producers who elected to participate in Livestock Gross Margin for Dairy Cattle program (LGM-Dairy) now have the opportunity to participate in the Margin Protection Program for Dairy (MPP-Dairy) for 2018 coverage. Producers must sign up at their FSA office by May 10, 2019. This eligibility is possible thanks to a change in the 2018 Farm Bill; under the 2014 Farm Bill, producers enrolled in LGM-dairy were not eligible for MPP-dairy. Learn more in articles from MILK .

EMPLOYEES CAN'T READ YOUR MIND, so clearly communicating desired outcomes is key to helping everyone in your organization perform at the highest level. Important expectations to spell out clearly include task descriptions and specific due dates or deadlines. Especially during busy seasons, job descriptions and standard operating procedures help clarify objectives - regular updates are also a must. Click here to learn more and access resources from Cornell University.

DEVELOPING LEADERS FROM WITHIN is possible, even in small businesses and farms, according to an article from Michigan State University Extension. By investing in employees' technical skills and soft skills such as communications and leadership, managers can build a team of leaders who are invested in the business or farm's success beyond their own paycheck. They offer tips for small farms to develop leaders, including:
  • Work with other like-minded farms to source trainers
  • Take advantage of resources available locally
  • Purchase multiple copies of one book and ask key managers to read it and schedule times to discuss ways it can be applied to the farm
  • Plan career paths for employees that advance your business while employees advance
  • Provide opportunities for employees to be "mini-managers" over some function or part of the operation
  • Develop a peer group to continually challenge yourself to improve
Read the full article here .
Words to live by...

Success is failure turned inside out. If you're afraid to fail, you'll never succeed.

--- Dorothy Herman, CEO of Douglas Elliman
Book review...

BOOK REVIEW: WORK RULES! INSIGHTS FROM INSIDE GOOGLE THAT WILL TRANSFORM HOW YOU LIVE AND LEAD. Combining the latest research in behavioral economics with real stories from leading companies, the former head of People Operations for Google shares lessons on attracting the best employees and making sure they succeed. Author Lazlo Bock provides insights from his years at Google, including how to strike a balance between creativity and structure. Learn more here .
A BIG Thank You...  

TO THE PDPW SPONSORS who are supporting your professional development organization! As a producer-led group, we extend a heart-felt "Thank You!" to those that stand alongside our nation's dairy farmers.  Their support allows PDPW to execute best-in-class producer training and has enabled us to become the go-to resource for unified outreach initiatives. If you or a company you know is interested in participating as a sponsor, please contact us at [email protected] or call 800-947-7379.
See the full list of generous sponsors here.