June 2023 Vol. 1
Brought to you by Dairy's Professional Development Organization®
Opportunities to learn
Water Tours
July 13, 2023
Madison, Wis.
MADISON-AREA WATER TOURS TO SHOWCASE INNOVATIONS and partnerships. Scheduled for Thu., July 13, 2023, buses will pick up attendees at Middleton Park and Ride, address: 4400 Parmenter St. Middleton, WI 53562 at 9:15am and return by 3:15 pm. Participants will tour three sites, including Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District’s Nine Springs Wastewater Treatment Plant, EnTech Solutions’ Middleton and Blue Star Dairy. Travel time will feature discussions with water-quality experts, researchers and other attendees. Pre-registration is required; tickets are $49. For more information, including the program flier and details on each tour stop, visit www.pdpw.org or call PDPW at 800.947.7379.
PDPW Accelerate™
July 26, 2023
Wisconsin Dells, Wis.
SUMMER INTERNS: SET YOURSELVES APART by attending PDPW Accelerate™ workshop facilitated by Michael Hoffman. Join other interns from across the industry on July 26 in Wisconsin Dells, Wis., for a one-day conference designed to build the skill sets needed to be successful in today's workforce. Sessions will focus on communication, feedback, workplace interactions and more. Learn more, download the program flyer and register here
Meet new board member Laura Raatz:
Meet Laura Raatz, a recently elected PDPW board member from Wagner Farms in Oconto Falls, Wis. From Oconto Falls, Wis., Laura and her husband Tyler are part owners of Wagner Farms with her brother, Shawn, and parents Hank and Pam Wagner. She graduated from UW-Marinette with an associate degree and a passion to go back to the farm where she is now herd manager. In this role, she focuses on taking animal health and comfort to the next level. Wagner Farms is home to 950 cows; they crop about 1,500 acres. Laura is involved in four other businesses including a leadership training business which served in part to prompt her to author a book with her dad – their first book together.
“Being involved in PDPW has given me so many different learning experiences on and off the farm,” says Laura. “There are so many different PDPW events and programs I’ve attended that have given me resources and learning techniques to bring back and implement on our dairy."
“I am excited to be a board member and have the opportunity to give back to an organization that has changed my life and to have an opportunity to make a difference in someone's life.” 
For your dairy
PROTOCOLS FOR NON-AMBULATORY ANIMALS ARE KEY for both welfare of animal and safety of humans, according to an article from Penn State Extension. Working with a veterinarian for a prompt diagnosis and options for treatment is critical to ensuring proper care and the best chance to recover. Written plans for managing non-ambulatory animals should address proper methods and special equipment for moving animals, access to feed, water and protection from elements and other animals, and consideration of humane euthanasia. Learn more in the full article.
UNDERSTANDING HOW STRESS IMPACTS COWS’ UDDERS and milk components was the focus of research published in the journal Frontiers in Genetics. Researchers injected cows with a dose of the stress hormone dexamethasone which resulted in a short-term drop in milk production and lactose content in milk though protein and fat content remained the same.
These results and udder biopsies indicate that in times of stress or disease, lactose synthesis pauses so glucose can be sent to fight the disease or stress in the cow’s body. Researchers stated these findings could also open the door for new opportunities to control the regulation of different components in milk. Learn more in the UC-Davis newsletter and journal article.
For your business mind
TAP INTO INDUSTRY RESOURCES FOR FARM EMPLOYEE TRAINING programs to ensure consistent top-quality animal care. Ohio State Extension team compiled a list of resources including the National Milk Producers Federation Farm Animal Care Program, Dairy Care 365, Calf Care & Quality Assurance Training and more that can be used to create or supplement an individual farm’s training programs and management protocols. Find all the resources in the full article.
RETAIN EMPLOYEES BY BEING A MANAGER PEOPLE DON’T WANT TO QUIT. A popular saying is that people don’t quit jobs, they quit managers. An article from Fast Company highlights five traits of managers that create dedicated, enthusiastic teams:
1.      They give context
2.      They are proactive
3.      They are empathetic
4.      They help employees grow
5.      They value employees’ input
Learn more about each of these traits here.
ACTS OF KINDNESS CAN HELP REDUCE ANXIETY, according to research conducted at Ohio State University. In an experiment, people who practiced random acts of kindness experienced reduced levels of depression and anxiety while feeling an improved sense of social support and overall satisfaction with life. Consulting a mental health professional for serious struggles with anxiety remains critical, but looking for ways to help others can also help your own health and outlook. Read more here
The Dairy Signal
HAVE YOU LISTENED TO THE DAIRY SIGNAL LATELY? With a growing archive of episodes on a wide variety of topics, The Dairy Signal® continues to be a go-to source of readily available team meeting material. Free to use and download 24-7, many dairy managers and professionals rely on the Dairy Signal as a source of ongoing training while staying up to date on the latest in market and industry news and research. 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:
Take a deep dive into managing milk replacer to hit calf-growth targets. Understand and calculate which milk replacer formulation is the best fit for each farm.
  • Dr. Liz Cox, MS, DVM, Animal Care Program Manager, California Department of Food and Agriculture
Hear about carbon banking and experiences from the Rabo Carbon Bank, along with insights on the opportunities and impacts for dairy producers.
  • Ryan Findlay, Regional Lead Business Development, Carbon Banking, Rabo Carbon Bank
Tune in for an update on the state of the Wisconsin dairy industry and learn about investments in the state’s agricultural economy and farm families.
  • Randy Romanski, Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection
Join the conversation about the latest news in dairy and agricultural markets and exports, along with the global, national and regional trends lined up to impact your dairy business.
  • Ben Buckner, Chief Grains and Dairy Analyst at AgResource
Hear about the latest research in dairy-manure land management and methods to minimize the environmental impacts of dairy farms, including possible solutions to reduce methane, nitrous-oxide emissions and nitrate leaching.
  • Dr. Xia Zhu-Barker, PhD, assistant professor, Department of Soil Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Without protection, a lifetime of farming can result in hearing loss. Learn key strategies to protect hearing along with research results about the cognitive status of aging farmers.
  • Jan Moore, PhD, professor & academic diversity officer, Department of Communication Disorders, University of Nebraska-Kearney
Tune in for the latest on how the dairy-checkoff program is working to benefit dairy producers, including updates from Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin and the Center of Dairy Research.
  • Chad Vincent, CEO, Dairy Famers of Wisconsin
  • Dr. John Lucey, PhD, director, Center for Dairy Research, and professor of Food Science, UW-Madison 
Dairy currents
COMMUNITIES ARE IMPORTANT FOR EMOTIONAL WELL-BEING. While farming and raising animals is rewarding in many ways, living and working in rural communities can feel isolating. Building communities can provide the support and connections you need to promote a positive impact on your mental health and wellbeing. Getting involved in community activities through schools, churches and organizations provide a number of options, and the Wisconsin Farm Center also provides online support group experiences to share challenges and encouragement. The Zoom video-conferencing format allows participants to be on-screen, or by voice only using just a first name. Learn more in the full article.
STRONG DEMAND CONTINUES FOR CULTURED DAIRY PRODUCTS, driven by a number of factors including consumer interest in the health benefits of probiotics, importance of gut health, clean label ingredients, reduced sugar and convenience. Dollar sales for the category were up 13% over the last year. A Dairy Foods article highlights spoonable and drinkable yogurt, cream cheese and cottage cheese products and trends that are capturing consumer attention and growing sales. Read more here.
SOCIAL MEDIA HAS EVER-INCREASING IMPACT ON FOOD DECISIONS, PERCEPTIONS, especially among younger generations. According to the 2023 Food and Health Survey from the International Food Information Council (IFIC), younger generations were more likely to see food- and diet-related information on social media. A solid majority (60%) of those who reported seeing food-related social media content also encouraged them to make at least somewhat healthier choices. At the same time, 68% of consumers reported seeing a lot of conflicting information on social media about foods to eat or avoid — and 60% said the conflicting information casts doubt on their food choices. Read more about this and other topics including the impact stress and rising food prices have on food choices.
“Resilience is all about being able to overcome the unexpected. The goal of resilience is to thrive.” - Jamais Cascio
Book review
LET THEM LEAD: UNEXPECTED LESSONS IN LEADERSHIP FROM AMERICA’S WORST HIGH SCHOOL HOCKEY TEAM. The coach who helped transform one of the worst high school hockey teams into one of the best shares the lessons and stories from his experiences. He highlights how he made being part of the team special by making it hard and how putting team members in charge of goal setting, discipline and key decisions helped the team meet its goals, and how those lessons can apply to all types of teams and organizations. Learn more.
PDPW educational calendar
July 13
Water Tours
Madison, Wis.

July 26
Wisconsin Dells, Wis.
Thank you sponsors