Moosletter: April 2017

Moosletter: April 2017
Governor Ricketts visits Wakefield Dairy, 2017 Dairy Ambassadors, Bugs on Your Farm Workshop, NSDA update and more in the April Moosletter.
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April 2017                                                Volume: 3 Issue: 4
Governor Ricketts visits Wakefield Dairy LLC
Govenor Ricketts visiting Wakfield DairyAs part of the Ag Week celebration, Governor Pete Ricketts along with Senator Lydia Brasch and the Nebraska Department of Agriculture visited Wakefield Dairy LLC near Wakefield, Nebraska on Tuesday, March 21.  March 21 was also known as Ag Day across the nation. 
Govenor Ricketts visiting at Wakefield DairyGovernor Ricketts spent time visiting the milking parlor, asking questions and learning how many times a day the cows are milked, the preparation for milking the cows, about the Jersey cow breed the farm milks and more. 
After the milking parlor, the Governor saw first-hand the freestall barn the cows are housed in and the food they eat. 
A number of Nebraska's dairy producers were also in attendance at Wakefield Dairy LLC on March 21st including Bill Thiele, president of the Nebraska State Dairy Association and Doug Temme, member of the Ag Committee.  Governor Ricketts, Doug Temme, Marta Pulfer pictureThe 2017 Nebraska Dairy Princess, Marta Pulfer,  was able to join for the visit as was Rod Johnson, executive director of the Nebraska State Dairy Association. 
It was a great experience for the Governor to see a dairy farm in Nebraska first-hand and understand the importance the dairy community brings to Nebraska. 
Bugs on Your Farm Workshop
Nebraska Dairy Extension is hosting on
May 31, 2017 at Thiele Dairy near Clearwater, NE.
The agenda and registration information can be found on the website.
2017 Nebraska Dairy Ambassadors Announced

In 2016, the Midwest Dairy Association began sponsoring dairy ambassadors to promote the dairy industry to next generation leaders, consumers and students in Nebraska.  The Nebraska Dairy Ambassador program is in year two and the ambassadors are off to a great start promoting the dairy industry in Nebraska. This year we are please to have five ambassadors from three colleges in Nebraska.

Maranda Kegley
Maranda Kegley picture 
College: UNL
Junior Agriculture Education major
Hometown: Kearney, NE

Jessi Sayers
Jessi Sayers photo
College: UNL
Freshman Animal Science major
Hometown: Clarkson, NE

Dawn Klabenes
Dawn Klabenes picture
College: UNL
Freshman Animal Science major
Hometown: Chambers, NE

Dalton Anderson
Dalton Anderson photo
College: Southeast Community College-Beatrice
Freshman Agriculture major
Hometown: Virginia, NE

Emily Finkhaus
Emily Finkhaus Picture

College: NCTA in Curtis, NE
Freshman Agriculture Education major
Hometown: Norfolk, NE

Nebraska Brand Committee Announces New Payment Methods
The Nebraska Brand Committee has announced the acceptance of five types of payment methods when the new technology program rolls out in July, 2017.
“With the introduction of the new technology program this July, producers are going to have more options than they have ever had to process payments,” said John Widdowson, Vice Chair of the Nebraska Brand Committee and Chair of NBC’s Technology Working Group.
Currently the Nebraska Brand Committee accepts two forms of payments, cash and check.  With the transition from paper to electronic the Committee in July, will accept cash, check, ACH, credit/debit card on file, and credit/debit card swiped at time of inspection.
“Our priority is to increase the efficiency of inspections for our producers, by offering these additional options we are hoping to increase the value of the service we are providing,” said Widdowson.  
All payment options will be available for producers this coming July 2017 until July 2018.
“We will offer the five different payments method until July 2018, after that date, we will not accept cash as a payment method,” said Bill Bunce, Executive Director of NBC.  “Producers will have over a year to determine what other payment method(s) fits their operation, and what their preference is, but cash will no longer be an option starting July of 2018.”
“Producer security will be of the utmost importance, and Nebraska Interactive currently works with over one hundred partners in state and local government in the state of Nebraska,” said Widdowson referring to the technology company that is developing and hosting the electronic program for NBC.  “They have the utmost security procedures and expertise in place which we will be utilizing with the program.”
The Nebraska Brand Committee was created by the Legislature in 1941 to inspect cattle and investigate missing and/or stolen cattle.  It is a self-supporting cash fund agency.  Its operating fund comes solely from fees collected for brand recording, brand inspections, and registered feedyards.

Export Increases Continued as 2016 Ended (U.S. Dairy Export Council)

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service released export statistics for December showing total U.S. dairy exports strengthened 47 million pounds (14 percent) year over year to 389 million pounds. For the fourth consecutive month, butter exports experienced a triple-digit increase. While the value of U.S. dairy exports declined 10 percent in 2016, value and volume picked up speed in the second half of the year, volume was up 15 percent in the second half of the year, and 19 percent in the fourth quarter. The aggregate volume of exports was up 3 percent over 2015. Continue...
NSDA UpdateNSDA logo
  • LB 600 - the Brand Bill -  has been introduced.  See the comments below that NSDA submitted.
Comments related to LB 600
Submitted by Rod Johnson, Executive Director of the Nebraska State Dairy Association, representing approximately 80% of the dairy cows in Nebraska.
A cow is a cow is a cow, unless you start comparing the beef cow to the dairy cow.  The current brand laws were developed for the beef industry, where animals run in open range, are moved to several locations and change hands frequently.
At a dairy, the dairy operator has constant control of their animals, young and mature.  Dairy calves are moved immediately into individual care where they are hand fed twice a day.  The males eventually move on into the beef industry, and the females are cared for throughout their life, as the foundation for the milking herd 24 months later.   Many of these baby heifer calves are moved from the dairy into a specialized care facility, sometimes across state lines, and to be in compliance with the beef brand laws, each unbranded baby calf must be physically inspected before leaving the farm, which happens almost daily for a large dairy.
The milking cows are handled continuously, being milked 2 or usually 3 times a day.  Most dairies only turn about one third of their milking herd inventory each year, and mature animals only leave the confines of the dairy when they move on into the beef industry.
In an effort to adapt the brand laws to the dairy industry, the designation of a Registered Dairy was created, which did not serve the needs of the dairy farmer, and no dairies participated.  In LB 600, the Registered Dairy designation is being eliminated, which we can support, because it is doing nothing to help the challenges that dairies face in complying with these beef regulations.
As we look to grow the dairy industry, and thus add rural economic development, most of the dairies in the brand area have said that “if they had known about the brand laws when they moved here, they would have looked at a different area.”  A dairy cow generates over $5000 in farm sales each year.  For a 1000 cow dairy, that is over $5 Million which is generally spent within a 50-mile radius of the farm.  A dairy also creates 1 job for each 100 cows. 
It is our recommendation that some major changes need to be made to these beef brand regulations, to make Nebraska a Dairy friendly region, and we are willing to work with the Brand Commission if they are willing to adapt to the specific needs of the dairy industry.

In this Issue
-Governor Ricketts Visits Wakefield Dairy
-Bugs on Your Farm Workshop
-2017 Nebraska Dairy Ambassadors
Calendar of Events
May 31
Bugs on Your Farm workshop
Where: Thiele Dairy, Clearwater, NE
Featuring: Dr. Limin Kung from University of Delaware speaking about ensiling and silage bugs
Click here for agenda and to register.

June 3 & 4
Moo at the Zoo, Omaha, NE
Nebraska State Dairy Association logo
Rod Johnson, Executive Director
Phone: (402) 853-2028
Nebraska Extension logo
Kim Clark, Dairy Ext Educator
Phone: (402) 472-6065
Cell: (402) 350-5003

Nebraska State Dairy Association Mission: The purpose of the Nebraska State Dairy Association is for the promotion of dairy interests in the state of Nebraska.


Nebraska Dairy Extension Mission: As Nebraska Extension faculty with expertise in dairy production and agriculture systems, we provide science-based programs, resources, and knowledge to Nebraska’s dairy producers. Our aim is to empower dairy operations to be both sustainable and resilient while maintaining profitability. Our ideas, actions, and communications will promote resource-based stewardship while enhancing human and animal well-being.
Copyright © 2016 Nebraska State Dairy Association, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
6409 Tanglewood Ln.  Lincoln, NE 68516

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