HD Notebook

Safety does not take a summer vacation

Fri, 06/05/2015

Farms can be dangerous places

By Patti Hurtgen, Hoard’s Dairyman Online Media Manager

farm saftey

On working farms, there’s constant movement of people and equipment. And with summer, that means more activity and more people.

We have signs posted to remind people of dangers. Roll bars and seatbelts are designed to protect drivers in case of accidents. Covers exist to shield power take-off shafts. But, they must be used in order to be effective. Read more

Reserve fungicides for disease extremes

Thu, 06/04/2015

Applying fungicide to alfalfa may result in a yield bump, but that gain may not be enough to cover application costs.

By Amanda Smith, Hoard’s Dairyman Associate Editor

Over the past few weeks, a number of alfalfa fields have been cut and preserved for later feeding. Behind corn silage, alfalfa is one of the most commonly incorporated forages in dairy cattle diets.

Foliar diseases in alfalfa can damage leaves and stems, resulting in leaf loss (defoliation), along with yield and quality losses, note University of Wisconsin Extension researchers. Read more

Milk margins going down, down, down

Wed, 06/03/2015

They’ve dropped by more than half since October, almost entirely because of milk prices.

by Dennis Halladay, Hoard’s Dairyman Western Editor

Monthly feed cost data used in the Margin Protection Program- Dairy (MPP-Dairy) paints a clear picture of what is behind the more than 50 percent drop in average dairy producer margins that has taken place in the last six months.

It is those officially computed figures that determine whether producers who bought extra margin protection insurance above the program’s $4 per hundredweight baseline will receive payments under the program. Read more

Home sweet home for your feeds

Tue, 06/02/2015

Bunker silos are a great storage option for feed when filled, covered and managed correctly.

By Abby Bauer, Hoard’s Dairyman Associate Editor

bunker silo

Bunker, or horizontal, silos are a great feed storage option for many farms. These structures typically have lower initial costs and lower maintenance needs than some other forms of feed storage. They also allow for high storage capacity and rapid filling. Read more

Siding with the truth

Mon, 06/01/2015

A former animal rights investigator turned whistleblower pulls back the curtain on anti-agriculture activist tactics.

by Brittany Statz, 2015 Hoard’s Dairyman Editorial Intern

walking at nightIt’s no secret that the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) vehemently opposes animal agriculture. Their commercials and Internet videos depict livestock farms as horror houses where abuse and neglect lurk around every corner. However, a new video from the Center for Consumer Freedom has surfaced, exposing an even uglier side to this organization. Read more

California processors propose pennies

Fri, 05/29/2015

Class 4b hearing next week will see farmers and plants light years apart – as usual.

by Dennis Halladay, Hoard’s Dairyman Western Editor

penniesEven if a federal milk marketing order (FMMO) does eventually come to California and next Wednesday’s public hearing in Sacramento winds up being the last time farmers and processors square off on opposite sides of a state-run pricing squabble, there is still no chance of them making up and walking out the door as friends. Read more

Play by the rules

Thu, 05/28/2015

Knowing the rules and regulations for hiring young employees on your dairy can save you — and them — from a world of problems.

by Brittany Statz, Hoard’s Dairyman Editorial Intern

child on a dairyMy dad grew up on a small dairy. Even though he left the farm, he always enjoyed telling stories about growing up on the farm. Dad’s best tale was about how their bull chased him through the woods before he climbed a tree to get out of the way. As one of nine children, danger just seemed to be a part of life for my father. Read more

Top universities for agriculture and forestry

Wed, 05/27/2015

Rankings highlight world’s leading institutions

By Patti Hurtgen, Hoard’s Dairyman Online Media Manager

dairy challenge 2012Where will I get the best agriculture education? Each year QS tackles that very topic by ranking the top universities in the world. There is an overall ranking and reviews on 36 major fields of study. The rankings are based on research impact, academic and employer reputation. Read more

Farmers and restaurants depend on trust

Tue, 05/26/2015

Fast-food leader McDonald’s and farmers around the world face some of the same challenges when it comes to consumer perception.

By Abby Bauer, Hoard’s Dairyman Associate Editor

HolsteinWhile our businesses look quite different on the outside, fast-food giant McDonald’s and production agriculturalists face many of the same challenges. One is the continuous struggle to defend against the “big is bad” perception held by some consumers. Read more

Big mozzarella plant expansion in New Zealand

Fri, 05/22/2015

Output is targeted at markets where U.S. exporters have been successful in recent years.

by Dennis Halladay, Hoard’s Dairyman Western Editor

herd of cows

The already competitive global pizza cheese market got a lot more challenging for U.S. companies last week, when New Zealand export giant Fonterra completed an expansion project that doubles the capacity of its mozzarella plant in Clandeboye on the nation’s large herd-dominated south island (seen above). Read more

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