Southeast Hay Convention proceedings available
The 6th Southeast Hay Convention was held on March 11-12, in Watkinsville, Ga. Below is an outline of the major topics that were covered. Click the link for more information about the topic.
Programs target milk quality in Southeast
By Ray Mobley
Mastitis is the most common disease and biggest cause of antimicrobial use in adult dairy cattle in the United States. Despite considerable knowledge regarding the prevention and therapy of mastitis, many farms continue to look for ways to better adopt mastitis control practices. Additionally, the U.S. dairy industry is increasingly diverse in terms of herd size, housing, labor and management models.
The Quality Milk Alliance, a five-year project funded by USDA-NIFA, is dedicated to reducing mastitis and antibiotic use in dairy cows. Project investigators include veterinarians, dairy scientists, sociologists, economists, media and education specialists, and Extension educators from four institutions.
Florida A&M University is partnering with Michigan State University, Pennsylvania State University, and Mississippi State University to develop a program to address this significant issue. This program will develop a farm evaluation that will not only assess traditional key areas of a herd quality milk program, but also will help dairy producers become better employee coaches and their veterinarians grow into the role of “science teachers” for the employees. The farm evaluation will also be the basis for a combined online and “hands on” educational program to certify specialists who will be familiar with and can apply the evaluation on dairy farms. Additionally, the system will be tested in over 120 dairy herds in three states to determine if the approach can reduce mastitis and antibiotic use on dairy farms, improve employee education and participation in herd quality milk practices, and determine if the system is economically viable for dairy operations.