CDI expands export product portfolio with AMF

Building on its successful powdered milk and butter export business, California Dairies, Inc. (CDI) has diversified its butterfat export offerings with the addition of anhydrous milkfat (AMF).

The production of AMF is natural extension of CDI’s butter portfolio and meets the needs of its international customers for butterfat in a different form. AMF is 99.8% pure butter oil. Packaged for commercial use as a food ingredient, AMF has an extended shelf life and is an excellent form for storage and transportation of butterfat.

“Expanding CDI’s product portfolio to include AMF is a natural fit and increases our presence in the global marketplace,” said Andrei Mikhalevsky, CDI CEO. “Keeping the world healthy by delivering dairy ingredients and products of real benefit will grow market share and create value for CDI member-owners.”



Two appointed to Dairy Council of California

Darrin Monteiro, representing the dairy processing cooperative California Dairies Inc., and producer Pat Van Dam of Two B Dairy, have been appointed to the Dairy Council of California board by Karen Ross, secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

As director of member relations for California Dairies Inc., Hanford resident Monteiro works directly with the more than 400 dairy producer members of the second-largest dairy processing cooperative in the United States. He also represents California Dairies Inc. at industry meetings and events.

Prior to joining California Dairies Inc., Monteiro worked at the USDA’s Farm Service Agency, where he completed the FSA’s managerial program certifying him to run any FSA office in the country. Before that, he worked on his family’s Fresno County-area farm. Monteiro graduated from Fresno State University with a degree in Agriculture Business.

Producer Van Dam has been involved in the dairy business her entire life and currently owns Two B Dairy in Ontario, Calif., which she and her husband Bert have run since 1989. Along with Van Dam’s appointment to the Dairy Council of California board, she serves on the California Milk Advisory Board and the boards of California Beef and FSA. She is also the current president of the San Bernardino County Farm Bureau.

To learn more about Dairy Council of California and the nutrition education initiatives its board of directors are overseeing, visit


California Feed Inspection Advisory Board applicants sought

The California Department of Food and Agriculture announced three vacancies on the Feed Inspection Advisory Board. The board makes regulatory and enforcement recommendations to the department to help ensure that commercial feed inspections contribute to a clean and wholesome supply of milk, meat, and eggs.

Two vacancies are for commercial feed industry representatives, and one vacancy is for a public member. The commercial feed industry representative applicants should hold a current California Commercial Feed License. The term of office for board members is up to three years. Members receive no compensation, but are entitled to payment of necessary traveling expenses in accordance with the rules of the Department of Personnel Administration.

Individuals interested in serving on the Feed Inspection Advisory Board should send a resume by Feb. 28. For further information, contact Maria Tenorio at (916) 900-5022 or email


USDA releases drought aid for California conservation efforts 

USDA will make $20 million available for agricultural water conservation efforts throughout California to combat the effects of drought, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Feb. 4. Interested landowners and managers have until March 3 to apply for available funds.

The funding, through the Natural Resources Conservation Service's Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), is designed to help agricultural operators use water more efficiently, stabilize fallowed cropland, and protect their livelihoods for the future. Funds are available statewide to install a number of conservation practices including irrigation efficiency, cover crops, rehabilitation of existing spring developments, protection of grazing lands, and other supporting components.

Funds will be divided between two specific funding pools: cropland and grazing lands. Cropland with a reduced water allocation of at least 85% will receive the highest priority. In order to be considered eligible for EQIP, the applicant must have a vested interest in agricultural production and meet other program eligibility requirements. For additional information, eligible landowners are encouraged to contact their local NRCS Service Center. Service center locations and more information on the drought initiative can be found at


Texas: ‘Battleground to Breaking Ground’ ag workshop set

The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, in cooperation with the Texas AgrAbility Program and USDA, will present a free agriculture workshop on Feb. 15 in Dallas for current and former members of the military.

The workshop, designed for active duty and veteran military with and without disabilities, will be from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center, 17360 Coit Road in Dallas. The workshop is also open to women interested in agribusiness, as well as beginning farmers and ranchers, coordinators said.

“From Battleground to Breaking Ground: A Transformational Journey” gives military veterans interested in farming or ranching the opportunity to get information on aspects of starting, developing and funding an agriculture-based business, according to coordinators. It was developed with input from AgriLife Extension, AgrAbility, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, the National Farmer Veteran Coalition, Farm Service Agency, Texas Department of Agriculture and others.

The program begins with registration and a continental breakfast from 8-8:30 a.m., followed by a short welcome. Presentations start at 9 a.m., and include a talk by a veteran currently involved in production agriculture. Other presentations will address resource networking, the Texas AgrAbility Program, agriculture business startup, resources available for funding an agricultural enterprise, business plan development, and possibilities for farming and ranching with a disability.

Attendees must RSVP at or download the registration form from the website and send to: Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, Attn: Erin Pilosi or Dr. Cheryl Grenwelge, 2147 TAMU, College Station, TX 77843-2251.

For more information, contact Pilosi at 979-847-6185 or or Grenwelge at 979-845-3727 or