Thursday October 6, 2:00 p.m.
Hosted by: Meadow Vista Dairy LLC, Bainbridge, Penn.
648 Milking/Land Conservation and Forages
Sponsored by: Quality Liquid Feed
Located in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, producing quality forages while implementing best management practices for crop production is always top of mind for the Risser Family. Brothers Don and Gerald Risser, along with Don’s son, Eric, and Gerald’s son, Justin, are all partners in Meadow Vista Dairy LLC. Two of Gerald’s sons, Jason and Jordan are also involved with the day-to-day operations. The farm is comprised of 740 acres on which corn, alfalfa, grass hay and small grain crops are grown. In 2008, the farm became 100 percent no-till cropping. The use of rye as a cover crop helps limit phosphorus and nitrogen runoff, and soil erosion. Rye is double cropped with corn. With detailed feed and animal records, the family is able to know the exact cost per ton of each crop. In turn, this helps to reduce wasted feed. More importantly, it helps to allocate which crops are grown, how much fuel is used to plant and harvest crops, and how much fertilizer to apply. Currently, the farm milks 648 cows with a rolling herd average of 29,357 lbs.
Friday, October 7, 12:00 p.m.
Hosted by: Blue Mound Dairy, Laverne, Minn.
1,000 Milking/Milk Quality
Sponsored by: Pioneer Hi-Bred
At Blue Mound Dairy, efficiency and quality are the goals. Those goals extend to every aspect of the operation – from milking protocols to feed production. Blue Mound Dairy, owned and operated by Rick and Carrie Van Santen and their four sons, is nationally recognized for both milk quality and reproduction management. Honored for six consecutive years with the Milk Quality Award, they are industry leaders in milk quality with a bulk tank SCC average of just 112,000 for their 1,000-cow herd. As a 2009 Dairy Cattle Reproduction Council Silver Award Winner, they also lead the industry in reproductive performance across their herd. Finally, Blue Mound Dairy is able to maintain a rolling herd average of 28,500 lbs. with nearly all home-grown forages. By implementing several new procedures and practices, forage digestibility is at an all-time high for both haylage and corn silage.
Friday, October 7, 2:00 p.m.
Hosted by: Myers Farms, Inc., Union Grove, N.C.
1,200 Milking/Reproduction Success
Sponsored by: North Carolina Dairy Advantage
Myers Farms strives for the very best in cow comfort, milk quality and most importantly reproductive performance. Barry and MaryJane Myers, along with their family, own and operate Myers Farms, Inc. The herd of 1,200 milk cows maintains a rolling herd average of 26,990 lbs. with a somatic cell count of 70,000. More impressively, Myers Farms has a 35 percent pregnancy rate. By working with closely with their veterinarian, reproductive specialists and employees, they have a sound reproductive plan. After observing the voluntary waiting period of 72 days, all cows are placed on a PreSynch+Ovsynch program and then timed A.I. Any cows checked open after 36 days post breeding are put back into the Ovsynch program. Heifers are bred when observed in heat and animals found open or over 14 months of age are then synchronized using a CIDR. In 2009, Myers Farms, Inc. was recognized as one of the top four herds in the nation for their reproductive success and awarded Platinum Honors by the Dairy Cattle Reproductive Council.