Nutritionists and consultants who are not currently certified and would like to be can attend training on Oct. 27 from 1 to 5 p.m., at the Penn State Cooperative Extension Office in Lancaster County. 

The National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has defined feed management as one of the six core elements of a Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plan that will be required of permitted Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO). The Mid-Atlantic Water Program, consisting of Penn State, Virginia Tech and the University of Maryland, along with NRCS, is preparing the feed industry for its critical role in this process. Currently, of the 86 certified feed management planners in the United States, 68 have attended trainings in Pennsylvania and 59 represent the Mid-Atlantic region.

The Feed Management Planner Certification Workshop provides a consultant the opportunity to become a certified feed management planner/technical service provider (TSP). At the end of the workshop, consultants can take the feed management exam offered through the American Registry of Professional Animal Scientists. The exam can also be taken at the Penn State Dairy Cattle Nutrition Conference, which will be held Nov. 10-11 at Grantville, Pa. The exam fee is $100.

There are many changes occurring in regulations and policies that will be affecting dairy producers in the Mid-Atlantic region. There is more government scrutiny in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed that includes the impaired watersheds within this basin. The Clean Water Act requires the EPA to develop Total Maximum Dairy Loads (TMDLs) that require reductions in nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment.

Each state in the Mid-Atlantic region is developing a Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP) to meet the required goals for reductions. Feed management or precision feeding is a practice listed for CAFOs to address these reductions. As these WIPs get defined and refined, feed management plans will start becoming an integral component of nutrient management plans. Draft plans are on the web for TMR-fed herds. The Penn State Dairy Alliance Nutrient Management Team is currently working on draft plans for component-fed herds, which will be presented at the Penn State Dairy Cattle Nutrition Conference in November.

Advance registration for the Feed Management Planner Certification Workshop is required. The workshop fee is $35 per person. Register online with a credit card at the program website. For more information about the workshop, contact Virginia Ishler, Penn State Dairy Alliance nutrient management specialist, at (814) 863-3912 or

Dairy Alliance is a Penn State Cooperative Extension initiative.

Source: Penn State Dairy Alliance