The POINT - October Customer Newsletter

Page 1

October 2020

The POINT Photo: CentralStar and Yonkman Dairy team. L to R: Katelyn Loeks, Moss McCauley, Deanna Pleiman, Julie Ainsworth, Jess Jakubik, Lucas Yonkman, Doug Moyer, Sam Yonkman, Molly Pluger, BJ Pluger.

Yonkman Dairy

Filling each stall with a profitable cow


“ hen something has worked so well for so long, why would you change it,” stated Molly Pluger, herdsperson and co-owner of Yonkman Dairy Farm in McBain, Mich. “We know CentralStar is the best and provides us with the most support. It’s been proven year after year because our herd keeps getting better every year.” Molly’s words are a strong statement, but the kind CentralStar strives to deliver on. Working together for nearly 50 years, it boils down to one thing; TRUST. “We trust them (CentralStar) to do what’s right for our farm,” said Molly. “We only have 1,500 spots (stalls) and we want every one filled with a profitable cow. CentralStar helps us do that!” “CentralStar’s team is able to deliver a variety of valuable services to get Yonkman Dairy top results,” said Jess Jakubik, Genetic Consultant and Team Leader. “Our team is instrumental in many aspects of the operation. It’s not just one person working with this farm, it’s the whole team that

makes the difference! Our team approach is what makes us more valuable to farms.”

Yonkman Dairy PTA Combined Fat & Protein (CFP) for 305 ME CFP Cows bred with top-end genetics are significantly outperforming their pen mates.

Understanding how to best use genetics and achieve optimal reproductive results are two ways Yonkman Dairy relies on the CentralStar team. “I work with Julie (Ainsworth, Records Analysis Coordinator) and Jess a lot. We meet regularly to review our herd’s goals and to make sure we are using the right amount of dairy and beef semen to ensure we have enough, but not too many replacements. Through their advice we are currently breeding the best cows to the best genetics, and the bottom end to Angus allowing us to quickly advance the herd without the expense of unnecessary replacements. Jess and Julie are really good. They know what’s


best for our herd and are always bringing ideas to the table.” “We’ve always used Select Sires genetics because they are the best,” said Molly. “It’s the herd’s genetics that have carried us through - good times and bad. When cows are well built, they live longer and are more profitable. That longevity transcends from generation to generation.” Always pushing for Continued on page 2

Yonkman Dairy Continued more, Yonkman Dairy recently enrolled in NxGEN®, a Select Sires program that offers early access to the most elite genetics in the marketplace. “We want to use the very best bulls and this program gives us availability to the best in the industry,” said Molly. About five years ago Yonkman Dairy went through significant expansion, more than doubling the herd size. As the herdsperson, Molly found herself strapped for time and turned to CentralStar for help. “I like breeding cows but as the herd slowly got bigger, I had to give something up,” said Molly. “Of course, we asked CentralStar because we trust them. With Deanna (Pleiman, A.I. Specialist) handling the repro program it gives me time to focus on other things. We appreciate her and she really does a good job.” Managing mating recommendations, replacement needs and reproduction cannot happen unless you have the data to measure and monitor actions and progress, and again Yonkman Dairy relies on CentralStar in this area. “When you don’t have the right information, you can’t make good decisions,” said Molly. “We have the right information with DHI and it helps us all make more profitable decisions. I use the data daily, and it’s essential to Julie, Jess and Deanna to understand where we are in meeting our goals. There’s a lot of value in that information, we wouldn’t be as profitable without it!” Teamwork, trust and communication are keys to the confidence Yonkman Dairy has in their CentralStar team. “Since we routinely discuss strategy, things change, so it’s very important to have open and honest communication. Because everyone cares, we take the time to make the call or send a text. We’ve been working together for so long the trust is high and it feels like working with family instead of another business. It really comes down to support and having a good track record and the CentralStar team delivers on both of those points!”







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MemberStockownerNews By: Paul Trierweiler, President, CentralStar Board of Directors


we are. Advances in reproduction, heifer management and cow health have created the need for us to evaluate beef pregnancies and the resulting calves as revenue streams to complement milk sales.

hanks to you and our employees, CentralStar is celebrating our first fiscal year of business. The past 12 months have been nothing short of a whirlwind taking the best from both NorthStar and East Central to merge processes and redefine our objectives. The Board of Directors understands mergers are not easy and cause disruptions. Even though our team of employees have tried to minimize how changes affect you, it is inevitable, and we appreciate your patience and understanding as our cooperative continues to grow and evolve to meet the changing needs of the industry. Then in the midst of merging, COVID-19 reared its ugly head. We are incredibly grateful to our employees for their dedication, providing uninterrupted service… a feat not many can claim. During this time CentralStar created a program that provided relief to you. We are proud to say that through the 5% Semen Rebate Program CentralStar applied more than $335,000 to customer accounts. Along with this we’ve continued to distribute dividends, year-end prepay rewards, and more. We are proud to be a cooperative and provide relief to our customers and owners. With all the challenges we have had lots of bright spots, including Green County DHI's decision to work with CentralStar to process their samples. We've also added several new and exciting programs. Most of us in the dairy business probably never considered we would also become beef producers, but

Recently CentralStar partnered with two cattle procurement companies, TD Beef and Power Genetics to help us secure improved pricing for beef-on-dairy calves. These are regional programs in which CentralStar consultants ensure the best genetic strategy is used to optimize return on investment for our dairy replacements and beef programs. Along with this we partnered with SimVitro® to give you access to high quality IVF beef embryos from black Angus based dams. These embryos are designed to finish in less days and deliver a cost/per pound advantage. I encourage you to reach out to your CentralStar team to learn more. CentralStar is fortunate to have a group of talented leaders to help our business thrive and grow. Earlier this month Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Jerome Meyer announced his plans to pursue a new career opportunity. We are grateful for the time Jerome dedicated to CentralStar and wish him the best of luck. With this announcement, Mark Adam long-time former NorthStar General Manager, will serve as interim CEO, Phil Dieter will be our Chief Operating Officer (COO) and Todd Byrem will be our Director of Research of Development. Our cooperative is fortunate to have a deep lineup of knowledgeable, driven people to help ensure a smooth transition

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and continue our positive momentum.


• Deliver a cost/pound gained advantage



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Regardless of what’s happening in the world trust that the Board of Directors is making decisions to position CentralStar for the future. We are proud of our cooperative, our employees and our commitment to you, and look forward to a bright future.

Call for Candidates In 2021, Director elections will be conducted in districts 1, 4, 7 and 10. Common stockowners that meet the qualifications and submit a candidate nomination by November 1, 2020 are eligible to run for the available positions. Learn more at Annual Meeting To do our part in protecting the health and safety of all during COVID-19, the CentralStar Board of Directors has planned a virtual annual meeting for Tuesday, February 23, 2021. More information will be available in January.

Outperforming Dairy-Beef Crossbreds, SimVitro® HerdFlex™ Beef Embryos are designed to: • Finish in less days with a more suitable mature size


Feed efficient

See the difference

• Offer advantages to operations feeding out cattle The animals pictured are approximately the same age. The HerdFlex™ embryo calf (left) is finished compared to the dairybeef crossbred (right) with 45-60 days left to finish.

Ask your CentralStar team about Simplot’s® SimVitro® HerdFlex™ beef embryos. Enhancing producer profitability through integrated services.

Consistent genetics

High carcass merit and marbling


Which path would you choose?

With CowManager Without CowManager Day 4-5 CowManager signals drop in rumination.


very cow going through transition experiences unique challenges. Knowing when to help is difficult. The graph to the right is an example of the two paths you can take to identify and monitor challenges cows face. CowManager® provides unparalleled insight into cow behavior, which increases lead time in identifying and treating metabolic issues before they become bigger problems. While CowManager does not eliminate transition cow problems, it helps you find sick cows faster, so they can be treated sooner. The results of those quick actions are increased profits, from more cost-effective treatments, and cows returning to peak performance sooner. All cows start out on the same path, but where they end depends on the route you choose. Which path do you choose?

The real cost of re-treatment. A review of a 3,000 head dairy revealed that cows with more than one metritis treatment achieved 3.5 lbs. less peak milk per lactation than cows with only one treatment. Early detection of health problems provides the most effective path to successful recovery, reducing treatment costs and speeding return to peak performance.

Day 4 Cow starts feeling poorly with mild invisible indications of metritis.

Day 0 Cow calves.

"We wish we had done it sooner!" A little over 12 months ago, Jan Van Vliet tried CowManager through the Seeing is Believing trial. Initially putting CowManager ear tags in 50 cows, Jan saw the benefits of the electronic herd health monitoring system right away and bought it before the trial was up. Today all 600+ cows at the Deckerville, Mich. dairy are monitored with CowManager, which Jan credits for helping the farm be more efficient and profitable. “Before CowManager we spent a lot of time every day in the fresh pen looking at all the cows. With CowManager we now go directly to the cows that need our attention, instead of rolling through the entire group," says Jan. "CowManager lets us be more proactive


and head off problems before cows get really sick. When we receive an alert that a cow is not “acting” normally we drench her right away. Previously we would not have seen cows like this begin to struggle because there are no outward signs. With CowManager it’s identified early, and we are able to fight off illness and keep them producing. You can find sick cows without CowManager, but it’s not as easy, and it’s usually too late. Our recovery rate from sickness is higher, and our culling rate is down because of CowManager. We’ve also found CowManager helpful in monitoring later lactation cows. These cows often do not get watched as closely, so • 800.631.3510

David Thoma, CentralStar A.I. Specialist and Jan Van Vliet family.

having CowManager alert us when something is wrong is really helpful. CowManager makes us more efficient and saves us time. It has reduced our labor needs for monitoring fresh cows, which allows us to do other things on the farm. We believe CowManager has already paid for itself. We only wish we had installed it sooner.”

Day 7-8 Treatment response favorable, returned to group.

Day 9 Normal eating & rumination behavior.

Day 5-6 Cow is treated.

Day 7 Drop in production observed. Cow is sorted and moved to sick pen, and is treated for metritis.

Day 10 Response to initial treatment not Day 12 favorable. Another Shows visual signs treatment is of not feeling Day 9 well, indicating Visual observation administered. a Displaced indicates cow is Abomasum. responding poorly to the first treatment.

Day 22 Cow returns to normal eating and rumination behavior, and finally leaves the sick pen and is returned to its group.

Day 14 Veterinarian diagnosis Displaced Abomasum. Surgery preformed. Cow remains in sick pen.


Try CowManager and experience the difference To often we hear, “I wish I had done it earlier.” Why wait? Try CowManager through the Seeing is Believing trial and see for yourself the positive impacts it has on herd health, reproduction and your bottom line. Contact a CentralStar CowManager Specialist for more details and to order your trial. Here's how it works. 1. Meet with a CowManager Specialist to explain your needs and desired goals and receive full details on how the trial works. 2. Our Specialists will assist with installation and provide training, allowing you to fully utilize the system.

Call the experts! In Wisconsin Scott Hecker: 920.374.0010 (southeast)

3. Have complete access to all of CowManager's features for health, fertility, and nutrition absolutely free.

Once you’ve decided you like it, and we know you will, the subscription-based purchase plan eliminates any big up-front costs, and your tag purchase for the trial is credited towards your purchase. Your subscription includes a lifetime warranty and free continual automatic software updates, so your system is never out of date.

Darin Klevgard: 608.434.4171 (northwest) Jared Krull: 715.851.6373 (northeast) Trevor Yager: 608.574.6142 (southwest) Indiana and Michigan

Enhancing producer profitability through integrated services.

Mark Affolder: 419.769.7007 Bree Muilenburg: 231.679.0233


Is your herd getting the protection it needs? Binders


Have a limited binding capacity.

Improved overall gut health will enhance the productivity of all production animals.

Must use much more than the suggested dose to see any real effect.

Effective with a single dose.

Net cost is invariably higher than DTX.

Reduce gut inflammation and enhance overall immune function.

Binders pass through the intestine and have no special association with tissues there.

Modulate immune system.

Binders have the capacity to bind up critical nutrients!


Take up space in the ration.

2020 Mycotoxin Report (Jan-July) <300



Parts per billion (ppb)

Select DTX is effective in every day situations, and when mycotoxin control is needed. The broad-spectrum L-form technology found in DTX goes beyond single toxin coverage, while proprietary Bacteria give added immunity. Ask your CentralStar team for more information and to have your feed sampled.


Combined DON

CentralStar awards $7,000 in scholarships


nnually, CentralStar awards seven $1,000 scholarships to individuals pursuing an education in agricultural-related fields. Congratulations to the following students for receiving scholarship funds this fall. Kathleen Yanke, Prairie du Sac, Wis., is the daughter of Herb and Cathy Yanke, Yanke Prairie Farms, Ltd. Collin Weltzien, Arcadia,

Kathleen Yanke


Collin Weltzien

Wis., is the son of Keith and Karen Weltzien, Weltzien Farms. Jessica Magdanz, Pine River, Wis., is from Magdanz Dairy, LLC, and is the daughter of Dan and Medora Magdanz. Sisters, Marie and Grace Haase, Somerset, Wis., daughters of Jason and Rose Haase, Haase Dairy Inc, will both receive scholarships. Rounding out the list of winners are Megan Breuch, Stoughton, Wis., daughter

Jessica Magdanz

Marie Haase

of Willie and Laurie Breuch, and Colin Wussow, Cecil, Wis., son of Ron and Nicolle Wussow, Milk-n-More Farms and Harvesting, LLC. The application period for the CentralStar 2021 scholarships will open this spring. Visit for more information.

Grace Haase • 800.631.3510

Megan Breuch

Colin Wussow

Consequences of ignoring BLV By: Kelly Sporer, PhD, Diagnostic Technical Specialist, CentralStar

Every day you make choices about priorities for your dairy. Bovine Leukosis, caused by Bovine Leukemia Virus (BLV), may not have made your priority list yet, but it should. New research continues to confirm its impact on production and profitability. Here is a glimpse of what happens when you ignore BLV. Milk production drops

Herd immunity is compromised

BLV influences the way a cow’s immune system works and in turn, likely affects her ability to fight off other infections. BLV-positive cows respond differently than their negative herdmates when vaccinated, implying that infected cows are not as protected against diseases for which they are immunized.

BLV's effect on Rolling Herd Average Rolling Herd Average (RHA)

Results of multiple studies show that BLV-positive cows with higher ELISA test values have lower predicted 305-day mature milk yields, in addition to a lower 12-month RHA. Results from three research studies1 show that each 10 percent increase in BLV prevalence is associated with a 428.9 pound loss in RHA per animal in the herd.

Three research studies show that each 10 percent increase in BLV prevalence was associated with a 428.9 lb. loss in RHA for each animal in the herd.

Percent BLV-positive animals in the herd

Cows don't live as long

It spreads

BLV is easily transmitted between animals by using the same needle or breeding sleeve on multiple animals. Increasing the risk even more are the animals that shed the most virus, called “Super-Shedders”. These animals are the most contagious and pose the greatest danger to infecting herdmates. More than 20 years ago USDA reported that 89 percent of all U.S. dairies were infected with bovine leukosis. A 20182 study discovered it's only getting worse with 94.2 percent of herds identified as having at least one BLV-positive cow.

BLV's effect on Life Expectancy

Survival Probability

BLV-positive cows are 23 percent more likely to leave the herd more quickly over the next two years compared to their negative herdmates. Research in over 100 Michigan herds shows a direct correlation between a higher BLV prevalence and the number of third and greater lactation cows that stay in a herd. BLV-positive cows with a higher ELISA value are less likely to stay in the herd, negatively impacting whole herd longevity.

Negative BLV-positive cows leave the herd approximately three months earlier compared to negative herdmates.


Days 1996 National Animal Health Monitoring Study (NAHMS), Michigan State University & CentralStar Cooperative,


2016 NAHMS. 22018 LaDronka, Veterinary Medicine International

Avoid the consequences Not sure how BLV is impacting your herd’s performance? No problem. You can easily and affordably learn and determine your herd's status by establishing a BLV herd index. Here's how: • Collect milk samples from the 40 freshest cows (10 animals for 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4+ lactations). • Ask your DHI Specialist to mark samples for BLV testing during routine test day, or submit samples direct to the lab. • Within 10 days of sample submission you will receive a BLV herd index and recommendations, followed by a phone consultation to discuss the strategies.


Armed with a BLV index, you will know your herd's prevalence, which enables you to make informed decisions to mitigate the consequences of BLV. Talk to your DHI Specialist or call 800.631.3510 to get started.

Enhancing producer profitability through integrated services.


Unlock the Value

of your milk samples Pregnancy

Presorted First Class U.S. Postage PAID Lansing, MI Permit #505

P.O. Box 23157, Lansing, MI 48909-3157 800.631.3510 • Return Service Requested

Johne’s A1/A2 BVD Leukosis Neospora Mastitis PCR

Testing milk samples is easier on you and your cows. Ask your CentralStar team to unlock the insights for your herd's production, health and physiology through milk samples. CentralStar, its agents or employees cannot and do not guarantee the conception rate, gender, quality or productivity to be obtained in connection with the use of its products or recommended techniques. It makes no warranties of any kind whatsoever, expressed or implied, which extend beyond the description of its products and hereby disclaims all warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. In the unlikely event that any of our products shall be proven to be defective, damages resulting from their use shall exclude consequential damages and be limited to the purchase price of the product. Find complete trademark and warranty statement at All gender SELECTed semen is processed using SexedULTRA technology. ™SexedULTRA and SexedULTRA 4M are trademarks of Inguran LLC.™gender SELECTed semen is a trademark of Select Sires Inc. ™NxGEN is a trademark of Select Sires. ®CowManager is a registered trademark of Agis Automatisering. Select DTX® is a trademark of Select Sires and manufactured by Agrarian Solutions, Middlebury, Indiana.

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