January 30, 2021 - Zone 2

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DAIRY ST R “All dairy, all the time”™

Volume 22, No. 23

January 30, 2021

Leachate collection project protects water quality Kocourek Bros. farm builds pit to contain feed pad runoff following expansion By Stacey Smart

stacey.s@dairystar.com

REEDSVILLE, Wis. – A large expansion in 2016 prompted the Kocourek family to rethink their means of handling runoff from their farm’s feed bunkers. Cow numbers more than doubled that year, and new bunkers were built to feed the farm’s growing herd. Dealing with twice as much runoff from

the expanded feed pad, the Kocoureks decided to tackle leachate collection in a different way. When the bunker was rst built, runoff was slowed by a berm but eventually found its way into a nearby ditch. The Kocoureks wanted to nd a more environmentally friendly solution for their expanding operation. The feed pad’s slight uphill location less than 50 yards from an intermittent stream posed a threat to local water quality. The stream travels through the Collins Marsh State Wildlife Area, which leads into the Manitowoc River and ultimately, Lake Michigan. The family found the answer in building a pit next

STACEY SMART/DAIRY STAR

STACEY SMART/DAIRY STAR

The Kocoureks built this leachate collec�on pit in 2017 to collect runoff from the farm’s feed pad, which is located less than 50 yards uphill from an intermittent stream.

Father-son duo Dennis (le�) and Brad Kocourek are part of their family’s dairy, Kocourek Bros., that milks 1,000 cows and farms 2,000 acres near Reedsville, Wisconsin. to the feed pad to collect runoff and a problem when you see it going into keep leachate out of local waterways. the pit,” said Dennis Kocourek. “But The Kocoureks worked with the De- when you pump it out, that’s when you partment of Natural Resources and the can tell. It’s dirty wastewater.” Dennis’ son, Brad, agreed. Natural Resources Conservation Ser“The ditch is a lot cleaner than it vice to complete the project by the fall of 2017. Turn to KOCOUREKS | Page 6 “You don’t think the runoff is really

Dairies need to operate as businesses Sipiorski outlines important plans producers need to be protable By Krista Kuzma

krista.k@dairystar.com

After a year like 2020, Gary Sipiorski wants producers to be more proactive when it comes to the business side of their dairy. “There are things we can do as dairy producers to prevent (volatility), and working with your lender is one of them,” Sipiorski said. … “Let’s face it; dairy producers have a great deal of assets invested, and they need to be able to work with a lender to make good use of those and yet have some boundaries of what makes sense to make sure everyone is successful.” Sipiorski, an agricultural business and nancial consultant, presented “Financial knowledge your banker wants you to know” Jan. 15 during a Minnesota Milk Minne-Series webinar. “We do need to plan,” he said about dairy farmers. “I know with cows, you get up in the morning, there are chores to do, cows to milk and other things. ... I’m going to encourage you to take a look at a longer-term

plan then just what the day to day is.” Planning is needed because of the volatility seen in 2020. The novel coronavirus pandemic caused major disruption in the food service industry, which is only back to $54 billion in sales compared to $68 billion before the start of the pandemic, Sipiorski said. Large swings in the milk price also meant more government aid, which accounted for 42% of net farm income in 2020. “We’re not talking gross income, we’re talking net income,” Sipiorski said. “That has been huge. Don’t expect that in the coming year.” Sipiorski said a plan can help a farm manage potential ination, which could happen as the country’s debt to revenue ratio increases. “What happens with ination is we have too many dollars chasing too few assets,” Sipiorski said. On a dairy, Sipiorski suggests the debt to revenue ratio should be 1-to-1. “I encourage you to look at your balance sheet,” he said. “Look at the amount of debt and divide it by the amount of revenue, the amount of gross income you’re generating on your farm. How close are you to 1-to-1?” On a per-cow level, Sipiorski said debt should not exceed $10,000 per cow, and from a production

standpoint, Sipiorski said not to exceed $20 of debt per hundredweight of milk. “We see some farms exceed up to 2-to-1 (debt to revenue ratio),” he said. “The concern is paying things back. I know interest rates are low right now. We have to be careful not to get too far out.” In the last 20 years, Sipiorski said the country’s private debt by individuals and debt from businesses has increased severely, with each category around the $14 trillion mark. “Is debt wrong?” Sipiorski said. “It is not. It’s OK to borrow money as long as you do it for the right purposes.” To stay ahead of ination and debt, Sipiorski said a dairy must have productive assets. Every dollar used to buy an asset should generate at least $1 in return. “Be care when you buy assets that don’t generate you enough income,” Sipiorski said. “A good example is a dairy cow. We can buy a good dairy cow for $1,500 and that cow will generate between $4,500 and $5,000 in income. That’s a good investment.” Sipiorski cautioned about high-priced tractor and land purchases. “Think about the return you’re going to get on Turn to PROFITABLE | Page 5


Page 2 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

DAIRY ST R www.dairystar.com

ISSN 020355 522 Sinclair Lewis Ave. Sauk Centre, MN 56378 Phone: (320) 352-6303 Fax: (320) 352-5647 Published by Dairy Star LLC General Manager/Editor Mark Klaphake - mark.k@dairystar.com 320-352-6303 (ofce) 320-248-3196 (cell) 320-352-0062 (home) Ad Composition Nancy Powell 320-352-6303 nancy.p@dairystar.com Consultant Jerry Jennissen 320-346-2292 Editorial Staff Krista Kuzma - Editor/Wisconsin (507) 259-8159 • krista.k@dairystar.com Andrea Borgerding - Associate Editor (320) 352-6303 • andrea.b@dairystar.com Jennifer Coyne - Assistant Editor (320) 352-6303 • jenn@dairystar.com Danielle Nauman (608) 487-1101 danielle.n@dairystar.com Stacey Smart - Staff Writer (262) 442-6666 • stacey.s@dairystar.com Maria Bichler - Copy Editor 320-352-6303 Advertising Sales Main Ofce: 320-352-6303 Fax: 320-352-5647 Deadline is 5 p.m. of the Friday the week before publication Sales Manager - Joyce Frericks 320-352-6303 • joyce@dairystar.com Bob Leukam (Northern MN, East Central MN) 320-260-1248 (cell) bob.l@star-pub.com Mark Klaphake (Western MN) 320-352-6303 (ofce) 320-248-3196 (cell) Laura Seljan (National Advertising, SE MN) 507-250-2217 fax: 507-634-4413 laura.s@dairystar.com Jerry Nelson (SW MN, NW Iowa, South Dakota) 605-690-6260 jerry.n@dairystar.com Mike Schafer (Central, South Central MN) 320-894-7825 mike.s@dairystar.com Amanda Hoeer (Eastern Iowa) 320-250-2884 • amanda.h@dairystar.com Julie Barnes (SE WI and Northern IL) julie.b@dairystar.com Megan Stuessel (Western Wisconsin) 608-387-1202 • megan.s@dairystar.com Kati Kindschuh (Northeast WI and Upper MI) 920-979-5284 • kati.k@dairystar.com Deadlines The deadline for news and advertising in the Dairy Star is 5 p.m. Friday the week before publication. Subscriptions One year subscription $35.00, outside the U.S. $110.00. Send check along with mailing address to Dairy Star, 522 Sinclair Lewis Ave., Sauk Centre, MN 56378. Advertising Our ad takers have no authority to bind this newspaper and only publication of an advertisement shall constitute nal acceptance of the advertiser's order. Letters Letters and articles of opinion are welcomed. Letters must be signed and include address and phone number. We reserve the right to edit lengthy letters. The views and opinions expressed by Dairy Star columnists and writers are not necessarily those of the Dairy Star LLC.

The Dairy Star is published semi-monthly by Dairy Star, LLC, 522 Sinclair Lewis Ave., Sauk Centre, MN 56378-1246. Periodicals Postage Paid at Sauk Centre, MN and additional mailing ofces. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Dairy Star, 522 Sinclair Lewis Ave., Sauk Centre, MN 56378-1246.

A glance at the other side

Dairy Star likes to provide local stories, which is why we have two versions of the paper. Below are a few highlights from stories you will not nd in this paper, but you can nd online in zone 1. Find full editions on our website, www.dairystar.com, and click on the e-edition tab under the Dairy Star header. Time for an update The Roller family recently changed the facilities on their dairy to improve cow comfort and minimize labor. Ryan Roller, his wife, Amy, and parents, Gene and Brenda, built a new 62-cow freestall, 30-cow bedded pack, tunnel ventilated facility and swing-10 milking parlor. The family hopes the new facility will help keep their farm, located near Hewitt, Minn., viable for years to come. Pattison’s unique dairy team Lee and Sara Pattison have 12 milking robots on their 700-cow dairy, and one special herdsman. Jessica (Schramm) Lansing never touched a cow until she was 19 but has been the dairy’s herdsman for the past ve years. The farm near Garnavillo, Iowa is grateful for the unique expertise Lansing brings to their farm. MDI has team mindset The Minnesota Dairy Initiative is taking a team approach in 2021 as they celebrate 25 years of helping dairy farmers with business and strategic plans. Leah Bischof, Minnesota state director, shared the program’s upcoming goals and how they plan to achieve them in the coming years. Malecha is an author Louise Malecha along with daughter, Katelynn, has published a children’s book. The book, “Going to Papa and Nana’s Farm,” is about two children visiting their grandparents farm, based on Malecha’s grandchildren and the family’s dairy farm near Villard, Minn. Katelynn contributed all the illustrations to the book, which was published in January.

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Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 3

It’s all inside... Columnists

Sexed semen: How to optimize fertility First Section: Page 12

Juneau

First Section: Page 39

Richland

O Waushara

Jo Daviess

Carroll

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Walworth go

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n Win Ogle

Whiteside

Mercer on

First Section: Pages 34 - 35, 37

Kenosha

Daane Dairy replaces hoop barn for improved youngstock care First Section: Pages 10 - 11

Kane

Lee

Rock Island

Hen ders

Kliebenstein enjoys in-home bakery business

Racine

Brandon

McHenry

DeKalb

Darlington

Do or

Jefferson Waukesha

Rock

ens

h tep

S

Zone 2

aun ee

Green Lake Fond Du Lac

Dane

Lafayette Green

For additional stories from our other zone, log on to www.dairystar.com

o ag Calumet

eb

nn Wi

Columbia Dodge

Sauk

Iowa

Grant

Zone 1

ie am Brown

for

Dairy Prole: Miles Opitz

d

Vernon

Belmont

Oconto

g uta

Adams

Monroe La Crosse

Madison

Pages 8 - 9 Second Section

Jackson

te

Shawano

Wood

aw

The “Mielke” Market Weekly

Buffalo

Menominee

Portage Waupaca

Cr

Page 33 First Section

Pepin

et

Ke w

Page 32 First Section

in

Langlade

Marathon

Clark

Eau Claire

ar

Menominee

ton S he bo Milwaukee Ozauk M yg ee an anito wo c

Pierce

Dunn

Forest

Lincoln

Taylor

Chippewa

M

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Just Thinking Out Loud

Dairy Good Life

hb

St. Croix

Oneida

Rusk

Barron

ren

Wa sh

Third Section: Page 7

Price

Delta

Dickinson

Vilas

Flo

Sawyer

Trempealeau

Dairy’s Working Youth: Dana Johnson

Polk

Iron

e

ur

Tomah

Second Section: Page 13

First Section: Pages 1, 6 - 7

Ashland

Wa s

Burnett

Page 30 First Section

Page 31 First Section

Bayeld

Douglas

n

Recipes from the heart

Third Section: Pages 3 - 4

on

Page 27 First Section

People in Dairy: Greg Abts

Kocourek Bros. farm builds pit to contain feed pad runoff following expansion

Bo

First Section: Pages 22 - 23

New Franken

Reedsville

Wegners enjoy herd of older cows

ett e

A winter getaway

Something to Ruminate On

Marsheld

Penterman to lead Dairy Business Association as president

qu

Thorp

Pages 8-9 First Section

Ma r

Ag Insider

FROM OUR SIDE OF THE FENCE: n

re War

What farm projects have you completed because of the moderate weather this winter? First Section: Pages 15-16


Page 4 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

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ConƟnued from PROFITABLE | Page 1

them,” he said. According to Sipiorski, the top 30% of dairy producers in the United States earn $1.25 more per hundredweight of milk compared to the average producer. “I’m going to encourage you to get your nancials together,” he said. “This is a good time to do it. You can’t plant corn tomorrow so you need to get all your numbers in line, not only for your accountant for your taxes, but for your knowledge and your plan and to know what your protability is.” That $1.25 can add up to a signicant amount of money over time. “This is real money, and we need to gure out how to capture those kinds of dollars,” Sipiorski said. Capturing as much prot as possible is important as production in the country continues to climb, the number of cull cows going to slaughter does not add up to where it should be to keep production down and grain prices increasing. “Work closely with who does your nutrition work,” Sipiorski said. “It’s possible we might be short with energy on corn and soybeans (because of the increased price).” Going into 2021, producers will be working on taxes. “Please do not run your farm based on your 2020 income tax return,” Sipiorski said. “That’s a terrible way to look at it.” Sipiorski said he thinks many producers manipulated the amount of taxes they paid by prepaying before the close of 2020. “We can really distort the income on a farm by the amount of depreciation taken by doing prepayments,” he said. “Be careful of that.” Other paperwork to take care of is an accurate year-end balance sheet. “At the 31st of December, you need to spend a few days before taking inventories of feed and cattle,” Sipiorski said. “If you haven’t done your balance sheet, do it. Get the numbers as accurate as you can – the assets and liabilities. Compare last year’s net worth to this year’s net worth.” Follow that by doing an accurate accrual income statement. “This is different than your taxes, but you’re still going to use income and expense,” Sipiorski said. “For example, if you paid an extra $50,000 fee in 2020 and will use it in 2021, you have to back that out. If you do your income

Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 5

statement, it’s going to show you had a lot more expenses than really what you did have. You need to do the same with cattle and feed inventories.” Talking to a lender about current low interest rates and restructuring loans is also something many farmers should be doing, Sipiorski said. “We are in a different year of dairy farming,” he said. “It used to be if you took care of your cattle and your crops, you made money. And I can’t think of a better place to raise a family than on a farm. Today, we have to run the farm rst with the numbers, take a look at those and then we can make decisions on how to make our farm better.” Other benchmarks to pay attention to include net worth, working capital, return on assets, return on equity, operating expense and cost of production and asset turnover. “Can you turn (a prot from) it in three years?” Sipiorski said. “If not, you have too many assets that are not productive and generating enough income.” Having a cash income project is also important. Knowing this information is important to running a successful business; however, Sipiorski said 20% of producers have a written business plan based on true cash income statement. “Only 20% of dairy farmers do this and it ought to be much higher than that,” he said. Milk marketing might be a part of this plan. “If you’re going to do marketing, you have to educate yourself,” Sipiorski said. “Don’t just go out and start pulling triggers on marketing milk if you don’t understand what you’re getting into.” Sipiorski suggested farmers work with cooperatives, brokers or extension agents to nd more information. Overall, Sipiorski said it is important for dairy farmers to write down business, marketing and transition plans, and communicate often with their lender. “Want to get a lender’s attention? Show them you’ve done a cash projection. Lenders appreciate when you sit down with them early and you bring information to them,” Sipiorski said. “Less than 10% of producers will come in with the type of business plan I’m talking about. But we’ve got to do it today based on what we’re facing in agriculture.”

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ConƟnued from KOCOUREKS | Page 1

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used to be,” Brad said. “It’s cleaner around the bunkers too. There used to be standing water by the berm, but we don’t have that anymore.” Brothers Dennis and Donald farm with Dennis’ sons, Brad and Eric, and Donald’s son, Andrew. The Kocoureks milk 1,000 cows and farm 2,000 acres near Reedsville. Dennis and Donald are starting the process of bringing their sons into the operation as partners. Dennis and Donald farmed separately at rst, each milking 50 cows until 1995 when they bought the current farm from their father. Bringing their herds together, the brothers built a barn for 300 cows and put in a double-8 herringbone parlor in the stanchion barn. This is also the year they built the farm’s rst bunker. “In hindsight, I wouldn’t have built the feed pad so close to the ditch,” Dennis said. “We discussed moving our feed system when we expanded in 2016, but we had too much invested in

it to change locations.” In 2007, the farm grew again when Dennis and Donald expanded the barn and increased cow numbers to 450. The year 2016 was a milestone year for the Kocourek brothers when three of their sons came back to the farm. With the next generation poised to enter the picture, the Kocoureks prepared for an expansion. Another addition was made to the barn to accommodate 550 additional cows, bringing the building to 800 feet in length. The barn was outtted with tunnel ventilation, and a new double-16 parallel milking parlor was built. At this time, the family also added a manure pit and more feed bunkers. An expansion of this magnitude meant the farm would have to become a Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation. “Our expansion had to be approved by the DNR, and the rst step was to Turn to KOCOUREKS | Page 7

STACEY SMART/DAIRY STAR

The freestall barn was most recently expanded in 2016 when cow numbers more than doubled, bringing the barn to 800 feet in length.

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Conďż˝nued from KOCOUREKS | Page 6 become a CAFO,â€? Brad said. “We started that process a year and a half before breaking ground.â€? Brad was the go-to guy on the CAFO portion. After graduating from Fox Valley Technical College with a degree in agricultural business, Brad worked at Country Visions Cooperative in Reedsville for ďƒžve years and had experience helping farms develop CAFO plans.

“It’s deďƒžnitely better to collect the runo and put it on cropland versus putting it in the ditch.â€? BRAD KOCOUREK, DAIRY FARMER

“The feed pad was the only area of the farm that was not contained,â€? Brad said. “At ďƒžrst, we planned to do a vegetation treatment area, but the DNR is trying to eliminate those. Instead, they are working towards 100% collection of runoff from feed pads.â€? The pad, which measures about 250 feet by 200 feet, contains a commodity shed and four bunkers used for storing corn silage and haylage. Located 50 feet from the feed pad, the 1-million-gallon leachate pit is lined with reinforced concrete. The Kocoureks replaced the concrete in front of the four bunkers and added concrete around the existing feed pad, which slopes toward the pit. Runoff from three of the four bunkers funnels into a culvert, which feeds into the collection pit, while runoff from the newest bunker ďƒ&#x;ows directly into the pit. “It’s a simple leachate collection

STACEY SMART/DAIRY STAR

Runo from three of the four bunkers funnels into a culvert, which feeds into the collecďż˝on pit, while runo from this newest bunker ďƒ&#x;ows directly into the pit. system,â€? Brad said. “There is no electricity here for pumps, etc. We pump out the pit twice a year with a normal lagoon pump.â€? The Kocoureks put in a berm on the south side of the feed pad and installed tile all the way around the bunkers 10 feet from the walls. They also added tile around the pit itself along with test tubes as a further level of protection to allow for testing if the pit were to leach. Per county requirement, a wire mesh fence was installed around the pit.

“We try to empty the pit on ďƒžrstcrop hay and then again in the fall,â€? Dennis sad. “Sometimes we use the water for ďƒ&#x;ushing our manure systems too. We made the pit big because we wanted to have enough room. It’s nearly full when we empty it.â€? Believers in adopting practices that are good for the environment, the Kocourek family is devoted to caring for their land and working with agencies to develop and execute conservation efforts.

“We had an amazing experience with the DNR,â€? Dennis said. “The whole process went really smooth.â€? By building a containment area for feed pad runoff, the Kocoureks are preserving the stream that runs through their farm and doing their part to keep local waterways clean and safe. “It’s deďƒžnitely better to collect the runoff and put it on cropland versus putting it in the ditch,â€? Brad said.

airy’s D t s e w id M o t d You’re Invite

A T O S E N N I 2021 M

g n i t e e M t c Distri Due to current COVID-19 restrictions and out of concern for the safety of all participants, the 2021 Minnesota District Meetings will be held virtually through Zoom. Join us on February 17 at 11:30 a.m. to learn about the work Midwest Dairy accomplished in 2020, as well as hearing new strategy plans for 2021-2023. The general session will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., followed by district breakout sessions. This is your opportunity to hear from the Midwest Dairy Minnesota Division Board leadership, % 3!/0 %.5Äš/ ĆŤ +((5 !(6!.ÄŒ * % 3!/0 %.5 /0 Ýċ $! .! '+10 .++)/ 3%(( ! facilitated by your district leaders to gather feedback and attend to district business.

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Dramatic policy change is likely Page 8 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

When one political party controls the White would be the rst woman of color to serve in this role House, House and Senate, big policy changes at USDA. can be expected. Pro Farmer Policy Analyst Jim Wiesemeyer said President Biden’s rst priority is the USDA names three Deputy Under Secretaries for distribution of the COVID vaccine “We Biden Administration haven’t had a successful implementation The new Deputy Under Secretary for Ag Insider and distribution. Climate change will Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services also be addressed. I think one of the is Stacy Dean. Dean previously worked real reasons former Ag Secretary Tom at the Center on Budget and Policy Vilsack decided to come back to USDA Priorities and the Ofce of Management is climate policy. That’s a challenge to and Budget. The Deputy Under Secretary Vilsack.” Biden will also concentrate on for Rural Development is Justin Maxson, immigration policy and infrastructure, who previously worked at the Mary including rural broadband. Reynolds Babcock Foundation. The Deputy Under Secretary of Marketing An ‘America rst’ attitude and Regulatory Programs is Mae Wu, Combest Sell and Associates who previously worked at the Natural managing partner Tom Sell said the Resource Defense Council. By Don Wick Trump Administration had an impact on Columnist agriculture, especially international trade Senior USDA staff positions announced policy. “There’s no question President Dr. Gregory Parham is the interim Trump brought an ‘America rst’ attitude and the deputy assistant secretary for administration. Parham idea we need to stand by American production,” Sell served in the same role from 2013-2016. The new chief said. “The administration wanted to revamp trade of staff for the Ofce of the Secretary is Katharine policies, and this was painful at times for agriculture.” Ferguson. Ferguson had served in the Obama The Trump Administration also administered record Administration as the chief of staff for the White payments to farmers to help them get through House Domestic Policy Council. Robert Bonnie has those tough times. By using the Commodity Credit been named the undersecretary for Natural Resources Corporation, Sell said a precedent was established. and Environment and senior advisor to Secretary “Whether that will be carried forward in this Vilsack during the Obama years. Bonnie has now new administration we don’t know, but it was an been named the deputy chief of staff for policy and the extraordinary action taken by the administration.” senior climate advisor in the Ofce of the Secretary. Matt Herrick is the new communications director for Bronough is the nominee for USDA Deputy Ag USDA. Most recently, Herrick had a similar role for Secretary the International Dairy Foods Association. During the President Joe Biden announced sub-cabinet Obama Administration, Herrick was a spokesperson positions including Deputy Ag Secretary nominee for USDA and the U.S. Agency for International Jewell Bronaugh. Bronaugh currently serves as Development. the commissioner of the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. She’s been a Food box program contracts awarded former State Executive Director for the Farm Service USDA has approved contracts for the fth round Agency and a 4-H Extension Specialist. Bronaugh of the Farmers to Families Food Box program. This

program provides fresh produce, milk and dairy products and meat. In total, USDA has distributed more than 133 million food boxes to support the farmers and families affected by the pandemic. Another lawsuit challenging wolf delisting The Humane Society of the United States is suing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for delisting wolves from federal protection. The lawsuit claims the government is violating the Endangered Species Act and its legal duty to protect wolves. This issue has been in and out of the courts since 2003. Evers addresses dairy conference Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers touted his support for the dairy industry during the Dairy Business Association virtual Dairy Strong Conference. Praise was also given for the resilience of the dairy industry during the coronavirus pandemic. “You worked hard and tirelessly to ensure Wisconsites and Americans across our country had food on the table, all while incorporating new health precautions into your operations. That’s why you have been and will continue to be essential to our state.” Climate change and broadband were cited as policy priorities. Legislative leader passes The rst woman to chair the House Assembly Committee on Agriculture has passed. Barb Gronemus, 89, was a Democrat from Whitehall. Gronemus was in the Assembly from 1982 to 2009. DBA recognizes Advocate of the Year The Dairy Business Association has named Mitch Breunig of Sauk City as the 2021 Advocate of the Year. Breunig is a past president of the Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin and is the chairman of the Dairy Innovation Hub Advisory Council.

Turn to AG INSIDER | Page 9

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Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 9

ConƟnued from AG INSIDER | Page 8 Krentz elected to AFBF role Wisconsin Farm Bureau President Kevin Krentz has been elected to the American Farm Bureau Federation board of directors. Krentz is a dairy farmer from Berlin.

after the removal of a national ofcer because he violated the code of conduct making diversity statements on social media. National FFA will now begin discussions on the selection of a new chief executive ofcer.

Rosado takes a policy role with IDFA Robert Rosado is the new senior director of legislative affairs for the International Dairy Foods Association. Most recently, Rosado was a senior staff member for the Senate Agriculture Committee. Previously, Rosado worked for the Food Marketing Institute, Biotechnology Industry Organization and American Meat Institute.

Trivia challenge Emmental is a hard, yellow Swissmade cheese that is known as a good melting cheese. That answers our last trivia question. For this week, what Italian cheese is made from heating the whey left over from the cheese making process? We’ll have the answer in the next edition of Dairy Star. Don Wick is owner/broadcaster for the Red River Farm Network, based in Grand Forks, North Dakota. Wick has been recognized as the National Farm Broadcaster of the Year and served as president of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting. Don and his wife, Kolleen, have two adult sons, Tony and Sam, and ve grandchildren, Aiden, Piper, Adrienne, Aurora, and Sterling.

Poeschl resigns from National FFA National FFA CEO Mark Poeschl has resigned. In a statement, Poeschl said there have been challenges faced during his tenure, but his intentions were for the best interests of FFA and student members. The National FFA has been dealing with a lawsuit

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Page 10 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

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STACEY SMART/DAIRY STAR

The Daane family – (from leŌ) Dusty, Ron, DeeDee VanHise, Collin VanHise, and Clay – stand in the calf barn they built in 2018. The Daanes milk 630 cows and farm 1,300 acres near Brandon, Wisconsin. Not pictured is DeeDee’s husband, Ryan VanHise.

Daane Dairy replaces hoop barn for improved youngstock care By Stacey Smart

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BRANDON, Wis. – When the Daanes started running out of room for calves, building a new barn for the farm’s youngest animals became a necessity. Offering plenty of space, the cleaner and drier structure replaced the hoop barn where calves previously resided. Improved living conditions have brought more comfort to calves and their caretakers. For this family of progressive dairymen, the new facility has proven to be the perfect building for raising calves. Three generations of Daanes farm together near Brandon, milking 630 cows and farming 1,300 acres. Ron Daane considers himself fortunate to be farming with three of his nine adult children, as well as a son-inlaw and grandson. Ron’s sons, Dusty and Clay, and his daughter, DeeDee VanHise, work alongside their father at Daane Dairy along with DeeDee’s husband, Ryan, and their son, Collin. “I couldn’t have asked for a better bunch of kids to work with,” Ron said. “Dusty, Clay and DeeDee get along like clockwork. Ryan and Collin are an instrumental part of this farm too. I’m truly blessed.” Dusty is in charge of crops and maintenance; Clay is the herdsman and nancial guy; DeeDee is Clay’s assistant and does all the breeding, takes care of calves and handles payroll and other human resource items while also sharing bookwork duties with Clay. Ryan is Dusty’s right-hand man and does most of the feeding while Collin hauls the farm’s milk and helps Dusty

wherever needed. Ron is the farm’s general manager. The farm has been growing since 1998 when Ron and his wife, Helene, and Dusty and his wife, Missy, purchased the current site and built a new dairy after Ron and Helene suffered a barn re in 1996 at their farm near Waupun. “After the re, we milked our cows on the farm Dusty owned,” Ron said. “Together, we were milking 150 cows in a 32-stall barn. We did a lot of switching.” Ron and Dusty formed an LLC Oct. 1, 1997. They were milking a little over 200 cows when they moved to the new farm near Brandon. Anticipating future expansion, the Daanes built a double-12 parlor with capacity to milk up to 700 cows three times a day. A couple years after moving in, they added 100 more cows and built a dry cow barn. In 2010, DeeDee and Clay joined the LLC. The following year, the family built another freestall barn, increasing the herd to its current size and also put in a manure pit and composter. In 2017, the Daanes built a new shop/shed and also hosted Fond du Lac County’s Breakfast on the Farm. The farm’s most recent addition occurred in 2018 when the Daanes built a new calf barn. Calves moved into the bright and spacious building that October when construction on the 44-foot by 154foot barn was complete. “We needed a bigger, more modern facility,” DeeDee said. Similar to a greenhouse-style building, the old calf barn housed 60 to 70 calves in single crates, whereas the new barn has room for 100 animals. Calves start in individual pens, and after two weeks, are housed in groups of ve in a 10-by-10 pen. There are 20 pens total with 10 on each side of the barn, which features a simple system for shifting from individual to group housing. “There are ve crates in each pen, and we just pull out the panels and group the calves together in the same spot,” Ron said. “We don’t have to move animals. They stay in the same larger pen the whole time they’re here.” Conveniences like automatic waterers give calves access to clean, fresh water while reducing labor for the Daanes. “In the old barn, we had to manually feed water,” DeeDee said. “But in the new barn, watering is automated. Calves can eat STACEY SMART/DAIRY STAR

Daane Dairy’s new tunnel-venƟlated calf barn features 20 10-foot by 10-foot pens with capacity for up to 100 calves.

Turn to DAANE | Page


Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 11

ConƟnued from DAANES | Page 10 and drink more, and the water doesn’t freeze. They’re growing good in here.” The tunnel-ventilated barn has seven fans on the north end and a 2-foot curtain opening on the opposite end that can be adjusted as the temperature changes. “It’s a more controlled environment than what we had before,” Ron said. “There’s better airow in this barn.” The barn keeps out the elements, which the Daanes appreciate. “The best thing is we don’t get snow or rain in our new barn like we did in our old calf barn,” DeeDee said. “Everything stays dry and clean. It’s a better environment for calves and people.” Clay agreed. “The barn’s layout and de-

sign also make it easier to clean and maintain,” Clay said. Calves are weaned at 8 weeks and sent to a custom heifer raiser between 8 and 9 weeks old – a practice the Daanes have done ever since building their new dairy. Calves are fed pasteurized milk through a nipple feeding system, which is delivered to each pen by a Milk Taxi. “When we switched from milk replacer to pasteurized milk 10 years ago, we saw a big difference in calf health and growth,” Ron said. Over time, Daane Dairy has seen many improvements and updates, as the Daanes are always on the lookout for ways to better their operation. “Two things that really improved this farm were switching from mats to compost bedding

STACEY SMART/DAIRY STAR

Calves are housed in individual pens for the rst two weeks of life. When making the switch to group housing, the Daanes pull out the panels and animals remain within the same larger pen.

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Allis Chalmers 8010, 2WD, Band Duals Allis Chalmers WD45 Case IH MX 270 FWA, 16.9R30 Fr Dls, 20.8R42 R Dls. 5,615 hrs MF 4610 FWA cab tractor, MF 936 Self-Level Loader & Bucket NHTL100A, 2007, FWA, 6,600 hrs, loader & 7’ bucket NH TC29DA Compact tractor w/72” midmount deck 1,596 hrs.

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Gleaner S67 Combine, 2011, 1451 sep, 2263 eng. Gleaner S67 Combine, ‘11, duals , 1187 sep, 1558 eng, nice GLEANER S77 COMBINE 2012 DUALS, 1,670 SEP, 2373 E. HRS Gleaner R75 Combine, 2004, Duals, 1982 Sep, 2719 E, very nice Gleaner 8000-20 Flex Head Lateral Tilt, 2005 Gleaner 500-20 Flex Head, R mounts, needs work, sold as is Gleaner 3000 630R Corn Head, 2002 Gleaner 3000 630R Corn Head, 2008 Gleaner 3000 830R Corn Head, 2012 Gleaner 3000 830R Corn Head, 2004 Gleaner 313 w/Renn 5 belt pickup header, will ðt newer LTL combines Harvestec 4308C Cutter Corn Head 8 Row 30” GL Mounts Harvestec 4308C Cutter Corn Head 8 Row 30” JD Mount Harvestec 4308C Cutter Corn Head 8 Row 30” NH/Case IH Mount ‘08

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Case SR220 Skid Steer, Cab, Heat, A/C, 2 Speed, 3417 hrs. Mustang 1750RT, ‘18 track loader, pilot controls, 2 speed, 76 hrs Mustang 2076, ‘12 1200 hrs., H/F ctrls, cab, w/heat, 2 spd. Mustang 2041 3,700 hrs, cab/heat, H/F controls, universal mount NH L228 Skid Steer, 410 hrs, H/F Controls, 2 speed, cab

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STACEY SMART/DAIRY STAR

The Daane family built this 44-foot by 154-foot calf barn to replace a smaller hoop barn that previously housed calves. and changing our feed storage from bags to piles,” Ron said. “Bedding with compost was a big improvement in cow comfort, and going from bags to piles improved our feed and made a big difference in our components. The bags chewed up the feed. With piles, we could better regulate length of cut.” The Daanes do their eld work and manure hauling. “We bought a drag hose system with our neighbor last year, and now we spread as much manure as we can with that,” Dusty said. “It’s been really benecial.” Focused on improvement versus growth, the Daane family is set up for success using facilities and technologies designed to boost efciency and productivity.

John Deere 582 Silage Special Round Baler 4X5, 19,434 bales McHale V660 Round Baler, 4X6, Cutter Baler NH BR7090, 2011, round baler, 11,755 bales, Corn Stalk Special New Holland BR7070, 2014, round baler, 14,059 bales, Crop Cutter New Holland RB560, 2017, Round Baler 1,176 bales, like new Vermeer 504N round baler Krone BP4X4XC 4X4 Large Square Baler, 2012 with 19,000 bales Krone Swadro 810 rotary rake, 2-point mount H&S V10 cart rake, very good condition JD 946 Mower Conditioner, 2-Point Mount, 2013 MF 1329 3-pt. Disc Mower, 9’ cut, 2013 Art’s way 240C Stalk Chopper, 2015, 20’ Width, Low Acres

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Calves are housed in groups of ve starƟng at two weeks of age. Calves receive pasteurized milk through a nipple feeding system, and each pen contains an automaƟc waterer.

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Page 12 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

Sexed semen: How to optimize fertility

Research shows delaying insemination time is not best option By Stacey Smart

stacey.s@dairystar.com

MADISON, Wis. – Motivated by the desire to get more heifer calves out of a farm’s best cows, the use of sexed semen in dairy herds has grown dramatically in the last ve years. Sexed semen was introduced to the industry in 2006, and according to AgSource, 20% of all Holstein breedings used sexed semen in 2020 compared to 8% in 2015. In Jerseys, that number was much higher last year at up to 45%. Dr. Paul Fricke, Ph.D., dairy reproduction specialist and professor of dairy science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, expects these gures to continue to climb. Fricke shared background and new research on sexed semen during a Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin Dairy Signal podcast to help shed light on ways of maximizing the fertility of sexed semen. The studies looked at timing of articial insemination when using sexed semen in rst-lactation cows and non-lactating heifers. “Sexed semen is a large investment in a farm’s reproduction program, therefore, we want to use it the best way we know how,” Fricke said. “I think a lot of people are trying to use sexed semen the same way they would use conventional semen. But in randomized controlled trials, sexed semen has about 80%-85% of the fertility of conventional semen.” When creating sexed semen, sperm are stained with dye and sorted or killed by a laser. As a result, many sperm are damaged or wasted, making it a less fertile option than conventional semen. Therefore,

breeding at the optimal time becomes even more important. Recent research disproves a concept in the industry that delaying timing of A.I. when using sexed semen is better for fertility. The idea that inseminating later relative to the onset of activity or estrus will lead to increased fertility with sexed semen was tested by Fricke and his team within a synchronized breeding protocol in which timing of ovulation was precisely controlled. Paul Fricke UW-Madison “One of the negatives of breeding cows to an estrus is that onset of activity is not an exact predictor of when they are going to ovulate,” Fricke said. “You don’t really put semen into cows at an optimal time when you inseminate to an estrus or increased activity. Fortunately, with conventional semen, timing is not as critical because it lasts quite a while in the reproductive tract.” Fricke’s team tested the hypothesis that the induction of ovulation earlier relative to a timed A.I. in a Double-Ovsynch protocol will result in more pregnancies per A.I. The study was done on rst-lactation cows on three farms in Nebraska, Ohio and Wisconsin. All farms submitted cows for rst timed A.I. using a Double-Ovsynch protocol in which cows were inseminated 8 to 12 hours later than normal at 24 hours after induction of ovulation. The recommended interval from induction of ovulation to time of insemination using conventional semen is 16 hours. “We know they’re going to ovulate about 28 hours after the nal GnRH treatment of the protocol so that gives us the

right timing for the best fertility,” Fricke said. “We modied the Double-Ovsynch protocol. Rather than giving the GnRH treatment in the afternoon, we moved it to the morning. That way, we’re inducing ovulation earlier so the interval from induction of ovulation to time of insemination is 24 hours. This is about the time they’re going to ovulate.” However, the modication proved negative for fertility. Cows inseminated 24 hours after the last GnRH treatment had fewer pregnancies per A.I. than cows inseminated at 16 hours, experiencing a decrease of 6 percentage points. In a similar study done on pasturebased herds in Ireland, cows were inseminated later rather than moving the time of the GnRH treatment. Cows were bred at 16-hour or 22-hour intervals, and the number of pregnancies per A.I. did not differ between the two groups. Breeding later did not increase fertility. In both scenarios, the conception rate for sexed semen was 80%85% that of conventional semen. Research shows the ability to synchronize ovulation and do timed inseminations in heifers helps improve conception rates. A study from the University of Florida looked at different protocols where heifers were inseminated with conventional or sexed semen. Heifers inseminated with conventional semen showed no difference in fertility if bred to estrus or timed A.I. However, breeding with sexed semen to an estrus resulted in signicantly lower conception rates as compared to timed A.I. “This really piqued our interest,” Fricke said. “It probably reects the fact you have to be very close to the right timing with sexed semen, likely because the sperm is damaged and has a shorter lifespan in the reproductive tract.” The recommended protocol in this study involved GnRH treatment, a CIDR

device for ve days, two treatments of prostaglandin and a timed A.I., yielding a 59% conception rate when using sexed semen. “We feel that once-a-day detection of estrus is not frequent enough when using sexed semen,” Fricke said. “Furthermore, the biggest cost to raising heifers is days on feed which is determined by when they get pregnant. If you wait for estrus, you’re delaying days to rst A.I.” Another study at the University of Florida conducted in 2020 looked at the effect of breeding heifers later when using a ve-day CIDR protocol. Half of the heifers in the study were inseminated 12 hours later than normal. For those bred with conventional semen, fertility was fairly standard. But conception rates with sexed semen were not good. “Research shows that if you’re using a timed A.I. protocol in rst-lactation animals, use the standard timing in that protocol when inseminating with sexed semen,” Fricke said. “In a Double-Ovsynch protocol, you would give the last GnRH treatment in the afternoon and breed the following morning.” Fricke and his team are wrapping up research that compares various treatment protocols and breeding strategies when using sexed semen on non-lactating heifers. One study examines the fertility of Holstein heifers inseminated with sexed semen after ve-day or six-day CIDR-synch protocols or once-daily detection of estrus after treatment with prostaglandin F2 alpha. In addition, Fricke’s team is doing a feed cost analysis to determine cost per pregnancy based on pregnancy rates yielded by different breeding protocols. Their ndings will be published this year. “At an $18 premium per straw, sexed semen is a big investment,” Fricke said. “Therefore, you want to make sure you maximize fertility.”

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Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 13

Central Plains Dairy Expo slated for March 24-25 Extensive COVID-19 safety precautions will be in place By Jerry Nelson

jerry.n@dairystar.com

NEW PRAGUE, Minn. – Last March, the 2020 Central Plains Dairy Expo was canceled due to the initial outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. The Central Plains Dairy Expo gives producers an opportunity to connect with others in the industry, and to see the latest and greatest technology. This year, however, the Central Plains Dairy Expo will be held March 24-25 at the Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Extensive precautions will be taken to make the expo experience as safe as possible for all who attend. “The health and the safety of expo attendees and exhibitors is our top priority,â€? said Renee Brod, associate executive director of the Central Plains Dairy Association. “Because of this, we made the tough decision to forgo holding a welcome concert this year.â€? The Central Plains Dairy Expo will kick off with the Ag Prayer Breakfast, which will be held at 7 a.m. Wednesday, March 24. The doors of the Denny Sanford Premier Center will open at 6:30. “The ďƒžrst 300 attendees at the Ag Prayer Breakfast will receive a free hot bag breakfast,â€? Brod said. “Socially distanced tables will be placed on the ďƒ&#x;oor of the Premier Center. The bleachers will also be opened up for seating during the breakfast.â€? Some of the enhanced health safety measures include up to 4,000 masks that will be made available by Zoetis. Hand sanitizer stations will be located throughout the venue. The side curtains of the exhibitors’ booths have been increased from 3 feet tall to 8 feet tall. The city of Sioux Falls currently has a mask mandate. This mandate is set to expire March 13. “If the mask mandate is extended, we will require that all attendees wear masks,â€? Brod said. “If the mandate is not extended, masking will be encouraged but won’t be required. We will continue to ask that all exhibitors wear masks, if possible.â€? Brod encourages attendees to go online to preregister for the expo. “Preregistering will greatly streamline the check-in for attendees,â€? Brod

said. “There will be iPads placed at entry points that will be used for a fast and contactless check-in. Preregistration will make check-in a 30-second experience and will greatly reduce congestion.â€? All attendees should register online at least 30 days prior to the expo. To register, visit ww.centralplainsdairy. com/registration. A free mobile app is also available to help attendees keep track of events during the expo. The app can be found at www.centralplainsdairy.com/mobileapp. “The mobile app will send out push notiďƒžcations that will provide expo attendees with information about the industry-sponsored educational breakout sessions and other announcements,â€? Brod said. Capacity limits will be set for the breakout session rooms. The breakout session venues are also being expanded to make room for proper social distancing. The Wine and Cheese Social is slated to take place on the evening of Wednesday, March 24. The food and beverages will be prepackaged and will be served by Sanford Premier Center staff. All Sanford Premier Center staff members will undergo daily health screenings, including temperature checks. The staff will follow all COVID-19 safety protocols and will wear personal protective equipment. Sanford Premier Center staff will be constantly cleaning surfaces during the expo. A free pancake breakfast, which will be sponsored by Agropur, will be held the morning of Thursday, March 25. Touch-free coffee dispensers will be located throughout the venue. Contactless, card-only transaction concessions will also be available. “The safety of our expo attendees and exhibitors is paramount,â€? said Kristopher Bousquet, Central Plains Dairy Association president. “We are taking precautions and adhering to Denny Sanford Premier Center, ASM Global VenueShield Program and Centers for Disease Control (and Prevention) recommendations and checklists. We will do everything in our power to help you model the good behavior that we’re being told will keep you safe and feeling comfortable This year’s expo will provide attendees with a safe way to interact, in person, with dairy industry representatives and others in the industry.â€?

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Page 14 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

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Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 15

What projects have you completed this winter?

Bruce Heydmann Zumbrota, Minnesota Goodhue County 60 cows What farm projects have you completed because of the moderate weather this winter? I have been able to ďƒžx machinery, and make repairs to the silo unloader and barn cleaner. My son, Phil, works construction, so if he’s not working, he can help me. Having him help plus the mild winter helped me get a few things done. How does that compare to other years? This year has been wonderful. I have enjoyed it because it is so warm. There was a short time frame in October where it made me scared that winter was here to stay. It made me remember about the Halloween blizzard in 1991. I didn’t want to have that long of a winter again so it was good it warmed up going into November. Do you remember past winters similar to this one? A few winters ago, we had a short period in January where the temperatures were above normal. That was a nice break before it got bitterly cold again. In the early 80s, I remember a year where Phil was only a few years old and able to play outside because it was so nice, sunny and warm. Describe your perfect winter. I would like a winter that would never be below zero and have lots of sunshine along with minimal wind and snow. I don’t enjoy the snow because it makes for a lot of extra work. I don’t mind snow as long as it’s only a little bit and can cover the alfalfa. What are your favorite winter activities, both on and off the farm? I lead a pretty boring life so I don’t do much during the winter; however, not having as many projects to do in the winter allows me to spend more time with my grandkids. If it is warm enough, I like to cut trees and clean up the farm. Otherwise, I try to keep warm in the house or the farm ofďƒžce. What are your plans for your dairy in 2021? I plan to stay the same and not make too many changes. I will be freshening a bunch of heifers soon so I will be able to cull a few more cows. Tell us about your farm. I milk my herd in a tiestall barn. I also have 300 acres to raise corn, alfalfa and oats along with some pastureland. My wife, Cherie, and I have three grown children – Phil, Molly and Nikki – and ďƒžve grandchildren. I don’t have any employees. It’s just me and Phil when he’s able to help.

Alvin Bartz Shawano, Wisconsin Shawano County 100 cows What farm projects have you completed because of the moderate weather this winter? We have a fair amount of timber land, so we worked in the woods because there’s not much snow this winter. We did some logging years ago, and we’re still cleaning up. We like to keep our forest land clean. How does that compare to other years? When you have 30 degrees below zero all the time, you have to try to keep waterers and other things working in the cold. With the mild winter this year, it’s been really nice. Do you remember past winters similar to this one? No, I don’t remember one like this. So far, the coldest we’ve seen was 2 degrees on the morning of Jan. 20. I don’t think it’s been below zero yet this winter. Describe your perfect winter. The perfect winter would involve getting a snow cover early and not having it melt, followed by mild weather the rest of the winter. Our hay ďƒželds are pretty bare right now. They have no cover, and our winter wheat is sticking out too because it doesn’t have enough snow cover. What are your favorite winter activities, both on and off the farm? My wife, Nancy, and I enjoy going to all the high school sporting events for both boys and girls. We went to our grandchildren’s games, and although they’re now out of high school sports, we’re sportsmen, and we go no matter who’s playing. However, we couldn’t do that this year. Because of COVID-19, the schools are playing without crowds. Our family also deer hunts, and while my wife and I don’t snowmobile anymore, the rest of the family does. I’m also the town chairman – a position I’ve held for 46 years which takes up a fair amount of my time. What are your plans for your dairy in 2021? We try to raise and improve the genetics of our herd. We’ve also gone into raising a few more steers than we have in the past and are breeding our bottom-end cows to beef bulls to get a better value of steer. These are practices we will likely continue in 2021. Tell us about your farm. Our farm, Bartz’s Friendship Acres, has been in the family since 1877. Together, my son, Jim, and I milk 100 cows and farm about 400 acres of corn, soybean, alfalfa and winter wheat. We bought some farmland from farms on our road as they got out of farming and increased our acreage. We formed an LLC with our son and are preparing to transition the farm to the next generation. In addition, we used to do a lot of maple syrup but haven’t done that for many years. However, our grandkids tapped some trees last year for syrup and may continue with that project.

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Mark Gerard Spring Grove, Minnesota Houston County 250 cows What farm projects have you completed because of the moderate weather this winter? We were able to get our fall v-ripping done by the end of November. If it had been wet, we would not have been able to get it done. We were also able to empty both manure pits and other manure that needed to be hauled. The roads were good. We can’t haul when the roads are ice-packed. Now we won’t have to haul anything in the spring if we can’t get to it. How does that compare to other years? We have not been able to v-rip for the past three years because it was too wet and winter came too soon. A year or so ago, we also had a wet year and everything was done in the mud. This year has been perfect. Scraping manure in the freestall barn has been nice. It has not frozen and has been able to ďƒ&#x;ow into the pit. Usually we have to use a bucket and pile it until it gets warmer. Do you remember past winters similar to this one? There have been a few winters in the past that have had warm ups here and there, but this is the warmest start to winter I have experienced. It has been two months longer until we saw true winter weather. It has been great. Describe your perfect winter. This year so far comes pretty close to my perfect winter. I would like it to be 20 degrees and stay there. That is the perfect temperature. I don’t really care how much snow there is as long as the stalks got chopped and the manure has been hauled before it ďƒ&#x;ies. What are your favorite winter activities, both on and off the farm? I don’t do much anymore. I used to snowmobile and pushing snow. Now that I’m getting closer to retirement, I like to watch John Wayne movies, check the markets and watch auctions of RFD-TV. What are your plans for your dairy in 2021? We don’t plan to grow right now. Every animal has a bed so we are working to get better not bigger; however, we are waiting for 40-degree weather to build a 36- by 150-foot coverall-building to house machinery. Tell us about your farm. My wife, Dianne, and I farm together with our daughter and her partner, Darci Cleven and Steve Soland. We will soon start the process to transition the farm to them. I have been dairy farming since 1977. We milk our cows in a double-9 parlor. Our farm is 40 acres, and we rent the rest of the land. My brothers, Tom and Jeff, custom raise our calves – heifers and bulls that we feed out as steers – along with taking care of our dry cows.


Page 16 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

ConƟnued from OUR SIDE | Page 15

Carter Bork Beaver Creek, Minnesota Rock County 120 cows What farm projects have you completed because of the moderate weather this winter? We were able to get quite a bit of corn stalks baled and have hauled a lot of manure. We got a lot of extra yard work accomplished. We haven’t had to do nearly as much bedding. How does that compare to other years? This year has been a dream. It’s a 180-degree turnaround from last year. Our yards aren’t wet and muddy. It’s a lot easier to sort animals when you aren’t wading through 2 feet of muck. The dry fall enabled us to harvest better quality silage and put it up right. Do you remember past winters similar to this one? The winter of 2008 was somewhat similar. As I recall, it was a fairly mild winter. Describe your perfect winter. This winter is pretty much my ideal. We have been able to get a lot more done than we ever could have hoped for. What are your favorite winter activities, both on and off the farm? One of my favorite winter activities is going coon hunting at night. It’s also fun to ride around on an inner tube that’s being pulled across the snow by an ATV. My favorite off farm wintertime activity is ice shing. I have been able to get away and go ice shing a couple of times this winter. I usually catch mostly crappies but have also caught a few Northerns. One recent weekend, I managed to land a 34-inch Northern. That was a nice sh. What are your plans for your dairy in 2021? We plan to keep on doing the best we can with what we have. This includes making sure every animal is healthy and has plenty of high quality of feed in front of them. Tell us about your farm. This is very much a family operation. I farm with my uncle, Barry, my cousins, Tate and Tyson, my aunts, Kara and Tami, and my grandpa, Harley. We milk in a tiestall barn that was built in 1996. We have made a lot of improvements to the barn since it was built, including updating its feeding system. In addition to the dairy, we feed a few hundred head of beef cattle and nish 2,400 hogs. We also lamb 150 ewes each year and fatten out the lambs. We raise all of our own replacement animals. We have been using sexed semen for a while now, so our herd has pretty good genetics.

Tony Schumacher Rubicon, Wisconsin Dodge County 55 cows What farm projects have you completed because of the moderate weather this winter? Cleaning and lining fences. I’ve been cutting down trees, clearing back brush and trimming tree lines. I haven’t really worked in the shop too much this winter due to the lack of snow and milder weather we’ve had. Instead, I’m doing more things outside. How does that compare to other years? This winter is a lot nicer and milder. Waterers are not freezing, and feed is not freezing to the sides of the silos. Everything works nicer when it’s warmer. I function better as well. We’ve had a couple cold nights but no cold snaps this year that stuck around. It’s been tolerable, and we haven’t seen that in recent years. Do you remember past winters similar to this one? The last mild winter I remember was in 2012. In February that year, it got up to 70 degrees. Describe your perfect winter. Sunny and 70 degrees with a margarita in one hand and the beach nearby. My perfect winter is not here, but this winter has not been bad. I can’t complain. What are your favorite winter activities, both on and off the farm? I sure do like the cows and enjoy milking. I also like to get together with a group of people and go four-wheeling. There usually isn’t much going on in the winter. It’s pretty quiet around here. What are your plans for your dairy in 2021? To hopefully still be farming. My plans are basically the same as last year – no drastic changes in sight. I’m not expanding or anything and plan to follow the same pace as 2020. If I have the opportunity to take on more land, I will, but I don’t know of any right now. Tell us about your farm. I am a fourth-generation farmer who grew up on the farm and never left. My dad passed away from cancer in 2000 when I was in high school so I started managing the farm with my mom. In 2011, I purchased the farm from her. Today, I milk around 55 Holsteins and run 350 acres of land. Most of it is used for feed, but I also sell a little extra. I raise all my heifer calves but do not keep any bull calves. In 2015, I hosted the Dodge County Dairy Brunch.

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Nathan Kling Taylor, Wisconsin Jackson County 510 cows What farm projects have you completed because of the moderate weather this winter? We got the nishing touches done on a freestall barn that collapsed in February 2019 from the excess snow load. Also were able to nish some waterway projects in late November due to the nice weather. We have begun to do the winter service on the eld equipment in the heated shop also. How does that compare to other years? Every winter is different, and we have different projects to nish. The much above average temps this year sure make it more enjoyable and easier to get the tasks done. Do you remember past winters similar to this one? Every year is a bit different, but I like the mild winters with less snow as it makes the chores easier and allows time for other activities. Describe your perfect winter. This winter has been pretty enjoyable. It would be 30 degrees and sunny days and 20 degree nights with a light blanket of snow. I can live without pushing snow out of the way like 2019. What are your favorite winter activities, both on and off the farm? I’m not a big winter outdoors person as I work out there all day, but we like to take the kids snow tubing. We have a snowmobile for the kids to ride around the farm and pull sleds behind. We like to have big bonres and have family over and ride snowmobile and go sledding. What are your plans for your dairy in 2021? No big plans at this time. We’ve had a couple years of major projects after purchasing the second farm. A normal year is in order for 2021. Tell us about your farm. I farm with my wife, Karen, and three kids. Our home farm was purchased by my grandparents in 1960, and I bought it from them in 2001. We farm some land that my ancestors homesteaded in 1855, and I am the sixth generation to farm this land. We have two dairy farms. One is a 260-cow organic dairy that we rotationally graze. The second farm we purchased in 2018 is a 250-cow conventional dairy milked with Lely robots.

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Monica Paul Stratford, Wisconsin Marathon County 105 cows, 89 milking What farm projects have you completed because of the moderate weather this winter? We have been cutting rewood and working on projects in the shop. How does that compare to other years? It is pretty similar. There is always something going on, regardless of the weather. Do you remember past winters similar to this one? In 2013 when we built our milking parlor, that was a moderate winter as well. Describe your perfect winter. The perfect winter is when we do not have to worry about plowing snow as often. Having a moderate winter is a prime example of that. What are your favorite winter activities, both on and off the farm? We like to cut and split wood in the winter. Otherwise we enjoy taking it a little easy. What are your plans for your dairy in 2021? We are working on plans for a new barn and manure pit. Tell us about your farm. Our farm, Paul Dairy, is a fourth-generation dairy farm. We crop 380 acres with mainly corn and hay. The cows are about 80% Holstein and 20% Brown Swiss and crossbreds. We milk in a double-6 herringbone parlor and the milking cows are housed in a sand-bedded freestall.

We also raise all of our youngstock for both farms. We crop 1,650 acres of organic crops including pasture, alfalfa/ grass hay, corn, oat, rye and soybean. We also do some custom chopping, baling and wrapping for a few neighbors. We could not accomplish all of this without a great team of employees that work with us on a daily basis as we strive to improve the comfort of the animals, quality of the land and crops, and ultimately the lifestyles of those involved with our operation.

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A SYSTEM APPROACH • Contributes to Improved Farm Profitability

Dura Chain Scraper Vertical Pump Prop Agitator Hammermills

Find this cow!

2 of 24

Instead of compressing feed, OptiDuo™ remixes it - making it much more appetizing for cows. Ideal for farms operating a once-per-day feeding frequency.

DeLaval calf coats keep newborn calves housed in cold climates warm. Calf coats promote healthy growth and ensure future performance.

for your chance to win a $ 100 Gift CertiÄcate or Farm Systems Apparel!

**One entry per customer** • Winner will be notiÄed Cow must be identical to cow on this form (size may vary).

Q. On which product is the cow located?

• Contributes to More Milk per Labor Hour • Contributes to Healthier Cows Contributes to Highest Milk Quality

A.

Name: Phone: Address:

Drop oɈ/mail/email your entries to: 58 Interstate Drive N.W. Melrose, MN 56352 or hand oќ to your service tech DAIRY ST R melrose.farmsystems1@gmail.com

Let us know you saw our ad in the Dairy Star! Proudly serving you from Brookings, SD; St. Peter, MN; and Melrose, MN. 58 Interstate Drive N.W., Melrose, MN 56352 | 800-636-5581


Page 18 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

Breeding Focus

Kolbs breed for high-producing, long-life cows Kolb Dairy Inc. Michael and Theresa Kolb Paynesville, Minnesota Stearns County 450 cows Describe your facilities and list your breeding management team. We have freestall barns with manure solids bedding and a double-12 parlor. Our breeding team consists of our A.I. technician Danilo and Theresa. Alta Genetics provides most of the semen and mating services. What is your reproduction program? Do you use a synchronization program? How do you get animals pregnant? For the cows, we use a synchronization program. We use tail paint to help with heat detection. The cows are bred the rst service with genomic sires. Second and third service they are bred to beef sires. Cows that are not conrmed pregnant after third service are evaluated for production and somatic cell count. If acceptable, we will use a CIDR on them, otherwise they will go on a do-not-breed list. Heifers are bred rst service with sexed semen. For the second and third service, we use beef semen. Heifers not pregnant after the third service are culled. Heifers are bred mostly on natural heats. We also use tail paint on them.

DANNA SABOLIK/DAIRY STAR

Michael and Theresa Kolb, pictured with Danilo, the farm’s AI technician, breed for longevity and high producƟon on their 450-cow dairy near Paynesville, Minnesota.

Turn to KOLBS | Page 20

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Demco 550 .............................................$9,500 Demco 365 .................................. $4,000-5,500 Brent 644, red & black ............................$9,500 Many Used Gravity Boxes - Demco, J&M, Brent

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Brillion PT 10 12’ packer ...................... $7,000 CIH 5300 grain drill w/grass .............. $10,900 Midsota 5510 & F610 rock trailers .... In Stock Midsota F8216 rock trailer ........................ Call New Red Devil & Agro Trend Snowblowers

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Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 19

Consistency & Speed TridentPulsation™ ensure each liner is consistently attached to the teat followed by a brief stimulation phase. Get the unit on right and the cows will milk fast – no other milking system provides this level of performance.

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LUCK-E HOLSTEINS, The Engel Family, HAMPSHIRE, IL Milking 185 Holsteins, Bred over 400 EX RHA 25,464M 4.5F 1151 3.3P 829, SCC 160,000 2020 State Show Premier Breeder and Exhibitor, including winners in the group of recently fresh 2-year-old King Doc daughters (above). Two are VG88 full sisters to Luck-E Dr Antidote RC EX90 54H902 “Udder Comfort™ does an awesome job softening udders and is gentle to skin. Results set it apart from everything else. For silky udders that are ready fast, we use Udder Comfort on every fresh cow 2x/day for a week after calving. We also apply it prefresh for first-calf heifers, and get it between the leg and the udder to prevent irritation,” says Joe Engel, Luck-E Holsteins, Hampshire, Ill. The Engels have bred over 400 EX cows, including impact cows Asia, Atlanta, Kandie-Red, and a string of impact sires, including Red and Polled. Joe and Matt and parents Dennis and Beth milk 185 Holsteins. They focus on balanced cows from consistent families, wide from muzzle to pins, efficient and long-lasting in a freestall setup where good udders and high components rule. “We like to be proactive. It’s good for cows and milk quality. Since Udder Comfort came out, it’s the only one we use. We want fresh, crisp, perfect udders by 10 days to 3 weeks fresh. Over and over, Udder Comfort delivers. It gets udders spot-on, all the way ready, fast.” https://wp.me/pb1wH7-e6

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Page 20 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

Tax break available for beginning farmers

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s (MDA) Rural Finance Authority is now accepting applications for a tax credit for the sale or lease of land, equipment, machinery, and livestock in Minnesota by beginning farmers. To qualify, the applicant must be a Minnesota resident with the desire to start farming or who began farming in Minnesota within the past ten years, provide positive projected earnings statements, have a net worth less than $851,000, and enroll in, or have completed an approved nancial management program. The farmer cannot be directly related by blood or marriage to the person from whom he or she is buying or renting assets. The farmer must provide the majority of the labor and management of the farm. The tax credit for the sale or lease of assets can then be applied to the Minnesota income taxes of the owner of the agricultural land or other assets. Three levels of credits are available: – 5% of the lesser of the sale price or fair market value of the agricultural asset up to a maximum of $32,000 – 10% of the gross rental income of each of the rst, second and third years of a rental agreement, up to a maximum of $7,000 per year – 15% of the cash equivalent of the gross rental income in each of the rst, second or third year of a share rent agreement, up to a maximum of $10,000 per year The Beginning Farmer Tax Credit is available on a rst-come, rst-served basis. Applications must be received by October 1, 2021. Interested farmers should note that they can also apply for a separate tax credit to offset the cost of a nancial management program up to a maximum of $1,500 per year – for up to three years.

ConƟnued from KOLBS | Page 18 Describe your breeding philosophy. To breed healthy, high-producing, long-life cows for our dairy. What guidelines do you follow to reach the goals for your breeding program? We have a 75-day waiting period before rst service. All of our cows are enrolled into a double ovsynch program. Cows are tail painted for heat detection and pregnancy tested at 30 days. What are the top traits you look for in breeding your dairy herd, and how has this changed since you started farming? The top traits looked for in our herd are: high component and milk production, good feet and legs, and good udders. What are certain traits you try to avoid? The traits we avoid are poor teat placement, week and narrow frame, and poor feet and legs. Describe the ideal cow for your herd. The ideal cow in our herd would have a strong frame, good feet and legs, good natured, have high milk production and a low SCC. What role does genetics have in reaching the goals of your farm? Genetics have helped us reach our goals by helping us to breed for better cows by improving traits. What percentage of your herd is bred to sexed, conventional and beef semen? We only use sexed semen on heifers for the rst service and conventional semen for the rst service on cows. After that, it is all beef semen. What is your conception rate? How does this differ with different types of semen? Our conception rate is 56%. For conventional semen, it is 55% on the cows, 56% with beef semen on cows, 66% sexed semen on heifers and 60% beef semen on heifers. What is the greatest lesson you have learned through your breeding program? Since we switched from a modied live vaccine to a killed vaccine, we

DANNA SABOLIK/DAIRY STAR

These cows are an example of what the Kolbs breed for on their farm. A priority when choosing semen is strong feet and legs, as well as high components and milk producƟon, and good udders. have experienced a much higher conception rate. Good nutrition, especially in the dry period, and cow comfort also play big roles in getting cows pregnant. What is the age of your heifers at rst service? 1213 months. How does your heifer inventory affect your breeding program? We use beef semen to help control our heifer inventory. Tell us about your farm. Kolb Dairy Inc. is a familyowned dairy and crop farm. Theresa helps manage the cows. We milk around 430 cows and have run about 2,000 acres of cropland. We grow corn, soybeans, small grain and alfalfa. We have ve full-time employees who help with the day-to-day duties.


Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 21

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DISKS JD 235, 21 ft, 3-Section Folding, 9” Spacing, #178330.......................................$8,900 Wishek 862-NT, 2009, 33 ft, 3-Section Folding, #163465............................ $21,900 JD 2620, 2016, 26 ft, 3-Section Folding, 9” Spacing, #175512....................... $34,500 JD 637, 2011, 45 ft, 5-Section Folding, 9” spacing, #166177.......................... $34,900 JD 637, 2011, 42 ft, 5-Section Folding, 9” spacing, #178105.......................... $35,000 Sunflower 1550-50, 49 ft, 5-Section Folding, #172168 ............................. $38,400 JD 637, 2008, 45 ft, 5-Section Folding, 9” spacing, #176993..............................40400 JD 2680H, 2019, 42 ft, 3-Section Folding, #176202....................................... $99,500 FIELD CULTIVATORS JD 960, 1990, 32 ft, 3-Section Folding, C-Shank, #174317 ...............................$4,400 JD 960, 1989, 42 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #165959 ...............................$6,900 Case IH 4300, 45.5 ft, 3-Section Folding, C-Shank, #176927 ...................... $10,400 JD 980, 1996, 44 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #169542 ................................13900 Elmers 6400, 1991, 41 ft, 3-Section Folding, S-Tine, #178092 .................... $14,900 Sunflower 5035, 2016, 24 ft, 3-Section Folding, C-Shank, #177191............................................................................................... $28,900 JD 2210, 2005, 54 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #167743 .......................... $30,900 Wil-Rich QX-2, 2008, 47 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #173990 .............. $32,900 JD 2210, 2010, 45.5 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #178291....................... $33,400 JD 2210, 2012, 32 ft, 3-Section Folding, C-Shank, #173629 .......................... $35,900 JD 2210LL, 2014, 45.5 ft, 3-Section Folding, C-Shank, #173708 .................. $39,000 JD 2210, 2012, 45.5 ft, 3-Section Folding, C-Shank, #178521....................... $41,900 Case IH 200, 2011, 50 ft., 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #178082 ................. $43,500 JD 2210, 2009, 55.5 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #175257....................... $45,000 Case IH 200, 2014, 60 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #176029 .................. $47,500 Case IH 200, 2012, 55 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #178072 .................. $47,900 JD 2210, 2011, 60 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #168037 .......................... $49,400 JD 2230, 2018, 50.5 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #176637....................... $94,900 JD 2230FH, 2019, 44 ft, 5-Section Folding, C-Shank, #177180 .................... $97,900 PLANTERS White 6106, 1992, 6R30” in 1.6 Bushel hopper, #174852...............................$8,400 JD 7200, 1988, 12R30” , Wing Fold, 1.6 Bushel hopper, #176943 .....................$9,500 JD 1750, 1997, 6R30”, rigid frame, 1.6 Bushel hopper, #176829................... $13,900 JD 1750, 2000, 6R30”, rigid frame, 3.0 Bushel hopper, #176783 ................... $16,900 JD 1770, 2002, 16R30”, Flex Fold, 3.0 Bushel hopper, #174750 .................... $25,500 Wil-Rich PT2200, 2005, 24R22”, Wing Fold, 3.0 Bushel Hopper, #177551 . $39,900 JD DB60, 2013, 24R30”, Flex Fold, Central Fill System, #178238 ..................$122,900 JD 1775NT, 2016, 16R30”, Flex Fold, Central Fill System, Row Command, #177616 .................................................................................$124,900

2 JD 1775NT, 2019, 16R30”, Flex Fold, Central Fill System, Row Command, Electric Drive, #174754......................................................................................$149,500 14 JD DB66, 2012, 36R22”, Flex Fold, Central Fill System, Row Command, #166296.............................................................................................................$189,500 16 JD DB66, 2017, 36R22”, Wing Fold, Exact Emerge, Central Fill System, Row Command, Electric Drive, #175194 ..........................................................$349,500 ROW CROP TRACTORS 5 International 1066, Cab, 2WD, Syncro, 540/1000 pto, Duals, 7911 hrs., #176992 ............................................................................................. $13,500 11 JD 4840, 1979, Cab, 2WD, PS, 1000 pto, Duals, 8000 hrs., #177919.............. $26,400 10 JD 4450, 1983, Cab, MFWD, PS 540/1000 pto, Duals, 15500 hrs., #177261 . $35,900 14 JD 8300, 1995, Cab, MFWD, PS, 1000 pto, Duals, 10129 hrs., #158662 ........ $49,500 15 JD 6155R, 2018, Cab, MFWD, PS, 540/1000 pto, Singles, 383 hrs., #147651 .$129,500 4 JD 6155M/ 640R Loader, 2019, Cab, MFWD, Partial PS, 540/1000 pto, Singles, 254 hrs., #153304................................................................................$134,900 17 JD 6155R, 2019, Cab, MFWD, Partial PS, 540/1000 pto, Singles, 123 hrs., #159734............................................................................................................$134,900 9 JD 6145R, 2019, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, PS, 540/1000 pto, Singles, 289 hrs., #153237 .............................................................................................$137,900 4 JD 6175M, 2019, Cab, MFWD, Partial PS, 540/1000 pto, Singles, Loader, 260 hrs., #160856 .............................................................................................$142,900 6 JD 6210R, 2012, Cab, MFWD, IVT, 540/1000 pto, Duals, 493 hrs., #178040 .$142,900 3 JD 8360R, 2012, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 4450 hrs., #177867.............................................................................................$152,000 8 JD 7210R, 2018, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 540/1000 pto, Duals, 2019 hrs., #172425 ...........................................................................................$168,900 5 JD 8245R, 2017, Cab, MFWD, PS 540/1000 pto, Duals, 939 hrs., #176600 .$179,500 4 JD 7210R, 2019, Cab, MFWD, 540/1000 pto, Duals, Loader, 416 hrs., #177177 .............................................................................................$195,000 1 JD 7210R, 2020, Cab, MFWD, IVT, 540/1000 pto, Duals, 300 hrs., #176074$199,500 6 JD 8245R, 2017, Cab, MFWD, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 1267 hrs., #176592 .....$201,400 2 JD 8295R, 2015, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 1465 hrs., #172975.............................................................................................................$209,500 16 JD 8245R, 2019, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 1362 hrs., #169246.............................................................................................................$218,500 16 JD 8245R, 2019, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 1344 hrs., #169248.............................................................................................................$218,550 1 JD 8245R, 2020, Cab, MFWD, PS, 540/1000 pto, Duals, 300 hrs., #176076$224,900 1 JD 8245R, 2020, Cab, MFWD, PS, 540/1000 pto, Duals, 300 hrs., #176075$224,900 8 JD 8270R, 2020, Cab, MFWD, PS, 540/1000 pto, Duals, 475 hrs., #175590$229,000

Visit one of our 17 locations in Central Minnesota! (1) = GLENCOE 4561 Hwy. 212

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78412 Co. Rd. 20

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16 JD 8245R, 2019, Cab, MFWD, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 880 hrs.,#169247 ..........$230,150 1 JD 8270R, 2020, Cab, MFWD, PS, 1000 pto, Duals, 300 hrs., #176082 ........$237,900 4 JD 8270R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, PS, 540/1000, Duals, 700 hrs., #175591 .............................................................................................$239,000 17 JD 8245R, 2019, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 592 hrs., #171965 ..............................................................................................$239,500 1 JD 8245R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 3 00 hrs., #176079 ................................................................................................$252,900 1 JD 8245R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 296 hrs., #176077 ................................................................................................$252,900 1 JD 8245R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 300 hrs., #176078 .............................................................................................$252,900 6 JD 8295R, 2019, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 630 hrs., #172428 .............................................................................................$265,400 17 JD 8270R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 316 hrs., #176084 .............................................................................................$267,900 4 JD 8320R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 650 hrs., #175589 .............................................................................................$285,900 4 JD 8320R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, 500 hrs., #175588 .............................................................................................$289,500 15 JD 8320R, 2019, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 632 hrs., #171962 ..................................................................................$289,500 10 JD 8320R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT,1000 pto, Duals, 300 hrs., #176086 .............................................................................................$298,500 1 JD 8320R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 297 hrs., #176087 .............................................................................................$298,500 1 JD 8320R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 298 hrs., #176088 .............................................................................................$298,500 1 JD 8320R, 2020, Cab, MFWD, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 300 hrs., #176380 .......$298,500 6 JD 7310R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 540/1000 pto, Singles, Front Hitch, Front PTO, 50K Transmission, 385 hrs., #178287 ............$299,500 1 JD 8320R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 300 hrs., #176085 ................................................................................................$301,900 1 JD 8345R, 2020, Cab, MFWD w/Suspension, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 313 hrs., #176094 ..............................................................................................$314,900 1 JD 8345R, 2020, Cab, MFWD, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 296 hrs., #176092 .........$314,900 3 JD 8345R, 2020, Cab, MFWD, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 298 hrs., #176093 .........$314,900 1 JD 8345R, 2020, Cab, MFWD, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 308 hrs., #176101 .........$318,900 1 JD 8345R, 2020, Cab, MFWD, IVT, 1000 pto, Duals, 413 hrs., #176098 .........$318,900

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(10) = LITTLE FALLS (13) = BAXTER (11) = WADENA 62505 US Hwy. 10

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(14) = ELBOW LAKE

(16) = BENSON

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SEE OUR COMPLETE INVENTORY WITH PICTURES AND DESCRIPTIONS AT: www.mmcjd.com


Page 22 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

Growing a strong voice for dairy

Start planning for tomorrow, today. 0

Penterman to lead Dairy Business Association as president By Danielle Nauman danielle.n@dairystar.com

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Joe’s Refrigeration Inc. Withee, WI 715-229-2321 Mlsna Dairy Supply Inc. Cashton, WI 608-654-5106 Professional Dairy Services Arlington, WI 608-635-0267 Redeker Dairy Equipment Brandon, WI 920-346-5579 The Scharine Group Inc. Whitewater, WI 800 472-2880 Mt Horeb, WI 800-872-3470

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THORP, Wis. – Amy Penterman, of Thorp, has been selected to serve as the president of the Dairy Business Association during the group’s recent annual meeting. She will be the rst woman to take the helm of the dairy advocacy group. Peterman, along with her husband, Sander, and their ve children, operate Dutch Dairy. The dairy is home to 850 cows producing a 32,000-pound herd average with a 4.1% butterfat and 3.2% protein test. The herd is milked in a double-12 parallel parlor. Heifers are raised until nine months of age and sent to a heifer raiser until about two months prior to calving. The farm consists of 1,350 acres on which they grow corn, grass haylage, soybean and wheat. Penterman also works from home as a crop insurance agent. “I’m honored to serve in this role going forward,” Penterman said. “Dairy is the backbone of our state’s economy and rural communities, and I am passionate about keeping it strong now and for future generations.” Penterman is not new to DBA. Dutch Dairy has held a membership in the organization for over 15 years, and Penterman has served on the board of directors since 2017. She was named president-elect in 2019 and has served as secretary. “I have worked in the agricultural community my entire adult career and have always known the reputation that DBA has in ghting for dairy in our state,” Penterman said of her decision to serve on the board of directors. “I had reached a point in my career and on our farm that I wanted to get more involved in giving back and helping the dairy community. A leadership position gives me a louder voice for farmers, who are working hard on their dairies every day producing world class food.” Penterman sees the DBA as more than just an organization, but as a valuable resource for all Wisconsin dairy farmers. “The association is an energetic group of hardworking, forward-thinking staff and, most importantly, passionate farmers and dairy businesses who want to see Wisconsin dairy farms not only survive but thrive,” Penterman said. “We’re inclusive, with farms of all sizes and business models, alongside corporate members. This diversity is unique, and it makes us stronger.” According to Penterman, policymaking is at the core of DBA. She said the group works to ensure lawmakers understand the issues that are important to dairy farmers and to ensure that regulations put in place are fair and sensible. “In one word, ght is what DBA does for Wisconsin dairy farmers,” Penterman said. “Whether it is Turn to PENTERMAN | Page 23

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Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 23

ConƟnued from PENTERMAN | Page 22 at the town level or in Madison, DBA stands up for farmers every time; farmers need a voice that decision-makers hear. The association not only speaks on the behalf of the dairy community, we empower farmers to make themselves heard. We want them to be part of the policy making process; to ensure that lawmakers understand what is important. DBA is also connecting dairy to our communities, driving innovation in conservation and being there for individual farmers when they might need us.” In addition to the policy-making expertise, DBA has developed a variety of other resources for their members such as social media expertise, public relations and sustainability strategies. “It is critical that Wisconsin remains a welcoming place for dairy farmers and processors to create the cheese and other products that have branded the state as America’s Dairyland,” Penterman said. “That means investments in research, for example, through the Dairy Innovation Hub, and in the innovative approaches farmers are taking to improve water quality and care for the land are so important.” Penterman referred to DBA’s new clean water initiative, in which they have partnered with environmental organizations, to help ensure farmers play a key role in environmental regulations and nding science-based solutions. The scrutiny dairy farmers face each day concerns Penterman. Now, more than ever, she sees the need for dairy farmers to be proactive in connecting with the consuming public. “It has been said many times before, but it’s so important to tell our

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Amy Penterman was recently named president of Dairy Business AssociaƟon. Penterman operates Dutch Dairy with her husband, Sander, milking 850 head near Thorp, Wisconsin. story,” Penterman said. “A quote from a speaker at DBA’s Dairy Strong conference sticks with me: ‘It’s hard to hate someone if you have had a grilled cheese sandwich with them.’ As farmers, we need to put a face with the jug of milk, block of cheese and pail of ice cream.” In her mind, it is no longer just enough for farmers to do their jobs re-

sponsibly, growing and raising food that is safe and healthy. She urges farmers to take the opportunity to connect with the consumer to ensure them of the ethical care that goes into food production. She feels that membership and participating in leadership roles in a group such as DBA helps farmers grow and develop that voice. “I have always been willing to step

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Deadlines for multiple programs are pending

Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 25

By Steve Frericks

County Executive Director Douglas County FSA Office

United States Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced the U.S. Department of Agriculture will provide additional assistance through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program, expanding eligibility for some agricultural producers and commodities as well as updating payments to accurately compensate some producers who already applied for the program. Producers who are now eligible and those who need to modify existing applications due to these updates can contact the USDA Farm Service Agency between Jan. 19 and Feb. 26. Some of these changes are being made to align with the recently enacted Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 while others are discretionary changes being made in response to ongoing evaluation of CFAP. “The COVID-19 pandemic has left a deep impact on the farm economy, and we are utilizing the tools and monies available to ease some of the nancial burdens on American producers to ensure our agricultural economy remains strong, independent and a global leader in production,” Perdue said. “As part of implementing CFAP 1 and CFAP 2, we identied new areas of support, and Congress recently directed us to provide additional relief. This additional assistance builds on to the $23.6 billion in assistance already provided to our farmers and ranchers impacted by the pandemic, and we will continue to implement other provisions enacted by Congress.” Contract producers of swine, broilers, laying hens, chicken eggs and turkeys who suffered a drop in revenue in

2020 as compared to their 2019 revenue because of the pandemic are eligible for assistance. Producers could receive up to 80% of their revenue loss, subject to the availability of funds. Producers of pullets and turfgrass sod also now are eligible for CFAP payments. The commodities were not explicitly included in the initial CFAP 2 rule. Payments are based on eligible sales, and the payment calculation in the updated rule includes crop insurance indemnities, Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program, and Wildre and Hurricane Indemnity Program – Plus payments. Similarly, FSA adjusted the payment calculation to use the producer’s eligible 2019 calendar year sales, and 2019 crop insurance indemnities, NAP and WHIP+ payments, multiplied by the applicable payment rate for all sales commodities, which include specialty crops, aquaculture, tobacco, specialty livestock, nursery crops and oriculture, for CFAP 2. Producers who applied during the sign-up period that closed Dec. 11, 2020, can modify an existing CFAP 2 application between Jan. 19 and Feb. 26. Additionally, FSA adjusted the payment calculation for certain row crops for CFAP 2, specically those for which a producer had crop insurance coverage but not an available 2020 Actual Production History approved yield. FSA is now using 100% of the 2019 Agriculture Risk CoverageCounty Option benchmark yield to calculate payments when an APH is not available rather than 85%, which was in the original CFAP 2 calculations. This calculation change is only for producers with crop insurance coverage who grow barley, corn, sorghum, soybean,

sunower, upland cotton and wheat. Producers who CRP General Signup Offer Deadline 2/12/2021 applied during the sign- CFAP 2 Expanded Eligibility Deadline 2/26/2021 up period that closed Dec. Quality Loss Assistance Program Deadline 11, 2020, can modify an 3/5/2021 existing CFAP 2 application 2021 ARCPLC Program Elec�on Deadline between Jan. 19 and Feb. 3/15/2021 26.

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These deadlines are fast approaching. CFAP 1 top-up payments for swine FSA is providing an additional CFAP 1 inventory payment for swine to help producers who face head. Newly eligible producers who continuing market disruptions from need to submit a CFAP 2 application changes in U.S. meat consumption due to the pandemic. Swine producers with or producers who need to modify an approved CFAP 1 applications will soon existing one can do so between Jan. 19 automatically receive a top-up payment and Feb. 26 by contacting their local of $17 per head increasing the total Turn to FSA | Page 26 CFAP1 inventory payment to $34 per

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ConƟnued from FSA | Page 25 USDA Service Center. New applicants can also obtain one-on-one support with applications by calling 877508-8364. In addition to the changes being made to CFAP, per language in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, FSA will extend 2020 Marketing Assistance Loans to provide additional exibilities for farmers. FSA is also preparing to move forward on implementation of the remaining provisions of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021. To learn more about this additional assistance, visit farmers.gov/cfap. Enrollment begins for Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage programs Agricultural producers can now make elections and enroll in the Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage programs for the 2021 crop year. These key USDA safety-net programs help producers weather uctuations in either revenue or price for certain crops, and more than $5 billion in payments are in the process of going out to producers who signed up for the 2019 crop year. Enrollment for the 2021 crop year closes March 15. ARC provides income support payments on historical base acres when actual crop revenue declines below a specied guaranteed level. PLC provides income support payments on historical base acres when the effective price for a covered commodity falls below its reference price. Covered commodities include barley, canola, large and small chickpea, corn, crambe, axseed, grain sorghum, lentil, mustard seed, oat, peanut, dry pea, rapeseed, long grain rice, medium and short grain rice, safower seed, seed cotton, sesame, soybean, sunower seed and wheat. 2021 elections, enrollment Producers can elect coverage and enroll in crop-bycrop ARC-County or PLC, or ARC-Individual for the entire farm, for the 2021 crop year. Although election changes for 2021 are optional, enrollment (signed contract) is required for each year of the program. If a producer has a multi-year contract on the farm and makes an election change for 2021, it will be necessary to sign a new contract. If an election is not submitted by the deadline of March 15, the election defaults to the current election for crops on the farm from the prior crop year. For crop years 2022 and 2023, producers will have an opportunity to make new elections during those signups. Farm owners cannot enroll in either program unless they have a share interest in the farm. In partnership with USDA, the University of Illinois and Texas A&M University offer web-based decision tools to assist producers in making informed, educated decisions using crop data specic to their respective farming operations. Tools include: – Gardner-farmdoc Payment Calculator: The University of Illinois tool that offers farmers the ability to run payment estimate modeling for their farms and counties for ARC-County and PLC. – ARC and PLC Decision Tool, the Texas A&M tool, allows producers to analyze payment yield updates and expected payments for 2021. Producers who have used the tool in the past should see their username and much of their farm data already available in the system. - For more information on ARC and PLC, including two online decision tools that assist producers in making enrollment and election decisions specic to their operations, visit the ARC and PLC webpage. For additional questions and assistance, contact your local USDA service center. To locate your FSA ofce, visit farmers.gov/service-locator.

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A winter getaway As the calendar year ips from one year to the next, we are gathering information to have our taxes prepared. All year long, we work with Compeer Financial, a cooperative that has our farm loans and our accounting. We send our receipts and payroll into them monthly, and they help us keep on track to pay down money on loans and to be ready for tax time. Along with Compeer, we use H&R Block to help with tax preparation. I do have some family and friends who do their own bookkeeping and taxes, but that is too much for me to handle. I leave it up to the professionals. Doing By Tina Hinchley is one thing, but I Farmer & Columnist payroll am not going to risk preparing the W-2s and 1099s. I don’t want to have mistakes, and this is something I want done by someone who knows the deadlines and the tax laws. With COVID-19, all communication between the accountant and tax preparation has been through email. Back in December, they reached out to us to get all the information they need and let us know how we are standing nancially before the end of the year. On a good year, we are able to prepay for inputs and purchase the feed, seed and fertilizers ahead of time, and purchase crop insurance for the upcoming year. Duane, my husband, has meetings at our kitchen table with our crop insurance man. Figuring out crop coverage changes every year depending on the prices of the crops at the time. Thank goodness Duane takes care of all of the plans and purchases what we need. The meeting with our agronomist from United Cooperative is to gure out what we are going to plant where and what kind of fertilizers are needed based on our nutrient management plan. With Dekalb and Cropland seeds, there are award incentives when purchasing. I know we are paying for these awards, but there is only so much wiggle room when wheeling and dealing with costs and inputs. So, we always look forward to what kind of awards we might earn. The awards can be anything from products that

We BUY, SELL, TRADE used dairy equipment and milk tanks

Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 27

help us on the farm, laptops to leaf blowers or vacations. We usually take the vacation to get away from the farm for four nights or even a week in a condo. The destinations are throughout the United States and often exotic. We have been able to go to Hawaii, Costa Rica and even Antigua. Sometimes if there is a meeting at the destination, the ight costs are included. Last year, we were to use our award from 2019, but COVID-19 changed all that. The dates of the trips were extended but need to be used by y Feb. 28. A s deadIk know we are paying i ffor the line is apthese awards, but there is p r o a c h I am only so much wiggle room ing, trying when wheeling and dealing to gure out what with costs and inputs. p do. tto

Do we go off the farm, travel and possibly get COVID-19? We have been happy about staying home to avoid any contact with others, but do I let this opportunity expire? It would be nice to go someplace warm, and there are a lot of places on the gulf coast and out west we would like to visit. San Diego, San Antonio, New Orleans or Florida are some options to escape from the cold on the farm just to sit in the sun and warm up for a few days. As we looked at the options and tried to decide, Duane asked Google, “How much does it cost to y from Madison, Wisconsin, to San Diego, California.” Google replied, “Flight costs from Madison, Wisconsin, to San Diego, California, start at $89.” That was our answer. Tina Hinchley, and her husband, Duane, daughter Anna, milk 240 registered Holsteins with robots. They also farm 2300 acres of crops near Cambridge, Wisconsin. The Hinchley’s have been hosting farm tour for over 25 years.

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Page 28 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

Be prepared if a disaster strikes

Developing an emergency response plan for your farm makes sense By Danielle Nauman danielle.n@dairystar.com

Facing an emergency or natural disaster on the farm is something dairy farmers hope they avoid. Being prepared and having response plans in place can make all the difference if the worst might happen. Preparing for an emergency was the topic of the Jan. 12 University of Wisconsin Dairy Insight series, which was presented by UW Agriculture Extension Educators Jim Versweyveld of Walworth County and Carl Duley of Buffalo County. “There are a number of unique aspects to farms that make them potentially challenging for emergency personnel that might respond to a farm emergency,” Versweyveld said. “Farms today are highly specialized, with potentially dangerous aspects of their operations that emergency responders may not be familiar with, such as equipment or facilities that they may not be familiar with. Keep in mind that less than 2% of the population is involved directly with production agriculture, so it is very likely that rst responders that would arrive on scene at your farm would have a limited farm background.” Versweyveld said the remoteness of farm locations can often present a challenge to rst responders. The properties are usually expansive or have multiple locations. “Unlike urban or suburban emergencies, which typically occur very close to the re number, in the case of farms the emergency could occur miles from the re number, and that makes for a challenge,” Versweyveld said. Not only does the remote-

ness of farm locales make locating the emergency more difcult for rst responders, travel time often signicantly decreases the response time. For example, Duley said there are areas in Wisconsin that are more than 30 minutes from the nearest medical facility. The make-up of those response teams can sometimes present a challenge in logistics and response time as well. “Nearly 92% of rural reghters and 75% of rural EMS responders in Wisconsin are volunteers,” Duley said. “In addition, in the response teams I am involved with in rural Buffalo County, there are only two of us in our EMS that have farm experience, and in the re department, there are about ve out of 18 remen that have farm experience.” Inviting local emergency responders to your farm is a good way to help familiarize them with your farm in the event of an emergency. The highly specialized nature of equipment and facilities on farms creates another challenge for rst responders, particularly those without a farm background or agricultural knowledge. Because of those challenges, Versweyveld suggests all farms create emergency preparedness plans in case the event of a disaster or emergency on farm. Versweyveld said an emergency preparedness plan is a written document available as both a training tool and a resource for anyone who works on or is involved with the farm. That written plan would include the key people involved in the farm and what responsibilities each would shoulder

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CreaƟng a map of the farm is an important piece of being prepared for an emergency. in the event of an emergency, a farm map with exit routes, emergency contacts, animal handling considerations, and plans for both labor and marketing disruptions. Dening the roles and responsibilities of the key people in a farm operation is the rst aspect of creating an emergency response plan, Versweyveld said. Sitting down with members of the farm leadership and discussing possible scenarios is a good way to begin this process, he said. Each individual’s strengths and weaknesses should be taken into account when determining those roles. Versweyveld encourages creating a chain of command for emergency situations to help avoid confusion during highly stressful situations. Designating one person to be a media contact may also be helpful in the case of an emergency. Emergency contact listings should be posted and made available to the farm team and include, 911, the contacts for local and state veterinarians, local emergency management

personnel, poison control, the farm’s insurance agents and key neighbors that may be relied on in the event of an emergency. Creating a map of the farm is an important piece of being prepared for an emergency. It includes things that might not normally be thought of as important information but could make all the difference in preparing for an emergency. Farm maps should identify roads and crossroads, and the locations of buildings, silos, grain and manure storage areas, wells, hydrants, ponds and streams, septic and wastewater systems, chemical and fertilizer storage, overhead and buried power and utility lines, as well as gas and electrical shut-offs. Versweyveld encourages farmers to identify at least two possible evacuation routes from the farm and to familiarize all family members and employees with those routes and plans. He also encourages farmers to consider developing a plan to shelter animals if needed, such as a fairgrounds

or other farms. In addition to having those locations planned, make plans for having sufcient feed sources available in a timely manner. A spot should be designated for regrouping after an evacuation to help account for everyone, especially because cell service may be interrupted in the wake of a disaster. Not all emergencies may require an evacuation, and sheltering in place might be the safest option, which might be the case in the event of a severe winter storm. Versweyveld recommends having plans in place to deal with a loss of utilities and keeping supplies and other necessary provisions in the areas where you might be taking shelter. While not every situation can be expected or prepared for, taking the time to create a basic response plan and communicating those plans with everyone that could potentially be involved can make the difference in how your farm comes through in the event of an emergency or disaster.

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What is management? By Joe Armstrong & Emily Krekelberg University of Minnesota

Management is a general term that could mean something different to everyone. A difcult term to dene, management often refers to the day-to-day operations of the farm and is pointed to as the most important predictor of success. Despite the lack of an industry-wide agreed upon denition, we view the following as the components of management. – Basic husbandry. Basic husbandry is just like it sounds, the basics. Think of this as Animal Care 101. Water, shelter, cleanliness and lowstress handling are all components of basic husbandry. Animals are healthier and more productive when they are hydrated, clean, dry and handled with minimal stress. Water is without question the most important nutrient and should be accessible to all animals at all times. Shelter doesn’t necessarily always mean a roof overhead. A wellmaintained bedded pack and a windbreak can mean shelter as well. Animals need protection from the elements in some way. Cleanliness prevents disease, promotes cow comfort and instills a sense of pride in your operation. Low-stress handling is a must for all operations. Basic stockmanship is an essential skill for all people on the farm. – Nutrition. In general, a healthy rumen equals a healthy cow. The ration and how it is delivered impacts growth, productivity, immune status and reproduction. A correct body condition score combined with a balanced mineral status creates healthy cows and healthy offspring. Quality ingredients are a must for optimal health and productivity. Arguably, water should also be included in this category as it is the most important nutrient and drives dry matter intake. Important to note, the on-paper ration and the actual ration the cows eat rarely match. Correct ration formulation is crucial, but how, where and when it is delivered is an equally important aspect of nutrition. – Communication. Communication is key to any relationship. This includes communication with employees, partners, nutritionists, veterinarians and milk haulers; pretty much everyone that you work with. Clear communication of expectations, protocols, responsibilities and treatment of animals trickles down from the top. Keep in mind this might include needing to use languages other than English. Additionally, keep in mind that even when translated not everyone is literate, so pictures and in-person teaching have the biggest impact. Employee training is a huge piece of communication, and the operation’s success depends on well-trained employees. – Preparation. Prevention is better than treatment. Be proactive rather than reactive. Look ahead and be as prepared as possible for the different possibilities. Finding and stopping an issue before it gets going will always be superior to moving after something is engrained. In many ways, this category ties in with everything else. Communication, basic husbandry and nutrition all play a part in being prepared. – Adaptation. When it comes to farming, things don’t go as planned. The ability to adapt to these changes is crucial for livestock success. Again this category leans on others. Being prepared makes it easier to adapt, having great communication skills moves the new plan forward and being constantly vigilant with basic husbandry mitigates the impact of changes to the plan. Adapting requires knowledge of the system as a whole and intuition for how pieces of your operation t together. The better you know the system, the easier it is to adapt when necessary. – Evaluation.

There isn’t a way to know if something is working unless you evaluate an outcome. When anything is implemented, plan to measure an outcome to determine success before it is implemented. Evaluating current practices and protocols creates efciency by eliminating practices that are not benecial and keeping those that show measured improvement for the operation. – Attention to detail. Often the success of a particular piece of the system is reliant on attention to details. Cleanliness in particular is rooted in attention to detail. Micro-managing is not recommended, but instilling the same attention to detail you would take with a task in your employees is recommended. Attention to detail is tied directly to your farm’s culture and the pride you and your employees take in their role on the farm. – Established farm culture. Your farm should have a distinct feeling to it, an identity that gives you and your employees pride in working on the farm. Creating a positive environment with shared goals makes for an easier workday. While some of the ways we create farm culture may seem small, they have a huge impact on your success. A culture is a set of shared attitudes, values, goals, and practices that characterizes an institution or organization. The culture you set on your farm will inuence how people prioritize work and do their jobs. Spend some time thinking about what is most important to you as a business owner. Some examples are cleanliness, safety, animal care and milking efciency. Consider the values and goals you have already outlined and how those t into the culture you want. Hire employees who take your culture seriously, and through the entire hiring and training process, emphasize how important it is to you. Talk about the informal ways in which you envision the farm being a work environment that encourages your identied values and goals. Also teach about parts of the current culture that you’re working on changing. You could say, “You may notice that a few people take shortcuts on certain jobs. We’re working on building a culture that encourages safety. My expectation is that you will take all proper safety precautions regardless of what others may still do.” Farm culture isn’t about what you say, it’s about what you do. A leader’s inuence is very strong, and that is no different on the farm. Setting an example will show everyone on your farm what the expectation is and prove you are no exception to the expectation. Feedback plays a major role in any organization, and it allows you to know what works and what doesn’t as you develop your farm culture. Keep in mind that feedback is a two-way street. You should not only give feedback on performance but listen to feedback from others on practices that are and aren’t working. This is also a great way for others on the farm to share their ideas and become invested in being a part of the farm culture. Everyone is responsible for upholding farm culture, and one individual should not be blamed for a mistake. Your farm culture should make everyone comfortable enough to correct mistakes or nd solutions. Work with everyone on your farm to understand that if something does happen, it’s due to a failure of the whole system, not one person. Decide how you measure the effective practice of your farm’s culture. Determine as a team how you want to measure your success. Next, decide how you reward effective performance. Ideas include monetary bonuses, a pizza party or even verbal recognition. Include everyone in deciding how this step looks; it is important to know what motivates people.

Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 29

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Recipes for the heart Page 30 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

Though planting and harvesting season is months ahead of us – or behind us, depending on your outlook – the needs of the younger crew still keep me hopping in the kitchen. They are eager eaters and honest critics. This makes for a good combination when you like to try new recipes, as I very much do. I have mentioned before that I am quite loyal to my tried and true Taste of Home recipe collections. My Taste of Home Breads cookbook is showing its level of love these days – the binding is giving out in spots, but those splash covered pages contain so many delectable treats, and notes of great importance, I simply can’t retire it. It is just hitting its prime years of cookbook life. I’ve added a few must-have cookbooks to my shelves (and to the back and forth ‘cookbook bag’ I carry from home to farm daily). I have a soft spot for all things Tasha Tudor: the children’s books that she wrote and illustrated, her books lled with incredible

pictures of her gardens, books about her life in Vermont, and of course, her cookbooks. I was paging through The Tasha Tudor Cookbook: Recipes and Reminiscences from Corgi Cottage when I happened upon her recipe for Oatmeal Bread a couple Sundays ago, and it was so easy and divine that making it has become part of my Sunday routine. She notes that she won rst prize with this bread at the Danbury Fair when she was 15, and still boasts of it at age 77. She says it is best eaten fresh; freezing is not for these lovely loaves. I agree, and it will ll your house with such an enticing aroma, you will not want to wait until they cool to eat them. My boys all love it, and it makes my heart happy just to make it.

2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats 4 teaspoons salt 1 cup light molasses (or maple syrup) 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 4 cups boiling water

Oatmeal Bread by Tasha Tudor (makes 3 loaves)

Mix lightly, then turn onto oured surface and knead well for 8-10 By Jacqui Davison minutes, until dough is smooth and elastic. Place Columnist dough in large, greased bowl, turning dough over to grease top, and cover with warm towel. Let rise another hour or until doubled. Turn dough out onto oured surface and divide into 3 sections. Work out air bubbles. Place loaves in prepared pans, cover, and let rise until doubled, another hour. In a preheated 350 degree oven, bake 50 minutes to 1 hour or until sound hollow when tapped. Remove from pans and cool on racks.

Mix the above ingredients together and let set for one hour. Then add:

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2 packages dry yeast, dissolved in 1 cup warm water 10 cups our

Another of my absolute favorite cookbooks is Farm Recipes & Food Secrets from the Norse Nook by Helen Myhre with Mona Vold. The Norse (Norwegian) Nook is a restaurant in Osseo, Wisconsin, and this cookbook is lled with the most delicious, easy, farm friendly recipes. Much like Tasha Tudor’s book, it has little stories before most all of the sections or individual recipes. You can read it like a novel. The author has a spot titled “Hints” at the beginning of each new section. These sections are lled with the answers to all the questions you would call and ask your grandma about cooking her recipes. Seeing as how my Gramma Ike was a Norwegian woman, it feels like I’m talking to her. Right down to the occasional ‘uffda’ making it on the page, this book will ll your farm cooking heart with joy. This biscuit recipe is a breeze to make and was well used during cropping to ll with meat; now it accompanies soups. It also works to add cheese and herbs into the dough, and push into mufn cups to hold scrambled eggs and sausage. Fair’s Choice Baking Powder Biscuits (makes a dozen biscuits) “There are a lot of baking powder biscuit recipes in the world, but I am fond of this one. On the farm, baking powder biscuits are as handy as wheels on a wagon.” 2 heaping cups of our ½ teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon sugar 4 teaspoons baking powder ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar ½ cup butter 1 egg ¾ cup milk (approximately) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In large bowl combine dry ingredients. Add butter and, using your ngers, mix until crumbly. Put the egg into a 1-cup measuring cup, beat a bit with a fork. Fill the cup with milk. Pour into dry ingredients, and mix until moistened (not too hard). The dough will be coarse and lumpy. Pat dough out on oured board or table and cut with a water glass or old sharp-edged Calumet baking powder can. Place biscuits on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 1520 minutes, or until the biscuits begin to get golden. Jacqui and her family milk 800 cows and run 1,200 acres of crops in the northeastern corner of Vernon County, Wis. Her children, Ira (14), Dane (12), Henry (7) and Cora (4), help her on the farm while her husband, Keith, works on a grain farm. If she’s not in the barn, she’s probably in the kitchen, trailing after little ones, or sharing her passion of reading with someone. Her life is best described as organized chaos – and if it wasn’t, she’d be bored.


Nutrition key to reproductive success

Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 31

Reproductive success is a major component of economic success in dairy herds. Most herds have noticed signiďƒžcant improvement in reproductive performance the past decade. Today, some herds are approaching 40% pregnancy rate. Credit is due to the sophistication of Something to Ruminate On breeding programs, real-time heat detection tools and emphasis on fertility traits in genetic selection programs, such as daughter pregnancy rate and sire conception rate. We continue to see improvements in cow comfort, heat abatement, and By Barry Visser forage and feed bunk Nutritionist management. Nutrition also plays a major role in reproductive efďƒžciency in dairy cattle. This column will serve as a reminder of nutritional components that promote the best breeding performance possible. The feeding program throughout all production stages is important for optimizing a herd’s reproductive efďƒžciency. Dry matter intake begins to drop seven to 10 days pre-calving. Feeding practices today aim to minimize the pre-calving DMI drop to diminish the extent and magnitude of negative energy balance. Stable DMI intake before and high DMI after calving usually minimize post-calving metabolic problems and the magnitude of negative energy balance. One of the consequences of metabolic diseases is that cows have reduced appetite and oftentimes lose more bodyweight. The goal is for cows to have a body condition score of no greater than 3.5 during the dry period and to lose less than 1 BCS during early lactation. Cornell University data revealed that the ďƒžrst ovulation after calving typically occurs about 10 to 14 days after energy balance is at its most negative point. The point when a cow starts her upward swing sets the timing for subsequent ovulations. In addition, the follicle that will ovulate near the ďƒžrst insemination began development shortly before or just after calving. The follicle takes about 10 weeks to develop according to Dr. Jose Santos, University of Florida reproductive specialist. Thus, follicles ovulating near the time of ďƒžrst breeding were likely developing during the time of negative energy bal ance. The extent and magnitude of the negative energy balance may affect the fertility of the ovum released. Relative to reproduction, the goal for feeding protein has been to not feed it in excess, especially not excessive amounts of rumen degradable protein. Milk and blood urea nitrogen (MUN and BUN, respectively) are monitored accordingly. According to Dr. Mike Hutjens, University of Illinois, the actual targets for MUN are 8 to 12 mg per dL with the aim at reducing feed costs and nitrogen excretion by animals. In addition to environmental beneďƒžts, reducing excess nitrogen reduces energy demand on the cow because the process to excrete nitrogen requires energy. High circulating concentrations of ammonia and urea may be toxic to sperm, ova or embryos, or may reduce the binding of luteinizing hormone to ovarian receptors, which leads to a decrease in serum progesterone. In general, the focus has been the potential for embryo mortality with high BUN, which is reďƒ&#x;ected in higher MUN. Nutritionists use amino acid balancing to reduce overall dietary crude protein and improve protein efďƒžciency. An increasing amount of data shows beneďƒžts to overall reproductive success. Maintenance

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of pregnancy is obviously as important as conception rates. In addition to reducing BUN, University of Wisconsin research showed lactating dairy cows supplemented with a protected methionine source saw reduced incidences of early embryonic loss. Researchers are currently re-evaluating cows’ protein and amino acid requirements in early lactation during negative energy balance. Minerals (macro and trace minerals) and vitamins (A, D, E) are all critical to metabolic functions related to reproduction. While these nutrients are always important for production, health and reproductive performance, mineral and vitamin availability is particularly critical during the period between freshening and rebreeding. Use of highly available sources (maximizing absorption) is helpful to ensure status in the animal and prevent over-formulation that can create other problems, including antagonisms of

2

one mineral due to high levels of another. Although still an area requiring considerable research, numerous trials have shown a response to the correct balance of essential fatty acids. Protected forms of omega-3 and omega-6 fats may be beneďƒžcial to reproduction. Nutrition related to reproductive efďƒžciency is a delicate balance. Energy and protein are the major nutrients and should be in the topmost priority to optimize reproduction in dairy cattle. Minerals and vitamins must be balanced in the diet. On the other hand, nutrients should not be over-fed as this may also impair reproduction. Work with your nutritionist to ensure your cows receive a balanced diet designed to maximize reproductive performance and herd proďƒžtability. Barry Visser is a nutritionist for Vita Plus.

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I am ne

Page 32 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

What a great winter to milk cows. No major snowstorms to dig out from under. No lingering subzero temperatures to thaw out from. Winter is over halfway done, and it hasn’t been too bad. Spring is right around the corner, and we know any precipitation we receive now will quickly be gone. Of course, this has to be the winter we took off milking, but it is still working out. We’re enjoying the slower pace while we’re trying to nd our new rhythm. Breaking our work loop was a great rst step in a new direction. Wobbly and tentative but still a good step in a new direction. Don’t know where it is going to take us yet, but at least we’re moving in some direction. I’m enjoying our time off this winter, but I really am missing a regular routine. Of course when I envisioned this break, I saw us traveling to visit family and friends. Trips to explore new areas and discover new ideas to old problems. In reality, we have been staying home for the most part, but I just couldn’t take it any longer. My

uncle Sid passed away in mid-December, and I kept my distance to protect my families during the holidays. By mid-January, I was itching to hit the road. Loaded up with face masks and a large bottle of hand sanitizer, I headed south for home. I hadn’t seen my family in over a year. That was long enough. While I was there, I was content to hang out at home with my mom. Just the two of us going through boxes of old family pictures, trying to put names of the past with the photos in our hands. Mom was not thrilled to go through our boxes of pictures, but as she discovered going through Uncle Sid’s stuff, if she didn’t, then these people would be lost to future generations. After a week of taking it easy, it was time to load up and head back to Minnesota. I brought back several family treasures. My grandmother’s icebox refrigerator. She used it to store cookies, pies and hide liquor bottles. My great grandparent’s International Harvester cream

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separator. I don’t think it was ever used. My great-great aunt Addie’s dining room set. It has been waiting for over 60 years to have a family gather around it again. Since we have all this free time on our hands, I thought Mark and I could nd a new routine restoring Just Thinking Out Loud and cleaning up my family treasures. As I headed north between snowstorms across Iowa, my sister called to tell me that our niece tested positive for COVID-19. Before I made it home, I swung in to St. Cloud for a drivethru COVID-19 test. Of course I came back By Natalie Schmitt positive as did my mom. Columnist So now I’m nishing up my quarantine period. As mom said, she’s been quarantined for 11 months already, what’s the difference? Luckily for both of us, it was a mild case, and we’ll be ne soon. Once the family knew of our exposure, we have been receiving calls to check on how we’re feeling. The standard answer for both my mom and me is, “I’m ne.” Which reminds me of a story my cousin shared on Facebook. It is the story about Clyde, his favorite cow Bessie and a tractor accident. You can imagine overhearing the coffee club guys telling this story at the feed store. A farmer named Clyde had a tractor accident. In court, the trucking company’s fancy hot-shot lawyer was questioning Clyde on the stand. “Didn’t you say, at the scene of the accident, ‘I’m ne,’” asked the lawyer. Clyde responded, “Well, I’ll tell you what happened. I had just loaded my favorite cow, Bessie, into the …” “I didn’t ask for any details,” the lawyer interrupted. “Just answer the question … please. Did you or did you not say, at the scene of the accident, ‘I’m ne,’” Clyde said. “Well I had just got Bessie into the trailer behind the tractor, and I was driving down the road.” The lawyer interrupted again and said, “Your Honor. I am trying to establish the fact that, at the scene of the accident, this man told the highway patrol on the scene that he was just ne. Now several weeks after the accident, he is trying to sue my client. I believe he is a fraud. Please tell him to simply answer the question.” By this time, the judge was fairly interested in Clyde’s answer and said to the lawyer, “I’d like to hear what he has to say about his favorite cow, Bessie.” Clyde thanked the judge and proceeded. “Well, as I was saying. I had just loaded Bessie, my favorite cow, into the trailer and was driving her down the highway when this huge semi-truck and trailer ran the stop sign and smacked my John Deere tractor right in the side. I was thrown into one ditch and Bessie was thrown into the other. I was hurting real bad and didn’t want to move. However, I could hear old Bessie moaning and groaning. I knew she was in terrible shape just by the sound. “Shortly after the accident, a highway patrolman came on the scene. He could hear Bessie moaning and groaning, so he went over to her. After he looked at her and saw her fatal condition, he took out his gun and shot her between the eyes. The patrolman came across to road, gun still in his hand, looked at me and said, ‘How are you feeling?’” “Now tell me, what the heck would you say?” “I am ne!” Natalie, Mark and his brother Al, farm together near Rice, Minn. They milk 100 registered Holsteins under the RALMA prex. Their four children are grown up and all involved in agriculture with hopes of someone returning to the farm. For questions or comments, please e-mail Natalie at mnschmitt@jetup.net

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The people of our lives

I didn’t grow up in a Christmas card family. But I married into one. And it wasn’t long before sending a Christmas greeting became part of our holiday routine. Then, after we added a third child to our fold, I folded on our Christmas card tradition. I sent out a combination birth announcement and Christmas card when Daphne was born. By the time Christmas came around the next year, I decided not to mail cards, in hopes of saving time, money, natural Dairy Good Life resources, and, mostly, my sanity. Instead of sending cards, I switched to digital greetings. I shared Christmas letters and photos in blog posts. Truth be told, writing a Christmas letter was much harder than simply sending a card. You’d think that, for a writer, penning a Christmas letter would be easy, but I struggled with what to include, what to leave out, nding the ne line between sharing accomplishments and bragging. Writing Christmas letters is its own art. Now, I’m so glad I wrote those letters, because they are a joy to re-read. This nostalgia helped prompt the revival of our By Sadie Frericks Christmas letter tradition – along with the sage words Columnist of my friend Suzanne, who wrote in her early holiday letter: “If you’re thinking of skipping the work of sending a Christmas greeting, please reconsider; it’s often all we get for the year – one small glimpse into each other’s lives, but it does serve to encourage and strengthen our long-distance relationships with you. At least I can say with condence that in the whirlwind of our busy lives, we appreciate knowing that we are still somehow connected to you.” And, then, as if Suzanne’s rst paragraph wasn’t enough of a gentle nudge, she signed the letter with a more substantial nudge: “Love to hear from you guys!” It didn’t take long for me to make up my mind. The shift in our society towards digital-only connections has left me feeling more and more unconnected. The allure of an old fashioned, tangible letter won over my time-constraint based hesitation. It helped, too, that we had actually had a nice family photo to include with a letter. Glen’s sister needed a photo of us for a project, so she took several pictures for us one Sunday afternoon. Before that, we hadn’t done anything or gone anywhere in nearly 12 months that had required us all to look presentable at the same time. Glen and the kids agreed that sending a Christmas card felt like a good idea. Monika offered to help with stamping and addressing envelopes. Glen asked each of our children to write down the best parts of 2020; he and I made lists, too. In a year when so much was postponed or altogether canceled, those lists helped us look back at all of the fun things we did; to see all of the goodness that happened, despite all of the challenges. I assembled all of the lists into a letter – one that I’m sure I will enjoy reading when I come across it in the future. (If you’d like to read our letter, I did post it on my blog, as well – www.dairygoodlife.com.) The next step in the card sending process was updating our address list. I denitely did not budget enough time for that task. After eight years of collecting dust, our address list was signicantly outdated. You don’t realize how many moves and life changes happen in the lives of our family and friends over the years until you edit them all at once. When cards and envelopes arrived and letters were picked up from the printer, Monika got to work stufng envelopes and afxing stamps. One night while I worked on Christmas cookies, Monika worked on addressing Christmas cards. With nearly every address label that she applied, she asked the same questions: “Who is this? How do we know them?” This was the only part of our Christmas card revival that I did not expect. Many of the friends on our mailing list are connections from other times in our lives or other places we lived. I’ve kept them on our list over the years because I value our connection – even if it’s been years since we connected in person. But I didn’t realize that our kids have never met some of the friends and family on our list, except maybe through the Christmas cards they send to us. Answering Monika’s questions was a poignant reminder for me of all the wonderful people we call friends and family. It was also a family history lesson for Monika about all of the places we lived and jobs we held before we bought our farm. I took one other tip from Suzanne’s letter. Instead of collecting the Christmas cards we receive in a basket on our table, as I’ve done in the past, I strung the cards up along a wall in our kitchen, bunting-style. The smiling faces of the friends and family we hold dear are still decorating our kitchen now. I may just leave the cards up all year, so that we are continually reminded of the people who enrich our lives. Sadie and her husband, Glen, milk 100 cows near Melrose, Minn. They have three children – Dan, 13, Monika, 11, and Daphne, 7. Sadie also writes a blog at www.dairygoodlife.com. She can be reached at sadiefrericks@gmail.com.

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Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 33

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Page 34 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

Kliebenstein enjoys in-home bakery business By Danielle Nauman danielle.n@dairystar.com

DARLINGTON, Wis. – For Morgan Kliebenstein, baking and decorating cakes is a way to remember her late grandmother. Sharing that talent is a way for Kliebenstein to keep her grandmother with her, and her hobby has morphed into a small business, The Farmer’s Wife Bakery. “My grandma Evelyn was very dear to me,” Kliebenstein said. “She lived just down the road, so I spent a lot of time at her house. She took cake deco-

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rating classes and then made all kinds of birthday, graduation and wedding cakes for people.” Kliebenstein recalls the birthday cakes her grandmother made for family members, including a Barbie cake she counts among her favorites and one she was able to recreate for her own daughter’s birthday using her grandmother’s cake pan. In addition to her grandmother’s pans, Kliebenstein has a photo album of the cakes her grandmother made and decorated. Kliebenstein and her husband, Nate, milk 220 cows on their dairy farm in Darlington where they raise their daughters, Evelyn, 7, and Edith, 5. In addition to the farm and the in-home bakery, Kliebenstein also works remotely at a full-time job.

DANIELLE NAUMAN/DAIRY STAR

Morgan Kliebenstein enjoys baking and decoraƟng cakes and uses them in her own in-home bakery business, The Farmer’s Wife Bakery. Kliebenstein and husband, Nate, milk 220 cows near Darlington, Wisconsin.

PHOTO SUBMITTED

Kliebenstein enjoys making special cakes to help celebrate milestones.

“I made my rst decorated cake about 11 years ago when I was dating my husband,” Kliebenstein said. “I was trying to impress him. It must have worked, and it just sort of grew from there.” Having grown up spending time in her grandmother’s kitchen, baking has always been an activity Kliebenstein has enjoyed, and she likes honing the

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similar baked goods each week. Until this past fall, space has been a limiting factor to Kliebenstein’s baking hobby. Recently the family built a new house on the farm with a spacious kitchen. “This new kitchen is like a dream for me and has really allowed me to enjoy baking

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Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 35

ConĆ&#x;nued from KLIEBENSTEIN | Page 34

PHOTO SUBMITTED

The Kliebenstein family – (from leĹŒ) Evelyn, Nate, Morgan and Edith – milks 220 cows on their dairy farm in Darlington, Wisconsin. again,â€? Kliebenstein said. Kliebenstein does not necessarily advertise her services, but instead relies on social media and word of mouth to create the orders she takes on. “It has gotten to the point that I have had to turn down some orders,â€? Kliebenstein said. “I don’t want it to become something that is overwhelming or interferes with my work or family time. One thing that people sometimes don’t think about when placing orders is the amount of time and planning that might be involved in creating it. Instead, they’ll ask for something to be done the next day, which typically is not possible.â€? Kliebenstein said depending on the

type of cake and the complexity of the decorating, it can take as much as 10 hours to complete one cake, including baking, leveling, ďƒžlling, frosting and decorating. As the bakery business has grown, Kliebenstein has branched out from birthday cakes and cupcakes into the world of wedding cakes and has completed cakes for events. In addition to working with traditional buttercream frosting, Kliebenstein has found a liking for working with fondant. “Fondant is not something that the previous generations have done, but it alTurn to KLIEBENSTEIN | Page 37

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Page 36 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

Women In Dairy Doreen Berndt-Paral Hartford, Wisconsin Dodge County 650 cows

Family: My late husband, Keith Berndt, and I have three adult sons – Heath, Levi and Calvin. Heath and his wife, Jennifer, have three children – Lindsay May, 13, Alexandria, 3, and George, 2. In 2016, I married Eli Paral. Tell us about your farm. Dairy Queen’s Farms, also known as Berndt’s Family Farm, is a fth-generation dairy farm. I farm with my sons and my second husband, Eli, and daughter-in-law. The farm has been in Keith’s family for 101 years. When Keith and I took over in 1983, we were milking 74 cows in a tiestall barn. We moved into the freestall barn in December 1999. We’ve added onto the farm three times, and now we milk 650 cows and farm 650 acres with help from eight full-time employees. My sons were 23, 18 and 8 when their dad passed away in 2009 at the age of 49 from a brain aneurysm. My oldest son and his wife were farming with us, and we decided to keep the farm going. We were milking 250 cows at the time and it was hard without Keith by my side. It was a process, and I took it day by day, step by step, just trying to breathe. Along the journey, God placed so many helpful people in my path. I came to the farm when I was 18 years old after marrying Keith, and I’ve been here almost 40 years. Even though farming can be very challenging, we love what we do and have a strong love for the farm. What is the busiest time of day for you? That depends on the day but probably mornings. That is when I organize my work for the day, answer emails and do bookwork. I am the nancial “queen” and manage the nancials. I am not a businesswoman, but I had to become one. I also help manage employees and do payroll and other human resources tasks. I stopped milking cows ve years ago and now focus on the nances. I also like to seek advice from fellow farmers. These things only help the farm to be better. When you get a spare moment what do you do? I sit in my chair in the living room with a cup of coffee and I pray. This is my moment of peace. We also have ve draft horses that we like to show and take for rides. They are a rare breed of draft horse known as a Suffolk Punch. Two years ago, we were invited to show them at the Midwest Horse Fair in Madison. It was a cool experience. I never had a horse until I met Eli. Together, we’ve had the opportunity to do so many fun things. It just proves

Tell us about your most memorable experience working on the farm. A memory that sticks out is from when Keith and I rst started dating. I thought it would be so cool to see a calf born, but my rst experience was not a great one. A rst-calf heifer was freshening and had complications. There was a lot going on that I didn’t understand, so I ran out of the barn crying. I grew up in town and was pretty soft when I came to the farm. It’s ironic because this eventually became an area where I took responsibility on our farm. I watched and helped cows that were about to freshen and cows in labor until the calves were born. What have you enjoyed most about dairy farming or your tie to the dairy industry? Working with my family and being close to the land and animals. I’ve always loved animals and working together on the farm as a family is great. It’s nice to see everybody pitching in and being on the same page. How do you stay connected with others in the industry? Through Facebook and just seeing people in town. Who is someone in the industry who has inspired you? Mildred McCaffrey. I’ve known her my whole life because my parents rented a house from her family when they were rst married. Mildred was a hearty farm woman who liked to cook and bake and made delicious pies and hearty meals. She was an amazing woman with a great sense of humor, and she made farming sound so appealing. If you could give a tour of your farm to a prominent woman in today’s society, who would it be? Oprah Winfrey. She has put a negative twist on farming, and I would love for someone like Oprah to dedicate a year of her life touring the country and spending a week on some of these farms – whether they be dairy, beef or crop farms. She could work with the family each day and see the good that farmers do on a regular basis. Novelty does not feed a nation. People like Oprah need to understand the value of our food and the work and effort we put into producing a quality product – the sweat, dedication and long suffering because we believe in what we do. The American farmer feeds the nation, and this would help her get a grasp on what it takes to feed this nation.

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ConĆ&#x;nued from KLIEBENSTEIN | Page 35

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PHOTO SUBMITTED

Kliebenstein made cow arrangement of cupcakes. Cupcakes are becoming a popular alternaĆ&#x;ve to tradiĆ&#x;onal cakes. lows for a whole other element for creating and decorating,â€? Kliebenstein said. “It is like grown-up play dough; you can model it and cut it into so many different shapes.â€? Searching for new recipes, ďƒ&#x;avor combinations and things to try is a part of baking that Kliebenstein enjoys, and she often tests those on her family and friends. That led her to trying her hand at making and selling holiday trufďƒ&#x;es. This past Christmas marked the third year Kliebenstein has offered holiday trufďƒ&#x;es. Since her initial offering, she has taken orders for the holiday treats, and this year made nearly 1,500 trufďƒ&#x;es in six varieties. “I limit the orders to what I can accomplish in a weekend,â€? Kliebenstein said. “This year, it took about 20 hours to make them. I have one stand-by ďƒ&#x;avor that I make every year, and then I add in other ďƒ&#x;avors.â€? Kliebenstein’s clientele is local, allowing for ease of pick up or delivery of her baked goods, and she laughed as she shared that many of her trufďƒ&#x;e orders came from other members of her gym. Because she has had so many inquiries about having trufďƒ&#x;es available at Valentine’s Day, she is considering offering boxes of special goodies for the holiday. Like her grandmother did with her, Kliebenstein shares her love of baking with her daughters.

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PHOTO SUBMITTED

Kliebenstein used a special decoraĆ&#x;ng Ć&#x;p called a grass Ć&#x;p to make this special birthday cake for a client. “I try to do most of my client baking when the house is quiet, but the girls love to help bake; their favorite is to help me bake banana bread,â€? Kliebenstein said. “They also love cake scraps, the pieces that are left after leveling. I let them decorate with and play with leftover buttercream and fondant.â€? Kliebenstein hopes these times help create special memories for her daughters and is a way to allow her grandmother’s spirit to live on.

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How cold calves can freeze your prots Page 38 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

Building a snowman. Ice shing. way to check for dampness is the knee Polar bear plunges. Many of us cherish test. Kneel on the bedding for about 30 all things winter. But for your calves, seconds to a minute. If you stand up and the winter cold can be dangerous and your knees are wet or cold, then there negatively impact their future milk isn’t enough bedding. production. Cold stress – Review newborn Calf Chronicles inuences growth rates as protocols with employees: calves use their energy to Make sure your calf care keep warm instead of for team knows why they growth. In a Cornell study, need to keep calves warm researchers found that an and dry and how to be increase of 2.2 pounds in most efcient getting the daily gain during the prejob done. wean period can result in – Use calf jackets to 1,874 pounds more milk keep calves warm: A rule in rst-lactation cows, of thumb for using jackets and the trend continues in is when the daytime high later lactations. Clearly, it and the nighttime low is important to optimize added together equal 90 By Ellen Cushing average daily gain and degrees or less, it’s time Columnist take steps to protect to pull out those jackets. calves from cold stress. Make sure calves are – Check milk replacer (or milk) completely dry before putting a jacket feeding temperatures: The optimal on them and adjust straps weekly to temperature for feeding milk is 101-105 allow for growth. Between calves, degrees F. A calf’s body temperature is it’s important to launder jackets with about 102 degrees, and feeding milk at detergent in hot water to prevent that temperature means she does not spreading bacteria. have to use energy to warm up the milk. – As temperatures drop, increase This gets trickier in cold climates. Some the amount of milk being fed: Calves farmers keep bottles in a pail of warm use energy to keep themselves warm. water and feed a maximum of four Increasing the amount of milk or milk calves at a time. Others use insulated replacer fed will offset this energy tanks for storage or put lids on pails expenditure so calves are not consuming to keep the heat in. Take temperatures fewer calories than they use up. For during the feeding process to ensure every 10 degrees below 32 degrees, you’re within the ideal range. You a calf needs about 10% more milk to might be surprised how quickly the meet its nutritional requirements. You milk can get cold. can add more milk to each feeding or – Make sure bedding is dry and add another feeding in order to meet deep: Straw bedding is preferable in these needs. winter, allowing calves to nestle into it – Offer free choice water: Calves and reserve body heat. Bedding should that have available water show a be deep enough that you cannot see the higher average daily gain, but it can be calf’s legs when she lies down. One difcult to keep water in front of calves

in the colder months. You want calves to have access to water, but you don’t want it to freeze or be too cold that they have to use energy to warm it up as they drink. One way you can combat this is to provide warm water. Additionally, use the feed-and-dump method in cold months to help prevent water buckets from freezing. To implement this method, give calves in a row warm water, go back around and feed them, and then come back and dump water pails. Or put out warm water before you take your lunch break and then go back after and dump water buckets. – Block the wind: Wind chill can cause major problems for calves. To stop the wind, use wind breaks, patch up holes in hutches, use hay bales as a makeshift wall, or move hutches to a less windy area during the colder months. These steps will decrease the chance for frostbite and help calves save energy. – Boost employee morale: It’s not always fun to work outside in winter months. Even if you have a calf barn, chances are it’s chilly, and employees have to endure some rough elements. The cold adds one more layer of stress to your employees, so try to combat this with small acts of kindness. A coffee/ hot cocoa station, providing hand warmers or even a few winter caps can go a long way. It lets your employees know they are appreciated. Appreciated employees tend to work harder and feel more purpose from their job, which should result in overall better calf care. – Keep the maternity pen clean: The maternity pen is where it all starts. If the pathogen load is high in this pen, odds are you will deal with sick calves. Make sure the bedding is clean,

deep and dry to help keep calves warm and prevent pathogen exposure. Give special attention to this area when your calving numbers are higher. Rather than always cleaning out the maternity pen on a specic day, try to clean it every so many calves. A week where you have 20 calves is a lot different than a week when you have ve. – Prevent scours: Sick calves are never fun to deal with, but treating sick calves in the winter is the worst. Calves are born without an immune system, and colostrum antibodies are vital to preventing diseases, such as E. coli, coronavirus and rotavirus. Unfortunately, colostrum does not always have the antibody levels a calf needs to outweigh the environmental pathogen load, and that’s where you can insert a veried colostrum antibody product to help push your calves through the rst few weeks of life. Although prevention means taking another step early on in the calf’s life, it signicantly outweighs the cost of treating later. It might be tempting to rush through protocols when your skin prickles from the cold. But unlike calves, we can take care of ourselves. How well do you typically adjust for them in colder months? Remember, the effects of cold stress can linger far past the last snowmelt. Let’s protect our calves from all that conspires to harm them. Ellen is the First Defense regional sales and marketing manager for Wisconsin and Minnesota. She’s a problem solver who loves walking calf hutches and diagnosing protocol drift. A great day is a day spent helping dairy and beef farmers keep their baby calves healthy! Ellen can be reached at ecushing@immucell.com.

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Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021 • Page 39

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Miles Opitz Belmont, Wisconsin Lafayette County 900 cows

Tell us about a skill you possess that makes dairy farming easier for you. I am good with technology. It is hard to escape it these days. Almost all of the herd management is done on the computer anymore.

How did you get into farming? I have always been a farmer and knew I always wanted to be. I am the fourth generation dairy farmer; my greatgreat grandfather started farming in Wisconsin when he came from Germany.

What do you enjoy most about dairy farming? I like the exibility. You are not doing the same thing twice, and every day is different. What advice would you give other dairy farmers? I don’t know if I should be giving anyone advice. I think you need to work hard and make smart decisions.

What are your thoughts and concerns about the dairy industry for the next year? The commodity prices going up and the milk prices not following them concerns me. I think most of the supply variabilities from last spring are gone now. The federal milk marketing order that we are in, our average PPD over the past six months has been -5.97. What is the latest technology you implemented on your farm and the purpose for it? About two years ago, we built a new parlor with SCR milking equipment, which gives us daily milk weights. We already had the SCR collar system that monitored activity and rumination. All of the information the system provides is great, especially for helping manage fresh cows. What is a management practice you changed in the past year that has beneted you? We put in new free stalls. Prior to that everything was housed outside all year. We are now able to separate our rst-calf heifers

What has been the best purchase you have ever made on your farm? The SCR collar system; it has saved labor, and we have better heat detection. We used to have a full-time person for heat detection and sorting cows for breeding. from the rest of the herd. That has beneted us, as they were not competing well with the older cows. For example, we had one we recently moved out from the older cows, in with the rst-calf heifers. She went up 20 pounds per day, 150 days in milk. We also switched to three-times-aday milking, and that added about 10 pounds of milk per day to our herd average. This is the rst year we will be calving year-round after always calving seasonally. The economic benets of grazing are not quite as good as they used to be.

What cost-saving steps have you implemented during the low milk price? We have been expanding and making improvements to increase our pounds-per-cow average and lower our cost of production. How do you retain a good working relationship with your employees? Good communication is important. We hold regular meetings to keep people on the same page. I also try to have non-work-related conversations with my employees and be interested in their lives and families.

What are your plans for your dairy in the next year and ve years? In the next year, we are planning to put up another 300-cow freestall barn and add an additional 150 cows. In the next ve years, we will probably plan to add another 300-cow freestall. How do you or your family like to spend time when you are not doing chores? We like to spend time together at home. Most of the time we don’t have that much time together, as I am gone before they wake up. I have an 8-month-old son, and I like to spend time with him.

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Page 40 • Dairy Star • Saturday, January 30, 2021

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