Regional dairy meetings return to five Indiana counties

February 8, 2011

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Purdue Extension Dairy Team and Indiana Professional Dairy Producers will partner with the Indiana Forage Council to present five regional dairy meetings in February and March around the state.

All meetings will cover operation efficiency and proper animal care.

"Although milk prices have rebounded somewhat from the extreme lows in 2009, the high grain prices are once again putting dairy operations into a stressful financial situation," said Purdue Extension dairy specialist Tamilee Nennich. "In addition to the financial stresses, increased scrutiny on animal care also has been a major issue for dairy farms over the last year. The regional meetings will focus on management topics to provide producers with the tools to address some of these important issues on their farms."

The meetings will run from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at all locations. Dates, locations and contact information are as follows:

* Feb. 22: Elkhart County Community Center, Elkhart County 4-H Fairgrounds, 17746-E C.R. 34, Goshen. Contact: Jeff Burbrink, 574-533-0554,

* Feb. 23: Back 40 Junction Restaurant, 1011 N. 13th St., Decatur. Contact: Brad Kohlhagen, 260-724-5322,

* March 1: The Log Inn, 12653 S. 200 E., Warrenton. Contact: Hans Schmitz, 812-385-3491,

* March 2: Family Arts Building, Bartholomew County 4-H Fairgrounds, 750 W. 200 S., Columbus. Contact: Mike Ferree, 812-379-1665,

* March 3: Parke County Fairgrounds, U.S. 41 N., Rockville. Contact: Mark Spelbring, 765-569-3176,

At each meeting, Purdue Extension dairy specialist Jonathan Townsend will present "Getting Transition Cows off to a Great Start," and Nennich and Purdue Extension dairy specialist Mike Schutz will give dairy industry updates.

"In the dairy updates we will discuss somatic cell count regulations and proposed changes," Nennich said. "We also will update dairy producers on changes in the Indiana confined feeding operation rules."

In Goshen and Decatur, Betsy Flores of the national Milk Producers Federation will discuss the National Farmers Assuring Responsible Management (FARM) program, while the Warrenton, Columbus and Rockville meetings will feature Purdue Extension agricultural economist Nicole Olynk's presentation titled "Determining Economically Optimal Reproductive Management Programs."

Registration is free for the first registrant from a membership of the Indiana Professional Dairy Producers. Each additional registration from a farm or family of an IPDP member is $10. Non-IPDP member registration is $20 per person. Registration includes lunch.

Feb. 17 is the deadline to register for the Goshen and Decatur meetings, and Feb. 24 is the deadline for the Warrenton, Columbus and Rockville sessions. Brochures and registration forms are available by contacting the Purdue Extension offices listed above.  Registration forms should be mailed to Schutz at 125 S. Russell St. #105, West Lafayette, IN 47907.

The meetings are sponsored by the Indiana Farm Bureau, Indiana Corn Marketing Council, Indiana Soybean Alliance, Byron Seeds and Milk Promotion Services of Indiana.

Writer: Jennifer Stewart, 765-494-6682,

Source: Tamilee Nennich, 765-494-4823,

Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722;
Keith Robinson,
Agriculture News Page