Dairy Profit Seminars at Empire Farm Days 2017

Dairy Profit Seminars have become a regular stop for dairy producers, dairy farm staff and agribusiness professionals. This year’s show is slated for August 8 through 10 at the Rodman Lott & Son Farms near Seneca Falls, NY.

The 2017 Dairy Profit Seminars will include Robotics and Maximizing Milk Per Box: Grouping and Feeding; Transitioning to Automatic Milking Systems:  What Have We Learned?; and Is your farm a Member of the 7 Pound Club? Leading dairy producers into the next frontier of maximizing pounds of components produced, while maintaining profitability.

The seminars are a collaboration between Cornell’s PRO-DAIRY, Northeast Dairy Producers Association (NEDPA) and DairyBusiness & HolsteinWorld magazine. Each session will be held at the Dairy Seminar Center, located on the show grounds. They are free and open to the public.


The seminars are sponsored by: ASAP Interiors, Dairy Farmers of America, Farm Credit East, Farm Family Casualty Insurance, PikeSide Enterprises and Purina Animal Health.

Tuesday, August 8

10:30 am - Robotics and Maximizing Milk Per Box: Grouping and Feeding Strategies

Automated milking systems have skyrocketed in popularity. Many dairy farms have transitioned, are in the process of transitioning or are considering an automated system. If maximizing profit is a goal of your dairy, then maximizing milk per box in an automated system is critical. This seminar will focus on the factors affecting milk per box and the considerations for each.

Douglas F. Waterman, Ph.D. is the Director, Technology Application – Dairy, for Trouw Nutrition Agresearch. He is responsible for developing training programs to enhance the on-farm competency and skill of dairy nutritionists and provides field support. In addition, he is responsible for the implementation of new technology and products developed by Trouw Nutrition Agresearch throughout Canada (Shur Gain and Landmark), USA and Mexico.

Waterman is a native of New York State and holds degrees from SUNY Morrisville, Cornell University, and the University of Kentucky. Prior to Shur Gain, Waterman was the Director for Nutrition and Research for Milk Specialties Company.

Noon – Bridging the Beef Gap, presented by Beef Check Off

1:00 pm – Decreasing Risk and Maximizing Profit Through Pathogen Based Treatment of Clinical Mastitis and Strategic Dry Cow Therapy

Through advances in milk quality management not all cows with clinical mastitis need to be treated with an intramammary antibiotic nor do all cows on all farms need to be dry treated.  Knowing which mastitis pathogens are causing a case of clinical mastitis allows for more targeted treatment of pathogens that are likely to respond and not treating those that will not respond during lactation.  Understanding which cows are at high risk for having an intramammary infection or acquiring a new one at dry off and which ones are at low risk can allow for selective dry cow therapy.  Both strategies allow for saving money on treatment and labor while decreasing the risk of violative residues.  This seminar will discuss on-farm data from New York dairies that have adopted pathogen based treatment of clinical mastitis and selective dry cow therapy.

Daryl Nydam, DVM, PhD, is the Director of Quality Milk Production Services.  In addition he provides routine on-farm service to dairy farms through the Ambulatory and Production Medicine Service in the College of Veterinary Medicine.  As an associate professor of dairy health and production management he also teaches veterinary students and trains PhD students.  Nydam is a native of NYS where his grandparents had a small dairy farm and his father was a practicing dairy vet for 40 years.  He has a BS in Biochemistry from Geneseo and a DVM and PhD from Cornell.

Wednesday, August 9

9:00 am – Bridging the Beef Gap, presented by Beef Check Off

10:30 am - Transitioning to Automatic Milking Systems:  What Have We Learned?

Transitioning to automatic milking systems is a major change for a dairy farm, with the decision impacting many areas of the business. Join this panel as the lessons learned are shared in: budgeting and making the decision, planning the change, starting the system up, making management changes, and continuing to learn how to best utilize. Jason Karszes, Cornell PRO-DAIRY, will moderate a panel, which will include Bruce Dehm, Dehm Associates, and three NY farmer panelists, who have used automatic milking systems ranging from one year to eight years. These farmer panelists have seen increases in milk production and changes in how they manage their farms with transition to automatic milking systems.

Bruce Dehm is an agricultural economist and owns Dehm Associates, LLC, a farm business services company in Geneseo, New York. Dehm Associates LLC provides timely business management information to dairy farms in six states with a family of reports called The Dairy Dashboard. Since 1986 Dehm has worked with dairy producers in the Northeast to help them understand and grow their businesses. Dehm has Master of Science in Food and Resource Economics from the University of Florida, a Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University, an Associate’s degree from SUNY at Delhi.

Jason Karszes is a Senior Extension Associate and specializes in dairy business management. His focus areas are in management education, financial analysis, decision making, budgeting and business planning. The Cornell Dairy Executive Program, Dairy Farm Business Summary, Discussion Groups and Activity Cost Analysis Projects are some of the programs within his focus area. He completed his B.S. and M.S. degrees in farm management and production economics at Cornell University.

1:00 pmJunior DAIRY LEADER Formal Presentation and Graduation Ceremony

The Junior DAIRY LEADER is a statewide year long program for youth between the ages of 16 to 19 who have an interest in learning more about careers in the dairy field, along with adding to their leadership, personal and professional development. The graduation ceremony is an opportunity for these dairy leaders to highlight and demonstrate to sponsors and visitors the experiences, knowledge, and the dynamic aspects of dairy education they have learned from being in the program.

Thursday, August 10

9:00 am – Bridging the Beef Gap, presented by Beef Check Off

10:30 am - Is your farm a Member of the 7 Pound Club?  Leading dairy producers into the next frontier of maximizing pounds of components produced, while maintaining profitability.

The 7 Pound Club refers to dairies that produce more than 7 lbs per day combined of milk fat and true protein per cow, and therefore, achieve very high levels of net milk income per cow per day.  The panel will feature dairy producers who achieve these production levels, along with an economist and nutritionist, who will examine what strategies work on their dairies and will address the herd management and economic analysis involved at this level of production. Dave Balbian, Area Dairy Specialist, Central New York Dairy, Livestock, & Field Crops Team of Cornell Cooperative Extension, will moderate the panel.

Panelists will represent three farms:

Albano Farms/SRJF Inc., Stamford. The dairy and custom harvest business is owned by Frank and his brother Marc. Frank and Marc attribute forage quality, cow comfort, and detailed attention to the young stock program as the keys to their production levels. In addition, they are always looking for new ideas and how to improve their farm management. They have been involved in the Dairy Academy, Dairy Acceleration Program, and have worked with the Farm Viability Institute, which has enhanced their management abilities to achieve their current production levels. The Albanos are breaking ground on an expansion project this spring to bring the herd size to 300 cows.

Thornapple Farm, Leicester. This 900 cow dairy is owned and operated by Jerry and Darlene Hull, and their children Dan Hull and Amy Benedict. At Thornapple Dairy, the Hull family has created a culture of doing everything right, every day, on all aspects of the dairy, and instill that in their employees. They invest in their employees by continually offering training, structure, and smart decision making into the day to day operation of the farm, which is a critical piece to achieve high levels of production. The Hulls feel that the real profit is in paying attention to details.

Hanehan Family Dairy, Mt. Upton. Brothers Matt and Kurt Hanehan began the dairy operation in 2006, and currently milk 840 cows. The Hanehans have consistently produced in the 6.8 to 7 pound range for the past year. They attribute high quality feed, cow comfort, and attention to genetics and their breeding program to maintaining this level of production. Detailed management has allowed the average age of the herd to increase, which in turn fills the barns with multiple lactation cows that have the ability to produce at high levels. Kurt and Matt have maximized milk and component output without major capital improvements.

Also on the panel is Bruce Dehm, Dehm Associates, who will address the economics of component pricing, and how to plan and budget to reach the 7 pound milestone. Jay Giesy, PhD, is a Senior Dairy Specialist for Cargill Feed and Nutrition with 17 years of experience and will share strategies from the herds he works with. He provides nutrition and management support to Cargill Nutrition consultants and their dairy farm clients across the Northeast. In his role, Jay has the opportunity to see and learn the many strategies dairies implement to achieve top performance.