Have you ever thought about the security of your farm? Are you taking the necessary steps to protect your cows, your employees and your investment?
The Texas Association of Dairymen has taken part in many crisis drills and meetings to prepare for an episode we hope never happens. Recently, TAD board Chairman David Volleman and I participated in the Texas Animal Health Commission agriculture response management and resources tabletop exercise, held in conjunction with 11 other states that worked through the exercise at the same time. Working as a group helps us identify and work through issues that could arise during the unfolding of an event. The group then shares these issues with state and federal representatives present at the crisis drill. This will help speed decisions in the event of an actual crisis.
A crisis isn’t always a disease outbreak. As we saw at the start of 2016, Winter Storm Goliath tested Texas dairy farmers in many ways. Following that storm, TAD worked to address the challenges that arose from that storm, as well as focused on preparing for other events that could interrupt your business. TAD staff also continues to prepare both state and federal regulators by educating them about the hard questions that must be answered for Texas dairy farmers, in the event of a crisis.
We hope all this planning and work is never tested. But if we do have a disease outbreak or another major storm, going through these crisis drills will help both individual dairy farmers and our industry as a whole both recover and continue our mission to feed consumers.