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Paper along with digital

Schedules and lists. That’s what parents and dairy farmers are made of. The top questions in our house are: What do we have going on today? What’s on your list for today? Who’s on …

Family names

Naming calves around our farm is considered a family sport. A mass email goes out to all of the kids and adopted family members for their most creative suggestions for the next generation of Ralma …

With today’s dairy economics, capturing every pound of marginal milk is essential to profitability. Marginal milk can be defined as the few pounds of increased production that can be gained by …

Learning from the best

Everything I needed to know I learned from Norwegian bachelor farmers. Our neighbor, Martin, would be a good example. Dad shared machinery with Martin, so I learned a lot from Martin while I was …

I will forever be a dairy advocate

As I think about my first few months working in the dairy checkoff 40 years ago, I cannot help but smile. I started as a program director at Midwest Dairy, working with schools and health care …

Time well spent

Any farm wife and mom out there can attest to the fact that there never seems to be enough time in the day. Household chores and outside chores quite often take a little bit longer with two toddlers …

Ballad of a first-calf heifer

I arrived at my home farm a few weeks ago; the ride wasn’t bad, but my travel mates sure did complain and wiggle around and squish me a little too much. The driver was some young kid who …

Operation hat rescue

As we proceed with our farmhouse remodeling project, we are feeling like we are doing something that will enhance the house but also our lives. This house is well over 100 years old and has had …

Trade enforcement is a priority

At the 100th annual Agricultural Outlook Forum, U.S. Trade Ambassador Katherine Tai briefly touched on trade breakthroughs, but spent more time on the enforcement of existing trade deals. The Mexican …

The first federal order Class III milk price of 2024 starts with an 87-cent plunge. The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced the January benchmark at $15.17 per hundredweight, $4.26 below January …

On the road with Alice

Around the time Wisconsin became a state in 1848, it was known as America’s Breadbasket, with one-sixth of the nation’s wheat being harvested here. According to the Wisconsin Historical …

Whirlwinds of farming

I’ve always enjoyed talking to farmers and sharing their stories. Seeing the passion they hold for what they do daily always keeps me smiling. Coming from a farm myself, I know the work it …

Sharing dairy’s story

This past month was filled with activity. I made many classroom visits, met with local radio stations and saw my gopher friends from the Minnesota State Fair again. January started with a radio …

Smelling the seasons

Weather permitting, our dog, Bella, and I take a walk every day. Her job is to run ahead and scout for strange scents while mine is to tag along behind and superintend. One might think that …

Assessing a herd for hyperkeratosis

Recently, a farmer called me because a consultant had recommended changing pulsation settings in her parlor. This consultant thought that fewer of their cows might suffer from teat-end hyperkeratosis …

The beauty of redundancy

The beauty of redundancy lies well in line with how I prefer to labor. Given the choice, that means I labor as little and as leisurely as possible to achieve my goal. To be able to carry on and say, …

The power of passion, purpose, pairs

Recently, we have been discussing goals, one of which is to focus on calf health, specifically pneumonia, in our calves during the first 100 days of age. Anyone who has ever worked with dairy …

Questions

Questions. Questions. Every day. Some come at me from every which way They make my head spin and spin Which answer to give to win? Life is full of them, at all ages Out of …

A little gruff

The break in the cold weather is wonderful for us, but it creates extra work. We have calf pens to pitch out. The bedding pack needs to be loaded into the spreader and hauled to the fields, and …

After five months and 12,000 pages of testimony, the National Federal Milk Marketing Order Pricing Formula Hearing has ended. Forty proposals were submitted. The U.S. Department of Agriculture will …

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