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“Cowside Conversations” is a monthly podcast brought to you by the Center for Dairy Excellence. We’ve heard time and time again that dairy farmers learn the most from other dairy farmers. So, in this podcast we’re going to share real-time farmer insight, tricks of the trade, and inspiring stories from dairies across Pennsylvania.
 
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With October being American Cheese Month, Emily Montgomery of Calkins Creamery on Highland Farms in Wayne County, PA shared how she got her start with cheese-making. With her team making about 1,500 pounds of cheese a week, Emily discussed how she manages quality and consistency, drives profitability for her family’s dairy farm, connects with custo…
 
Safety protocols are a critical part of your dairy business to protect yourself and your employees. As we enter the fall harvest season, Brett Reinford of Reinford Farms in Juniata County, PA opened up about a farm accident he experienced last November — an accident he describes as “a direct hit, not a near miss.” In our 11th episode of Cow-Side Co…
 
One expense that is often overlooked on dairy farms is energy-related costs. In our 10th episode of Cow-Side Conversations, Josh Waddell of Apple Shamrock Dairy Farm in Crawford County, PA describes his model for success. Josh shares how an energy audit led to new opportunities and savings, and he breaks down several ways his family focuses on effi…
 
Over the past few months, we have seen feed costs rising exponentially as grain market prices reached record highs and remain well above historical averages. With overall feed costs representing anywhere from 35 to 70 percent of the total costs on a dairy, Walt Moore of Walmoore Holsteins in Chester County, PA shares his go-to strategies for managi…
 
June is extra special in Pennsylvania. Not only is it June Dairy Month, but Holstein breeders from all over the country are coming to the southeast corner of our state to celebrate the National Holstein Convention and to spotlight Pennsylvania Holstein genetics. In our eighth episode of Cow-Side Conversations, Duane Hershey of Ar-Joy Farms in Chest…
 
After a barn fire in 2008 and a near fatal accident in 2018 where he found himself between a gate and an oncoming skidloader, Chuck Carr of Lone Oak Farm joined us for our seventh episode of Cow-Side Conversations to share his inspiring journey toward recovery – both physically and mentally. With May being Mental Health Awareness Month, Chuck descr…
 
In our sixth episode of Cow-Side Conversations, Jason Frye of Pleasant Lane Farms in Westmoreland County, describes how a simple business plan helped his family transform their dairy and enter the value-added space to begin making cheese. After working in the high-tech space, Jason shares how they are adopting and embracing new technology and using…
 
In this fifth episode of Cow Side Conversations, Alan Waybright from Mount Rock Dairy in Newville, Cumberland County, shares his thoughts on transitioning into a new facility and investing in low-cost improvements to aid in cow comfort and herd performance. He also discusses how he leverages outside consultants to fine tune his operation.…
 
In this fourth episode of Cow Side Conversations, Carissa Westrick from Vale Wood Farms in Loretto, Cambria County, shares insight their farm family has gained from spending the last 80+ years in the value-added space. She also shares perspective she learned from their agritourism efforts geared to connecting with their customers.…
 
Dry matter is more than just a number on this dairy farm. For Brubaker Farms in Mount Joy, Pennsylvania, it's not just about getting pounds of dry matter into the cows – it’s how that dry matter is being converted into milk that really matters. In this episode, Tony Brubaker shares how tracking dry matter intake is helping his farm better manage th…
 
With the COVID-19 vaccine just approved by the FDA, everyone is talking about viruses, quarantine, and vaccines right now. In this episode, Nate Heim, the general manager at Yippee! Farms in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, shares his perspective and experience with vaccination protocols and biosecurity on the dairy farm.…
 
In this episode, Mark Mosemann, a partner at Misty Mountain Dairy in Fulton County, Pennsylvania, shares how they use risk management to protect both their input costs and milk price margins. Find out why Mark sees it as an important part of his farm's day-to-day business strategy.By Center for Dairy Excellence
 
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